Only one-third have had a mobile strategy in place for more than a year, and 10% for less than a year. Perhaps the lack of urgency is because mobile is seen less as a way to boost revenue and acquire customers than a way to increase consumer engagement, satisfaction and loyalty -- a value-add.
Only 2% of those surveyed expect to generate more than $10 million in mobile revenue in 2010, and nearly a quarter -- 23% -- say they're still in the "test and learn" phase.
As a result, resources committed to mobile are limited. Nearly half (46%) of companies surveyed had one or fewer employees working full time on mobile initiatives globally. Only 3% have a dedicated mobile business unit. And while a quarter said top management was responsible for mobile strategy, Forrester analyst Thomas Husson suggested they needed to be more involved to make sure mobile is properly funded.
Among other findings from the report, entitled "How Mature is Your Mobile Strategy," media, travel, and financial services brands are the most likely to have the most advanced mobile strategy.
"Brands that primarily view mobile as a new media or marketing channel have given responsibility to interactive marketers," noted Husson in a blog post Tuesday. "In fact, mobile is more than just an extension of the Internet; it offers the unique ability to connect with consumers anytime and anywhere."
He argued that companies are too siloed in their approach to mobile and not moving fast enough to keep up with the growth of mobile audiences for the likes of Facebook and Twitter. While acknowledging mobile is still an emerging platform, "I was surprised to see the lack of integration of mobile into companies' broader corporate strategies," wrote Husson.
Despite the rudimentary state of mobile strategy, 70% of firms plan to increase their mobile budget in 2011, with one in four companies doubling or tripling their mobile outlay. A separate report released Monday by eMarketer predicted U.S. mobile ad spending will grow nearly 80% this year to $743 million, and hit $1 billion in 2011. The study points to expanding use of smartphones as the chief catalyst for higher mobile spending.