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Web and mobile critical for brand awareness - study

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4th Mar 2010
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Marketers increasingly need to develop multimedia strategies that run across a range of channels if they are to build effective brand awareness, but mobile internet is the one to watch.

These are the findings of the European Interactive Advertising Association’s (EIAA) Mediascope Europe report, which covered 15 markets across the region including the UK.

Alison Fennah, the EIAA’s executive director, said: "Better devices and connectivity as well as enhanced consumer motivation all started coming together in 2009 to improve and extend the overall online experience. As a result, the internet is now being consumed across PC, laptop, mobile and gaming devices, providing 24x7 access to digital information and entertainment."

This meant that there was now a "compelling" case for brands to incorporate a number of complementary interactive platforms into the marketing mix rather than take an either/or approach in order to reach all kinds of demographics, she added.

The study found that about a quarter of Europeans now use the internet for gaming or listening to the radio online, while a third watch online films, TV or video clips. Significantly, around 29% of respondents indicated that they now followed brands more closely online than they ever did in the physical world.

Nearly three quarters also said that they employed the medium to stay in touch with friends and relatives more than they had previously, with almost half pointing out that they used their internet-enabled phones to do so. About 16% explained that they used such devices to communicate using social networking sites, while the same number employed mobile instant messaging mechanisms.

In fact, about 71 million Europeans now browse the internet using their mobile phones and spend an average of 6.4 hours a week doing so. This compares with only 4.8 hours spent reading newspapers and 4.1 hours reading magazines.

But it is the younger generation that is keenest on so-called 'internet-on-the-move'. Nearly a quarter of 16-24 year olds now use their mobile devices to go online compared with 21% of people aged 25-34, spending 7.2 hours and 6.6 hours per week at it respectively.

Almost half of all European households likewise own at least one laptop, while 52% now use wireless broadband. Bizarrely, 36% also surf the internet whilst watching TV, which perhaps suggests that the latter channel is less than compelling than it could be in terms of its entertainment value.

The report gives an alternative view, however. "Marketers should no longer look at media in isolation, but rather embrace the media-meshing trend and the wealth and diversity of advertising opportunity it affords."

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