The mobile phone, already the most personal device, is about to get way more personal.
When Apple releases iOS9 in the fall, iPhone users will have a dedicated album to store selfies, an enhanced Siri experience that will be more individualized, and context-driven content based on user location, time and historical behavior.
Also, the updated operating system will enable deep linking, which is a long-sought and valuable way for app makers to provide a link that takes someone to a specific page or section of an app. For example, if you are an auto manufacturer, you can bring a consumer to a specific car model within an app rather than have the person be taken to the general home screen showing all the vehicles for sale.
Apple said that when you adopt deep linking, you will see an “increase in the usage of your app” and an “improvement in discoverability by displaying your content when users search across the system and on the web.”
What are other marketing ramifications of all these changes? User expectations for tailored experiences will surely be that much higher.
Siri, which in the eyes of many has underperformed since being introduced in 2011, is said to be more of a personal assistant in iOS9. According to a news report on The Verge, Siri will soon analyze what’s on an iOS device (calendars, contacts, email) and habits (i.e. apps you open at certain times of day) and make suggestions whenever you swipe to the left of your home screen.
Siri will offer up the contacts and apps she thinks you’re looking for, along with quick links for nearby restaurants, movie theaters, shopping centers, and gas stations, The Verve reported.
Apple says that Siri speech recognition and natural language understanding has become 40 percent more accurate and faster in the past year. And there’s more.
Siri will automatically populate user calendars with meeting requests and invitations and then offer time-to-leave reminders based on traffic conditions.
Keying again on context, Spotlight Search will feature Siri suggestions of people, apps, music and local information based on user behavior patterns, time of day and location.
While most of the iOS9 updates are welcome (the exception is an ad-blocking capability that is detailed below), there is more that businesses can do to bring context to customers and prospects.
With the suite, you can:
- Track every event your users take
- Build campaigns that are triggered by user actions and delivered in real time
- Engage with users in real time using trigger-based campaigns and geo-location parameters
The benefits of mobile marketing automation:
- Higher user retention and engagement
- Brand loyalty with app users, earned through value-adding, relevant interactions
- Increased revenue
As for the ad blocking, Apple is incorporating the feature into the Safari web browser that will be updated in iOS9. This is a major development for marketers because Safari is the most widely used mobile browser in the world, with 42 percent of the market share.
Just how much this will change things remains to be seen. A look at online practices shows that relatively few users opt to obtain and run software to keep away marketing messages on web pages.
It goes back to what we’ve been saying all along. If a brand provides value to a mobile user in an app or elsewhere, he or she is more likely to engage than shut off the business and its ads or marketing.