Operators missing out on personalization opportunity

Consumers want a personal mobile content discovery process that goes beyond simple search, according to a Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) survey of US and UK consumers released today. If content was, foremost, easier to find, 63% indicated they would spend more time accessing or purchasing it. If it were also more personal, respondents indicated they would increase their time spent accessing content to more than an hour, as well as their monthly spending by $8.

For mobile network operators, this presents a pretty clear opportunity to increase mobile data usage and sales through personalization. This was Qualcomm’s anticipated conclusion given that it’s using its acquisition of ad-targeting firm Xiam for mobile content discovery personalization. The company suggests that clear billing, fair pricing, ease of access and ease of finding and purchasing desired content are important features for improving content acquisition, which 80% of respondents said was a difficult process.

Discoverability has become an even larger problem with the apps offered in mobile app stores growing at an exponential pace. Most consumers are still finding mobile content through search engines or typing in URLs on the mobile Web, but their outlets for content are more plentiful than ever before. Liz Gasser, senior director of strategic marketing at Qualcomm Internet Services, said that operators are in a powerful position to grow the market by delivering an improved retailing experience and bringing together content from various sources.

“Of the people who download content today, two-thirds them also access the Web at least once a day, and 50% of them are online several times a day,” Gasser said. “People who are prolific content consumers are prolific data users across the board, so you really need to cater to both experiences as an operator and give people both.”

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