What Is Mobile Marketing?
A question on the minds of many local business owners these days is “What is mobile marketing?” There certainly seems to be a lot of press on the subject and seems to be about different types of technology. This can be confusing and makes businesses trying to manage their online and offline promotions a bit nervous. (Rest assured, our Little Rock mobile marketing company, Mobile Site Army, is here to help clear up some of the confusion.)
According to wikipedia, mobile marketing is “the use of the mobile medium as a means of marketing communication”, the “distribution of any kind of promotional or advertising messages to customer through wireless networks”. In short the definition is very broad encompassing many different technologies to deliver many different formats of messages on many different kinds of devices. No wonder everyone is confused! 🙂
There are then 3 main aspects of mobile marketing to understand in terms of answering the question, What is mobile marketing?
What Are Mobile Devices?
First there is the delivery system, mobile devices. These can be cell phones, smart phones, ipads, and other mobile devices. There are many different kinds of mobile devices. It’s important to remember that in your mobile marketing campaigns. These various devices have different shapes, sizes and capabilities. This makes things a bit harder for mobile marketers when it comes to design and media, but it’s the wave of the future. There are many different solutions to deal with these differences.
Who Are Mobile Users?
Second you have to consider who mobile users are, what their needs are and what their usage will be of your content or your message. For example it’s worth noting that mobile users are moving around; they are, by definition, mobile. They are in their car or at a football game; they are hanging out with friends, or at the grocery store. The mindset of these users is quite different from desktop users of your content and affects how and when they respond to your message. You should always tailor your mobile marketing strategy to them, otherwise you will be barking up the wrong tree.
For example, don’t email them a coupon they have to print with their computer – they aren’t anywhere near a printer. Don’t put your content inside of pdf’s or use flash on your mobile site. They won’t be able to view it on their phones or other mobile devices. Video is also something you have to use carefully and only in certain ways if you want mobile users to be able to watch your handiwork
Another thing to bear in mind is that mobile users are quick responders. They are on the move, after all, and are very likely to come right away to buy a pizza you just offered them a coupon for. They share content and as such spread the word if your marketing, offering, or service is good or bad. (That’s why you should consider some sort of reputation management.)
What Is Mobile Marketing And Advertising And How Do I Do It?
Third is the actual mobile marketing and advertising. These three define the question, What is mobile marketing? But there still remains the question of how to do mobile marketing and advertising.
The mobile advertising market includes many different types of content and technologies. We will discuss some of them below. Be aware that new technologies and new ways to use current technologies are constantly being changing. Don’t let this list stop you from implementing some marketing strategy that includes mobile. Get started. You can always adjust your path. Additionally, think out of the box. Look for ways you can do something different. You are in no way restricted to using any of this technology in a traditional sense.
Mobile Advertising – is simply advertising specifically on mobile devices. If you are familiar with Google’s PPC platforms you’ll know exactly what this is. It is simply doing PPC on mobile devices only. Such advertising can also include banner ads on mobile websites, and other typical ways of advertising but only to mobile devices. This can also include marketing messages in mobile games and apps, we’ll discuss that a bit more below
Mobile Games – Games available for downloading and playing from mobile devices can be developed by your company to put marketing messages for gamers. Additionally you can pay for advertising messages to appear in other people’s games.
Mobile App Marketing – This is similar to marketing with mobile games. You can have a mobile app developed and offered to the mobile community for free or for a small fee. Inside the application can appear some sort of promotional message. And of course, you can pay to have your message included in someone else’s app.
SMS Marketing – One of the most well known ways to market to mobile users is sms marketing, also called text message marketing. A mobile user subscribes to your list and you are then able to send them promotional text messages. These are great for local mobile marketing for small businesses, especially restaurants. You can send discounts with short time frames and because these users are mobile and tend to respond you can have a quick sale that boosts your profits without a lot of fuss and budget. (It’s much better than planning a sale, printing flyers and advertising, sending emails, etc. trying to get the word out and then hoping folks show up, isn’t it?)
With SMS mobile marketing you can decide that things are slow on a Wednesday evening and send out a message that offers a 10% discount to anyone who comes in that evening and shows the waiter their text message. Done. Not bad, huh?
