Getting Started: Mobile Marketing

mobilephonetext80608562Mobile marketing is marketing your product and or service on or with a mobile device. There are several methods a business can conduct mobile marketing. One method consists of utilizing SMS (text messaging). Another tool, though not quite as popular, uses QR codes (quick response codes). Very simply, if you scan a QR code, it should offer a mobile friendly web page, which may include a coupon that only has to be shown to the merchant on your smart phone.

Another option is Bluetooth, which enables users to access a promotion, a deal, or offer within proximity to a particular restaurant or coffee shop. Lastly, using geo-social applications. Geo-social applications allow a user to “check in” at a place based upon their phone’s GPS location (i.e. Foursquare, Facebook, and Yelp).

Who is using cell phones?

As of June 2011, approximately 285 million people subscribe to mobile apps on their cell phones. This represents 91% of the US population. Since 2010, this amounts to an increase of 15 million people (users). The widespread use of cell phones means more and more people are accessing and downloading mobile apps.

Mobile gives you the most recent access to your target audience/customer. Customers depend heavily on mobile devices for information (news alerts, sports scores, politics, etc.).

Integrate, Integrate, and Integrate:

 One of the most effective ways to use mobile is across all channels. People can “like” your page from a smart phone. Adding a mobile call-to-action plan enables your business to measure immediate results and gauge traditional advertising impact and success.

For example, you have a restaurant and you create two lists, one for lunch and one for dinner. You could have customers sign up for menus to be texted with either the lunch or dinner specials. A business can test different forms of media by using different keywords. Results can be optimized quickly, thus giving businesses the ability to react and respond to customer concerns, questions, needs, and comments.

Text Messaging or Short Message Service (SMS.): Businesses disseminate what is referred to as “opt-in” offers to cell phones. People express desire to view the ads and give permission to the business to text them with the offer. Most, 98%, of the text messages are opened and response rates can be as high as 45%. As a business, you may target specific ads and/or messages to certain people at a particular time. The fact that 65% of mobile users send texts makes it easy for businesses to take advantage of this pervasive usage to share their ad or message.

QR codes or quick response codes have been around for a while. These codes provide immediate access to information. They supplies customers with an immediate call-to-action and furnishes you with instantaneous feedback. You can track use, date and time of scan, and where scanned.

It’s essential that you make sure it’s a call-to-action and link to Facebook, a Mobile web site, Twitter, or a coupon.

Bluetooth is wireless technology that is the simplest way to send content directly to mobile phones. It is a universal standard for wirelessly connecting devices, such as mobile phones. It is considered proximity marketing, which means that only one receives an ad when near a location. The customer has to agree to receive it. The information can be text, video, or images. Dunkin Donuts for example, uses Bluetooth to alert customers as they enter a particular location, if they have a special promotion or deal running that moment. It does require dedicated software and hardware. This serves as a great tool for location-based businesses (restaurants and coffee shops).

Why does it matter? Mobile coupons get 10x the redemption rate of traditional coupons. Most importantly, it provides an immediate call-to-action.

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