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Mobile marketing will generate a million new jobs by 2015 says new research

Peo­ple on the look­out for media jobs might do well to turn to the mobile adver­tis­ing indus­try over the next cou­ple of years. A new study com­mis­sioned by the Mobile Mar­ket­ing Asso­ci­a­tion pre­dicts that mobile mar­ket­ing will gen­er­ate approx­i­mate­ly 1 mil­lion new jobs and $400 bil­lion in incre­men­tal out­put to the U.S. econ­o­my by 2015.

Media jobs vs. regulation

The trade organization’s study has a dual pur­pose, to per­suade mar­keters to increase their spend on mobile adver­tis­ing and to illus­trate mobile marketing’s poten­tial to cre­ate jobs. But to be frank, the MMA also wants to stave off the poten­tial­ly stul­ti­fy­ing effects on media jobs of over-zeal­ous regulation.

As its CEO, Greg Stu­art, put it, “Ask­ing a bunch of peo­ple who are unfa­mil­iar with mobile mar­ket­ing to set up dig­i­tal pol­i­cy might inhib­it inno­va­tion. Let’s not sti­fle job growth.”

Media jobs in mobile mar­ket­ing will climb from 2012’s total of 524,000 to 1.4 mil­lion by 2015, the study projects. Mobile adver­tis­ing agen­cies are set to have their work cut out for them too, as more firms turn to mobile mar­ket­ing. The study fore­casts that mobile mar­ket­ing spend­ing will sky­rock­et from $6.7 bil­lion in 2012 to just short of $20 bil­lion in 2015.

How­ev­er, one minor neg­a­tive also emerged. Yes, mobile media jobs will increase and yes, sales gen­er­at­ed from mobile devices will soar (from $139 bil­lion in 2012 to in excess of $400 bil­lion by 2015). But by 2014, the return on mobile adver­tis­ing spend­ing is set to drop frac­tion­al­ly from $20.77 per spend to $20.15.

A diver­si­fy­ing market

The rea­son? Diver­si­fi­ca­tion of the mobile mar­ket, in a nut­shell. To date, mobile devices (espe­cial­ly smart­phones) have been large­ly embraced by young, high-income con­sumers. But they’re increas­ing­ly being tak­en up by low­er-income users, too, a devel­op­ment which is like­ly to prompt a small drop in returns.

That said, the study found that indus­tries which spent the most on mobile also reaped the high­est returns on the chan­nel. One of the study’s lead researchers, Colum­bia Uni­ver­si­ty Pro­fes­sor of Mar­ket­ing, Jo Plum­mer, said, “His­tor­i­cal­ly, spend­ing in all oth­er medi­ums even­tu­al­ly flat­tens out and declines. We don’t see that curve in the data that we have. We looked at the sales of high-end and low-end spenders in mobile, and while the cor­re­la­tion is not 1.0, it was in a pos­i­tive direction.”

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