Coupons – this is similar but a little different. Coupons can be text messages, or they can be emailed. They can also be available on your Google Local Page or your Facebook or Twitter page, or any other social media site accessible and frequented by people from mobile phones.
Proximity marketing is another way you can promote your business to local customers with mobile phones. When people “check in” at certain places or use sites like FourSquare to share their activities with others you are essentially interacting with people based on where their phones are (and they are typically not more than 3 feet away, 24 hours a day!
QR Codes – Mobile marketing with qr codes can have many benefits. If you don’t know what they are, qr codes (also called mobile barcodes or 2d barcodes) are those squiggly squares you see all over everything these days. If you take a photo with your cell phone of the QR code it will either take you to a website (hopefully a mobile optimized site!), or to a social sharing site like Facebook, or to a coupon, or sign you up for a newsletter or transfer contact information to your phone like an electronic business card, or a number of other things. It’s much easier to take a picture than to write down a web address or a phone number. They come in handy for mobile users and mobile marketers.
Social Media – social media is huge these days. Sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google Plus, Google Local, and many others cannot be overlooked in your marketing efforts and should include a site towards mobile users. Many people access these sites from their mobile devices, so keep that in mind. A big part of social media in terms of benefits for companies include branding, and presence of mind. You want to make sure you are posting to these sites frequently.
Videos – It’s official; Youtube is a hit! Everybody and their brother has a Youtube channel. I sure hope you do! In some ways Youtube is another social media or social sharing site. Lots of people spend tons of time there watching videos. It’s the third largest search engine in the world. Think about that for a second. Additionally Youtube has some other SEO benefits and search engine marketing benefits you should consider if you haven’t already. Why am I including this in my answer to the question, What is mobile marketing? Because though many video platforms and sites cannot be accessed or effectively used to market your business on mobile phones, Youtube can! So think of ways to use video and engage your customers from Youtube and in video. There are so many things you can do with this like product demonstrations, video testimonials and more.
Email and Newsletters – Both email and newsletters are still very effective ways of contacting your customers, getting mind share and sharing new content and offerings with them. What is important to note is that tons of folks are interfacing with their email from their mobile devices. Because of this you need to consider that your messages should be easy to read, quick to load and be mobile friendly. They might also contain coupons and other types of timely offers since they are more likely to respond since they are mobile users.
Reputation Marketing – keeping up with the Jones is somewhat easier on our egos than keeping up with what folks are saying about us, isn’t it? But it’s necessary. If you aren’t already you need to be incorporating a reputation marketing process. People talk and what they say these days is remembered by the search engines and offered up as information available about your company. There are things you can do to minimize bad reviews, and get good ones. You can also keep an eye out for disgruntled or unhappy customers and find ways to make them happy. All of this can be done from your cell phone, so I’ve included it as part of mobile marketing. (Visit Little Rock reputation manager for more info.)
Blogging – Blogging is still a very easy way to dispense information, demonstrate your vast knowledge and interact with your customers. These days you can do this all from your mobile device while waiting in line at the bank, or waiting for your kid to get done with soccer practice. It’s a way to market your business, yourself, your products or services right from your smart phone. And it will more often than not be accessed from a mobile device as well.
Mobile Search Engine Marketing – Would it surprise you to know that there are two Googles? There are. One is focused on delivering the best results to desktop searchers. The other is focused on delivering the best results to mobile searchers. You need to be in both indexes, and you need to rank in both. Just because you rank well in one does not mean you will rank well in the other. Additionally you won’t be a good result in Google’s eyes if you don’t have a mobile optimized site.
Mobile Site Design – Having a mobile optimized, or mobile friendly site is not a suggestion or option. It’s necessary. If folks can’t find your in Google Mobile Search because you don’t have a mobile site you will be ignoring a third to a half of your customers. For reals. Think about that. Imagine ignoring a third to a half of your customers. You know what they’ll do. They’ll make a beeline to your competitors. And let me tell you, the statistics indicate they won’t wait for that site to load very long either.
In fact, most of your efforts in mobile marketing should get your customers to visit a mobile friendly site. If you need a Little Rock mobile design, be sure and give us a call. And if you have any other questions like What is mobile marketing, please let us know, post them on Facebook or ask them below.