Mobile Marketing – Large and Soon To Be in Charge
Mobile phone growth has become enormous and it has no signs of stopping. People are now not only making and receiving phone calls, but are continuously checking e-mail, social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, finding information on Google, browsing mobile websites, viewing maps for directions, shopping and purchasing using their phone, playing games, taking pictures, recording videos, watching videos, sharing contact information and texting messages to one another. They are now doing much more on their mobile phone than they do on their personal computer.
Mobile marketing is a two-way interactive method of marketing to prospects and customers through mobile phone devices (including iPads and similar tablets). You are using mobile devices as your method to distibute your marketing messages, reaching a whole new source of qualified leads. It is another powerful tool in your arsenal of marketing strategies.
How large is it? Immense. There are currently 5 billion mobile phone subscriptions versus 2 billion Internet subscriptions. That is 2 1/2 times as many mobile phone users as internet users. About 1.3 billion users use e-mail, whereas about 3 billion users use text messaging.
If you subtract the very young and the very old, then just about everyone with purchasing power has a mobile phone. With them at all times. Always on, always available. It is one of the three things that people are never without: their wallet, keys and cell phone.
You can now see how important it is he found on the mobile networks, as consumers regularly use their phones to find information and act on it.
How Can We Use Mobile Marketing In Our Business?
Not all businesses need mobile marketing, but many do. If you are a retail business or selling directly to consumers, you have to have. You need two things:
1. A mobile-friendly website
2. Mobile advertising strategies, starting with the following:
i) text messaging marketing program
ii) QR codes for all of your marketing materials
iii) a mobile opt-in for on your website in addition to your e-mail opt-in form
1. Why you need a mobile-friendly website
When you plan your mobile marketing campaigns, you will at some point, be sending consumers to your website. If your website is not mobile friendly (meaning customized to fit the mobile screen, not just having your full website viewable on a mobile screen), consumers will not have a good experience and will leave your mobile site.
Advantages of the mobile-friendly site:
- Design is easily readable without having to scroll all over
- Has large buttons and large text that won’t be missed
- Can include Tap To Call, Tap For Directions, and Tap For Map
- Includes important information only, which is all that people on the go really need (although you can include a link to your full site if you wish)
Also, having a separate well designed set of mobile friendly webpages gives your site more pages for the search engines to look at, more authority and better search engine rankings.
2. Mobile Advertising Strategies
Text Messaging Marketing Program
This is a direct, personal and cost effective way to communicate with consumers. You first enroll in a text messaging plan (which we can provide). Then you send test text messages to your list, ensuring that you are offering value. If your subscribers deal that you are just sending them spam, they can quickly popped out of your list and they are gone forever. Don’t fall into that trap.
Example: TEXT PIZZA TO 72727 to receive 10% off your order.
Once you text PIZZA to the short code (72727 in this example but it will be different for you), the text messaging system will return a coupon to their phone giving them the 10% discount that they can show at the store. The system will also add them to your mobile prospect and customer list so that you can continue to market to them in the future until they decide to opt out.
Text messaging is an incredible marketing opportunity for small businesses. If you can type, you can send a text message.
What can you offer your prospects and customers through mobile advertising?
The list can go on and on depending on your creativity, but here are a few examples:
- Sales and store events
- Coupons, discounts or specials
- Surveys and feedback campaigns
- Ticket sales
- Fan clubs and loyalty clubs
- Class schedules
- For realtors, details of a new house for sale
- Last minute travel deals
- Emergency alerts
- New publications
- Health and fitness tips
- Carryout and delivery ordering
- Appointment and calendar event reminders
- Event announcements and invitations
- New product launches
- Plus many more
You should include information about your mobile marketing campaigns in all of your marketing materials to encourage prospects and customers to sign up with their mobile phones.
A QR code (Quick Response) is a barcode that was developed in Japan. It is extremely popular there and in Europe, and is now quickly growing in popularity in North America.
If you are unaware of this quickly emerging and simple technology, please watch this short video from CBS News:
On your mobile phone you need a camera for scanning the code and QR scanner software (there are many free downloads, I’d like can i-nigma). Open your QR scanner on your phone and scan the image. Your QR code, depending on how you created it, can return back to the prospect or customer’s cell phone any of the following:
- A link to a webpage on your website (hopefully it is mobile-friendly!)
- Your contact information (name, address, phone, e-mail, web, etc.) which the user can then tap to import you as a contact on their phone
- Text details of your choice
Example: Real Estate Agent: Put a QR code in your advertising and on your signs. When someone scans it, it goes back to your mobile friendly website with details, images and videos of the property plus information on how to contact you.
These QR codes can be printed on just about anything, even T-shirts! They should, however the part of all your marketing materials, especially your business cards. The uses for QR codes are endless.
Why Should My Business Use Mobile Marketing?
- Helps you stand out from the crowd and access a completely new source of leads.
- Build brand awareness, increase your prospect and customer opt in list, increase foot traffic to your business and drive up attendance to your events.
- Most people have a mobile phone, carry it constantly and it is always on and available.
- Users can purchase directly from their phones.
- Messages are instantaneous. You don’t have to wait to get home to your computer and boot it up; there are no coupons to clip; there is no waiting to go to the store.
- It’s an affordable and effective way to build your client base.
- Click through rates and conversion rates are higher for text messages than for e-mail and webpages.
- The open rate for e-mail is approximately 30%, whereas over 90% of text messages are read within three minutes of delivery and 99% are eventually it (source: SinglePoint). Therefore, text messaging through mobile phones is becoming the preferred way to reach prospects and customers.
- Text messages do not have to go through spam filters.
- Text coupons have a redemption rate of 10 to 30% because they are always available on the phone, as opposed to e-mail and paper coupons.
- Immediate results, i.e. you don’t have to wait for it to be published on TV, radio, paper advertising or even waiting for them to read your e-mail or website article.
- Better return on investment since you are sending out sales, specials and discounts rather than educational or informative messages.
- Convenience of being able to send messages exactly when you need to. Have a product that is now on sale? Send a message. It’s Tuesday and your restaurant does not have a lot of reservations? Send out a two-for-one deal between 6 PM and 10 PM for that night.
Mobile phones are here to stay and will continue to expand. It is already a bigger market than personal computers and mobile Internet use is expected to surpass desktop Internet use by 2014.
Marketing to mobile users, using different tools, will help you access an even larger market will find leads. Extending your online promotional strategies to mobile users is definitely one of the keys to your future business growth. Clearly, if your business isn’t moving toward the mobile web, you are losing clients to your competitors who are.