Mobile Messaging Predictions

Mobile Messaging Trends - A Year In Review and a Look Ahead

Last year, when we made our predictions for 2016, we said that branded content and audience engagement campaigns would be more common in mobile messaging apps. That has certainly come to fruition this year with things like the introduction of iOS 10, which opened iMessage to third-party developers, the rise in popularity of chatbots and mobile messaging apps offering a plethora of ways for brands to get their messages in front of consumers. It’s time to make some predictions for 2017, but before we dive in, let’s take a look at a few prominent mobile messaging trends from 2016.

The mobile messaging space continued to grow. In terms of growth in general, in 2015 1.4 billion consumers used mobile messaging. That number is expected to be 2.19 billion consumers by 2019, according to eMarketer. Mobile messaging is clearly here to stay.

Chatbots are everywhere. Chatbots have made their presence known this year. Facebook Messenger, Kik and Line all introduced chatbots, and brands have wholeheartedly made them part of their mobile strategies. For instance, Facebook Messenger introduced chatbots in April and by the beginning of September, more than 11,000 bots were added to Facebook Messenger.

Content messaging became mainstream. With the opening up of iMessage on iOS10, branded content is playing more of a role than ever before. Brands are experiencing greater engagement in messaging apps than through traditional mobile advertising. It’s all about delivering high-quality, shareable content that resonates with users. 

A Look Ahead

For 2017, we expect to see even more brands making their presence known in mobile messaging apps so they do not get left behind. Mobile messaging is a great alternative approach to marketing for brands because we know traditional mobile ads do not necessarily resonate with younger consumers within a mobile messaging environment. It’s important to remember that mobile messaging is not social. Messaging is not display. Messaging is a different medium, and brands need to embrace it with a strategic approach.

Messaging is not social. Messaging is not display. Messaging is a different medium.

In the coming year, we also expect payments in mobile messaging apps to continue to grow. It will be important for e-commerce brands as they are looking to expand their reach to a new customer base. Offering payment methods within mobile messaging apps will allow brands to engage consumers within the app, keep them from leaving and provide a seamless branded mobile experience that drives revenue.

2016 has been a great year for mobile messaging and we look forward to seeing what 2017 will bring!