Marketers’ use of mobile does not match customer behaviors and expectations, according to new Forrester data from surveys with 74 marketing leaders and 80,000 online adults in North America and Europe. The research also shows it’s still early days for marketers’ adoption of mobile technologies: 42% of surveyed marketers have had a mobile strategy for less than a year or are in the early stages of building one. As a result, marketing leaders face numerous challenges when embracing mobile technologies.

For instance, text messaging remains the only technology used by a large majority of mobile phone users across the globe — 74% of US online adults and 65% of EU online adults who use a mobile phone send or receive texts at least weekly. Yet many marketers choose to lean on trendy technologies such as QR/2D bar codes and mobile coupons, which for the most part lack mainstream usage.

What’s more, at more than 150 billion app downloads between the Apple App Store and Google Play since 2008, Forrester argues marketing leaders focus too heavily on building native mobile apps. “Few branded apps are used on a regular basis and deliver strong enough benefits to their audiences to command loyalty,” writes Forrester analyst Thomas Husson. “We’re starting to move away from the first generation of mobile apps to smart apps, connected to customer relationship management (CRM) systems, that deliver on customers’ contextual needs.”

For more information about this research, visit the Marketing Leadership blog.