How to Create a Smart Mobile Marketing Strategy
Smart phones and other mobile electronic communication tools represent one of the most significant technological and indeed cultural revolutions in history. They have changed the way we communicate with each other. They have changed how we socialize.
They've changed the way we live our daily lives, and they have fundamentally altered the 21st century marketing and advertising landscape.
Just how big a part do mobile devices play in marketing today? Mobile usage is pervasive in marketing and is growing substantially. Consider these statistics from a recent article by the Online Marketing Institute:
- “53% of American consumers use their smartphones to access search engines at least once a day.”
- “4 out of 5 consumers use smartphones to shop.”
- “Over 75% of mobile device users respond to mobile-optimized sites when making purchases.”
- “64% of smartphone owners are now using their mobile devices to shop online”
Many marketers who try mobile marketing do so haphazardly without applying sound strategy. But mobile marketing presents an enormous opportunity for savvy marketers who “get it”, who design and execute smart mobile marketing strategies. This article will offer marketers like you some useful tips to help you get the most return you can from your mobile marketing investment.
Strategy, Not Just Tactics
In today's marketing culture, it's easy to fall prey to the lure of the marketing “magic bullet”. It's tempting to search for just one thing, one new “shiny object” that we believe will solve all of our marketing problems.
Whether it's social media, SEO, email marketing, online video, or yes, mobile marketing, many business owners and marketing professionals are frantically searching for a nifty new marketing tool to try to solve all of their marketing and lead generating problems.
I'm not knocking any of these tools. They are all potentially very useful, but they need to be applied according to a sound, well-planned marketing strategy.
I'll repeat myself at the risk of sounding redundant; it's important to remember that mobile marketing isn't a “magic bullet”. It's a tool that can be used in many different marketing scenarios to help businesses engage with their customers and make more sales, including very valuable repeat sales. But, if it's used, it needs to be used as part of a smart, comprehensive marketing strategy, not haphazardly as a single tool.
A homebuilder doesn't rely on a single tool. It would be silly to try to build a house with only a sledgehammer or screwdriver. It's just as silly for marketers to try to rely on only one tool as part of their “toolbox”.
Just as the mobile marketing tool needs to be used as part of an overall marketing strategy, it needs to be set up according to a specific mobile strategy. Marketers who decide to implement a mobile program need to review the available mobile marketing tools and decide which ones to use and for what purpose.
Available mobile marketing tools include
- SMS text messaging,
- Customized apps specifically designed for the business,
- Mobile-optimized websites and landing pages,
- Email marketing optimized for mobile devices
- QR codes
Each one has specific advantages and limitations that marketers need to consider before they add them to their mobile marketing mix. For example, text messages have the advantage of a very high open rate.
According to one study, text messages have an open rate of over 99%! The same study also reports that 90% of all text messages are read within three minutes of being received on a user's phone. Those kinds of statistics are truly a marketer's dream!
But keep in mind that each individual mobile marketing tool has its own advantages and drawbacks. Text messages, even with those stellar open rates, may not be right in every marketing plan.
Mobile Marketing Best Practices
"No one cares about your product except you” David Meerman Scott – Author of The New Rules of Marketing & PR
Keep in mind that mobile marketing is still marketing. There are many marketing rules that apply to mobile marketing also. Remember this: the reader of your marketing message doesn't care about your product. He's interested in what your product will do for him.
To be effective, marketing, including mobile needs to focus on the prospect, not the company and its product. Mobile marketing needs to focus on helping the prospect solve a problem, accomplish a goal or get something he really wants.
Mobile content, like regular marketing content, needs to entice the reader to want to do business with the company. It needs to offer solutions to problems and desirable benefits. It needs to capture and keep the reader's attention. This last bit is always critical in marketing, but especially in mobile marketing.
Providing a thorough “how to” on writing great copy and content is beyond the scope of this article. This website is loaded with fantastic free resources and training on this critical marketing topic.
Keep in mind that the mobile user is often scanning his device while he's “on the go”. While he's in a line at the grocery store. While he's riding a bus or train. He's typically busy and distracted when he's looking at a marketing message on a mobile device. You, as the marketer, have to capture and keep his (often very scattered and divided) attention.
The user experience in online marketing is always critical for the success, and mobile marketing is no exception to this rule. Websites and landing pages need to be specifically designed for mobile devices. They need to be simple to navigate. Marketing messages need to be brief and to the point. They need a strong call to action designed to persuade the reader to take action now. They need to arouse his curiosity to make him want to begin and keep reading.
As you are designing your mobile campaign, put yourself in your prospect's shoes. Think of the user experience from his point of view. Your mobile marketing needs to be simple, uncluttered and not require a lot of effort on your reader's part. Keep in mind that he's often looking at your message while he's “on the go”. If reading it and doing the thing you want him to do is hard work, he won't do it.
A Word About QR Codes
QR codes can be very useful mobile marketing tools. They can be a great way to integrate mobile with offline marketing; for example, by including them in a magazine or on a postcard and inviting the mobile user to scan them in order to get a “surprise” or a “goodie” he can't get anywhere else.
They can direct mobile traffic to a highly customized landing page designed and optimized to convert page visitors into buyers!
QR codes, used wisely can increase engagement and draw new prospects into your mobile marketing world.
But, they are often used incorrectly and VERY ineffectively. If you use a QR code in magazine ad, or on a postcard or flyer, have a call to action. Tell the reader to scan it. Tell him why you want him to scan it. Offer him some juicy, tasty benefits if he does scan it. Make it worth his time and effort to scan it. Do not just place the QR code in the ad by itself with no text describing it and telling him why it should interest him.
The Ultimate Use For Mobile Marketing?
Like we've been talking about, mobile has many great applications that lots of marketers can take advantage of in a big way. But the biggest benefits of mobile marketing may be those available in the very difficult, often cutthroat world of retail, especially the realm of small, locally-owned retail businesses.
The ways retailers can leverage the power of mobile to serve their customers while also helping their bottom line are almost limitless. Retailers with custom apps their store visitors have installed on their phones can send mobile coupons to them while they are in the store or restaurant giving them very nice discounts and encouraging them to buy more.
Just like many businesses have lists of customers' email addresses, retailers can collect their mobile phone numbers and offer special deals by text message.
Remember what we said earlier about text messages having open rates of over 99%. How much could a local, “mom and pop” restaurant stand to gain by sending an impromptu text message to its subscriber list on a night when business was slow offering special deals like free appetizers or deserts if folks who got the message came in that night?
Yes, mobile marketing can be a “dream come true” for a lot of marketers. But remember that user experience is a critical part of mobile marketing success. If you are looking to set up a mobile marketing campaign and you want a mobile-optimized landing page or an attention-getting app your users will love, contact Lander today.
And, we're fanatical about providing your users an outstanding user experience.We have a large and growing list of client success stories. Maybe your company's mobile marketing program will be featured in our next one.