Smart Lock Screens Altering Mobile Marketing Methods?

Marketers embrace personalisation, engagement and impactful brand promotions through the smart lock screen cultivating consumer connections in the digital era

In an era of surging smartphone growth and increased internet access, marketers recognise a vast opportunity to engage with Indian consumers in a more personalised and authentic manner on their mobile phones.

According to InMobi’s 2024 Mobile Marketing Handbook, the smartphone penetration rate in India is 71 per cent, with an average Indian consumer spending four hours and five minutes daily on their device, surpassing the global average.

Marketer’s New Tool 

Brands now are communicating and delivering content through the smart lock screen, connecting with users before they even unlock their devices.

“India is one of the top two smartphone markets in the world, and smartphones have become the primary source of information and entertainment for Indian consumers”, highlights Shashank Srivastava, Senior Executive Officer, Marketing and Sales, Maruti Suzuki India.

He underscores the smart lock screen role as a critical tool for brands to grab the attention of Indian users in a world dominated by digital interactions, providing both convenience and personalisation. 

Srivastava notes that the smart lock screen provides instant access to pertinent information without the need to unlock the device, making it convenient for users in a fast-paced society. “The hyper-personalised targeted approach not only enhances the user experience but also increases the likelihood of consumer engagement and conversion”, he adds.

Sunil Narula, Senior Vice President- Sales & Marketing, Panasonic Life Solutions India emphasises the cost-effective nature of smart lock screens in India, providing updates without unlocking the phone

He contends, “Indian consumers enjoy content that is tailored to their preferences, interests, and cultural nuances that adapt to show personalised information resonate well with the desire for a customised user experience.”

Impactful Canvas for Brands

Generating awareness for a product or brand, creating a buzz and leaving a lasting impression on the audience are crucial objectives for marketers to create an impact. From sparking curiosity to capturing audience interest, the clutter-free space of the lock screen transforms into a canvas for brand promotion, especially suitable for product launches, burst campaigns and sale announcements.

Amit Mathur, President - Sales and Marketing, Finolex Cables recognises the smart lock screen as a powerful space for brand engagement. He highlights, “The lock screen is the first thing users see when unlocking their phones, making it a valuable canvas for creating a lasting impact.”

He emphasises the importance of a compelling visual identity for brand recognition and the ability of push notifications to establish instant connections with users along with understanding user preferences enabling personalised content delivery on the lock screen.

Capitalising on the immense popularity of sports in India, Dominos India seized the spotlight during the Cricket World Cup. They engaged pizza lovers with creative 'Cricket pizzas', using full screen visuals on the mobile lock screen to promote their latest deals, effectively boosting awareness and drawing attention to their offerings.

Karan Dua, Director, Marketing Communications, OPPO India highlights, “The access to a substantial consumer base helps us to segment them into different cohorts basis their online behaviours.”

He underscores that the smart lock screen feature serves as a distinct promotional platform compared to noisy social media channels.

Smart locks being a clean, distraction-free space, Dua notes, “It is much easier for the brands to get across their message without having the TG sidetracked.”

The InMobi report indicates that full-screen display ads on smart lock screens lead to a seven per cent increase in brand awareness and a five per cent increase in brand association and top-of-mind recall.

Engaging with Lock Screen

With click-through rates, views and view-through rates, the smart lock screen facilitates massive engagement. Marketers aim to nudge potential customers toward considering the brand's offerings through the lock screen, ensuring a memorable experience from the beginning.

Narula asserts, “By utilising real-time data and location-based services, marketers can push timely notifications and offers to consumers/influencers. Smart lock screens support interactive ads, enabling users to engage with the content without unlocking their phones.”

Taking the stance of Zomato’s sustenance campaigns and interactive experiences, it elevated brand salience, consideration and recall over the years. The brand’s impeccable art of engagement, whether it be a rainy day or a hard day at work, Zomato covers all of it in their quirky push notifications.

Mathur stipulates, “By leveraging data analytics, brands can understand user demographics and behaviours. This enables the delivery of targeted and relevant messages on the lock screen, ensuring that content resonates with the specific interests of potential customers.”

He suggests that integrating gamification on the lock screen enhances brand interaction, while time-sensitive promotions incentivise user engagement.

Promotional Drive

Brands leverage mobile marketing strategies, incorporating features like one-click install to facilitate seamless experiences for Indian consumers. They strategically promote meaningful engagement, capitalising on the lock screen's prime visibility to capture attention and drive seamless user interaction.

Brands like Meesho capitalised on the prime visibility of the lock screen for strategic remarketing, driving app opens and purchases efficiently. The smart lock screen's one-click install feature allows users to continue consuming content while the app installs in the background. According to India App Marketing Statistics, Meesho witnessed 122 million downloads in 2023.

Dua emphasises personalization in targeted promotions through the smart lock screen stating, “Personalisation enables the brand to interact better with their TG and enhances engagement rates.”

Srivastava highlights that marketers employ creative tactics to seamlessly integrate engaging promotions into the lock screen environment, relying on eye-catching visuals, concise messages, and interactive features, driven by data and personalisation.

“Well-placed calls to action prompt deliberate actions, ranging from taking advantage of promotional deals to sharing content with others. The smart lock screen is more than just a barrier; it has been transformed into a launchpad for active engagement and lasting brand loyalty”, he remarks.

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