The Untethered Affluent

Despite the marketer’s edict that mobile should be an essential part of today’s marketing strategy, agencies and clients that market to affluent consumers continue to look at mobile as an afterthought in their brand journey. Mobile executions are too often simply just that- executions that are thrown in simply to acknowledge that mobile is covered as part of the marketing mix. Display, social, search and other aspects of digital continue to garner the majority of our marketing attention. But in order for us to effectively reach affluent consumers, we first have to understand their behavioral patterns, and today that starts with mobile. 

Consider this:

  • 90% of U.S. households with an income of $250,000 or more are using mobile and digital applications (Shullman Research Center, 2013)
  • Affluent professionals spend 50% of their time using mobile devices for work (Affluent Connection, 2014)
  • 39% of affluent individuals use their mobile device at least once per waking hour (Affluent Connection, 2014)
  • Affluent consumers are 15%-30% more likely to read current affairs, business/finance and sports news on their mobile devices compared to the general population (Affluent Connection, 2014)



We all get it. Mobile marketing requires much more time and effort compared to other forms of digital media. There’s the need for a responsive or mobile-specific website, to create ads in custom sizes/specifications, and more specialized manpower to piece together fragmented analytics data. But these are all investments worth making if your main goal is to effectively reach and influence the purchasing decisions of your affluent customers.

The best way to execute a mobile marketing campaign aimed at affluents is to look at mobile not only as another channel to reach people via display, paid search, social and video, but also as a way to make your other marketing and content programs work harder. Knowing that users are instantly Googling, tweeting or texting via their mobile devices anytime they come across something interesting, marketers should begin to think about how they can utilize the real-time nature of mobile to continuously engage their customers after making initial contact via TV, out of home, digital, etc.

For example, encouraging users to text a number for an informational packet after they see your billboard on I-95, or search for a keyword that drives them to a microsite via mobile SEM after they see your Captivate ad. These are all experiences that allow advertisers to stay connected to their potential customers after the initial exposure and leverage the behavioral patterns of today’s affluent audience.

With our ability to location target, advanced behavioral target (such as by the apps an individual has downloaded), and utilize technological innovations such as near-field communication, marketers have the ability to engage consumers and provide a holistic brand experience like never before. The companies who can effectively create that integrated experience and provide value to consumers as they go through each step of the purchase cycle should achieve long-term business and marketing success. Understanding that mobile has become one of the most, if not the most, important pieces to engaging with and changing the purchasing behavior of affluent consumers is a good first step towards accomplishing that goal.

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