What is Mobile
The most important aspect of mobile marketing is that it's
a personal two-way communication between your business and a customer. . . and it must be
permission-based. You provide the opportunity for your customers to "opt in", and when they do, they give you
permission to send them marketing messages. If they no longer want to receive those messages, they're free to
"opt out". This is key to understanding mobile - just as a quick important note before you continue reading more
The second most important aspect of mobile marketing is that we
need to guard against glossing over that second word . . . "marketing".
The mobile technology is simply a tool that enables us to use marketing principles that are
well established, because over the years, they've proven to be effective.
Marketing refers to businesses connecting with consumers who use smart phones and the earlier feature phones that
are capable of sending and receiving text messages (as well as other mobile devices), or SMS (Simple Message
Every day the statistics change as more smart phones replace the
older models, and sales of tablets multiply, too. For now, though, we know that some customers are
using feature phones, so we certainly don't want to exclude them from our mobile marketing strategy. Campaigns
can be compatible to all mobile users by including both a text message and a more visual type of
Mobile is now considered the "7th Mass Media", has been referred to
as the "The New Frontier", and some leaders in the marketing industry consider it "more important than the printing
press!" This designation as a mass media is defined as having the ability to reach 95% of people in the world.
Mass media capability began with Print after the invention of the printing press. Fast forward to the Internet
. . . it was the sixth Mass Media a few years ago. The Ability to Print, record audio, Cinema, Radio, and
Television came earlier. So, you can see the progression brought about by technical innovations and can probably
understand the need to bring your marketing current.
‘Building a list’ of your customers who give you permission to
contact them by text message will prepare you to begin a mobile marketing
campaign. It's very similar to email
marketing, in that it is permission based, but conversion rates are much higher due to the fact that people
open their text messages close to 100% of the time, and within fewer than 5 minutes. As we go through
this transition, you can do both in order to reach all of your customers. Email marketing is still considered
viable and effective.
You'll want to create one or more campaigns. An ongoing one to help
continue your list building, and others for your various offers and customer favorites. Try to choose
a ‘keyword’ that aligns with your offer. For example, if you own a florist shop, you may wish to
use the word ‘flowers’. If your desired keyword is already in use by the system you'll need to modify it by adding
another word to it (ie-"bestflowers") or find the next best choice that's available. It may take a bit of
creativity, but you'll probably be happier with the keyword that taxed your imagination, as it may serve to
uniquely identify your business.
The mobile platform you're using will determine the "shortcode",
five or six digit number. Using the florist example, you would advertise “Text
‘flowers’(the keyword) to 99999 (whatever the shortcode number is) to join our exclusive mobile club and
get special mobile only deals”.
back, a survey was taken of consumers. They were asked whether they would prefer to receive mobile coupons - 62%
said "Yes". They continue to wait, for the most part. There's no need for you to wait to give your customers the
convenience of mobile coupons, though - we can get you up to speed quickly and
integrate your mobile marketing Call-to-Action with all of the marketing you're currently practicing. Invite
current and prospective customers into your campaign by putting signage in your shop window, including that message
on your website, in all of your offline advertising, and on flyers (or your receipts) when customers check
Your first message back to your customer after they've opted in
will most likely thank them for signing up, and may include a coupon for a percentage off a product. Following
messages could contain special offers, news and updates about your business, links to videos or other content
online, depending upon the nature of that specific campaign.
There are rules for writing your text messages that you'll need to
learn, but they aren't difficult to understand. The CTIA (Cellular Telecommunications Industry
Association) is the regulatory group for mobile marketing, and the Mobile Marketing Association has
set 'best practices' and continues to play a major role in growing this method of marketing in a way that
ensures good ethics are maintained. Below is a brief listing of the rules that apply to mobile marketing
Inform customer of the number of messages they can
expect to receive each month (3-5 recommended)
Inform them that "Message and Data Rates May Apply"
Let them know how to unsubscribe if they no longer want to receive your messages-STOP to Stop
Tell them how to get Help - "Text HELP for Help"
Terms and Conditions may Apply
Of course, each message should also tell who the message is from- just like when you telephone someone and
immediately introduce yourself as, "Hello, this is John Smith from ABC Widgets"
The number of characters per text message is limited to 160,
including the all the necessary 'rules'; so abbreviations are frequently used. Two messages can be sent if
needed to convey your campaign purpose.
Since consumers are so acclimated to their mobile devices (even
addicted, according to a recent study by the MMA), Mobile Marketing is growing quickly. Once only affordable for
huge corporations, prices have come down due to shared short codes . . . it's now very reasonable for any
Once small businesses learn about it, and begin to practice mobile
marketing it will likely grow quickly and it has the potential to help businesses thrive. Those who
lead will no doubt do best. Before you think, "Mobile is coming, I'll need to think about it one day", be
advised - mobile is here now, and consumers are very cognizant of it. Mobile Apps, the ones you download from the
Apple store and google Play are getting more and more popular. The recent announcement that desktop computers have
been outsold by mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) should resonate with you in regard to whether an app may
be the best for your business. with an App submitted to the app stores, a different type of communication takes
place, called "push messaging".
With mobile marketing, you'll have access to detailed
analytics on whether a text message was opened (when it was opened) and what possible action each customer took (as
in clicking on a link, watching a video, or using “click to call or email” options). Marketers use these analytics
to learn what consumers like best so they can improve results.
Mobile marketing can be used by any type of
· Real estate
companies are early adopters. They usually provide a QR Code for their properties. Consumers can scan the code with
their mobile phone to get information and view photos or videos about the property.
offices, beauty salons, and other professionals who work on an appointment basis are now using text messaging to
remind people of their appointments. Given the 98% open rate for text messages, this is very effective, and saves
labor and money. Clients/patients can reply with confirmation that they intend to make the appointment, or they can
re-schedule by text message.
We have a calculator tool that can be used to calculate the ROI of this
method of reminders to calculate whether this may be a viable solution for your business.
often build a list full of people who enjoy mobile coupons allowing them a two-for-one or percentage off a meal (or
a free drink or dessert). They also attract customers by sending a text message at a time when business is slow,
such as 3:00 p.m. in the afternoon. The message may read “come in within the next twenty minutes and receive a free
____??” This is often very effective, as the person who receives the text may be visiting with friends and will
bring along several additional diners to take advantage of the special deal. For sports bars, or anyplace where
people gather to enjoy themselves, relax, or socialize a trivia game campaign is great
for encouraging interaction. Winners often receive a percentage off coupon for their next visit or some type
of attractive offer.
electricians, and others who provide services for homeowners use text messaging to stay connected with clients,
updating them if they’re running late or earlier than expected. Of course they can also issue and process mobile
coupons, as well.
· Starbucks, and
other coffee shops have gotten onboard with convenient Apps for their customers. Eventually, everyone will be
paying their bill by using their smart phone. The Google Wallet is here, and other alliances are formed to apply
NFC to alternate brands. Customers won't need to bring a coupon, cash or a particular debit or gift card
– it’s right on their phone, and most smart phone users don’t go anywhere without that.
· Many businesses
are beginning to use QR Codes (not familiar with these? See the article explaining them on the 'Articles' Page), Microsoft Tags, and other 2 dimensional bar codes in their mobile marketing
campaigns. These can be used creatively on offline elements of the business, such as product boxes, clothing (price
tags or on the clothing themselves), signage (as in the aforementioned real estate example), and any number of
creative places. The customer can scan them and immediately be sent to a website, clickable phone number,
clickable email address, coupon, menu, or map with directions.
· QR codes are
frequently used in conjunction with smart phones for subway passes, even airline boarding passes. If you’ve
travelled to other countries, you’ve probably experienced this. Hopefully, in the near future, all of our
businesses will be updated for the benefit of tourists who visit us.
The list of uses for mobile marketing is truly only limited by your
imagination. We can help you decide whether a mobile marketing campaign is right for your business and, if so,
provide training or manage it all for you. We can advise
you on the timing of your messages (which can be scheduled ahead of time), as well as helping to plan your strategy
and create your marketing calendar for the year. We’ll be happy to explain it all to you and answer any
questions you may have.
One indication that mobile is the wave of the future for businesses
of all sizes is to observe the direction Google is going. They own the mobile advertising company, Admob, are
purchasing other mobile related technology companies, such as Motorola and are investing heavily in Near Field
Communications (NFC) technology research and development. This is the technology that will render wallets obsolete,
turning our smart phones into even more powerful hand held devices.
It’s safe to assume that in the fairly
near future, every business will need to have an App to provide to their customers as
a virtual business card, or a bookmark customers can place on their
phone's screen for convenience.
We provide our clients with an App
that brings people to a page (default is the 'Home Page' but we can direct it to any page, such as "daily
specials", for example). Every time your customers see the app they can't help thinking about you, so it's a
frequent advertisement to them.
The app is a small image we create,
using your business colors and/or logo - it's programmed to work as a clickable image link.
This type of bookmark app works great for local businesses. It's not found on the app stores, but that type of
app is also available for you, though the cost is higher. Scan the QR Code on the 'Home' Page to see this website
It's no wonder that Mobile Marketing is considered a win-win
approach to informing consumers about how our products and services can add value to their lives. When you're
able to target marketing to someone who is waiting eagerly to make a purchase, rather than throwing out offers
and hoping that someone will respond - you're not really advertising; you're simply fulfilling a need. Your
customers will likely be very appreciative of this individualized help.
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