Mobile phones and devices are wonders of modern technology. Aside from making phone calls, these devices have the capabilities of mini-computers, plus it is ultra-portable. Mobile phones are also very personal devices and are usually an essential extension of their owners. In fact, many people feel naked when they leave the house without their mobile phones.
People also use mobile phones to solve many of their problems. It is a great channel for business owners like you to offer your solutions via your product and services. Mobile marketing or engaging with your audience in an interactive and relevant manner through a mobile device has the following advantages over traditional forms of marketing:
1. There is a large number of mobile phone users, and their number is rapidly increasing as the price of the phones become affordable, and the monthly payments reach the level of regular wired phones. It is predicted that in the near future, there will be more users of mobile phones than desktop PCs.
2. Through mobile phones, you can send your message that is specific to time, location and even person. You can send your advertising message to a prospective customer who is already in or near your place of business, thus he is more receptive to your message. Messages can be tailored to meet the needs of a person at the exact time that he needs to see the messages.
3. Mobile’s ability to deliver real time advertising can prompt immediate response. For example, you can ask your customer to come within next 30 minutes so they can avail of a 20% discount.
4. Mobile advertising integrates well with offline marketing like outdoor, TV, print, events, and others. On print, for example, you can ask readers to scan a QR code (or 2D code) to go to your site, download your app, opt-in to your mailing list, and more.
5. Ads on mobile phones are much less crowded. A mobile page can only show one or two ads per page. Therefore, these ads get more attention.
6. It is reported that mobile ads have higher clickthroughs (users clicking on the ads) than other forms of online advertising.
7. It is also reported that mobile advertising shows more conversion. People who search for restaurants in mobile are more ready to enter a nearby restaurant, for example.
8. Like other forms of online marketing, the effectiveness of mobile advertising campaign can be easily tracked.
Mobile Marketing Elements
There are many elements that you can use to promote your business on mobile phones. You can get really creative with engaging with your prospective and existing customers. Be aware, however, that mobile marketing is fraught with legal land mines, and you have to make sure that you get users’ permissions when you make contact:
1. Mobile ads – The major advantage of mobile ads over the traditional ones, and even internet ads, is that the user is sent to a site where he can immediately take action like click on a link to call, or send SMS.
Depending on your strategy, you decide on what ad unit or combination of ad units to use. You can use text ads, banner ads, audio ads (inserted in audio content), or rich media ads (multimedia ads that expand to full screen) on mobile internet pages. They can appear appended on text messages, MMS messages or mobile pages, the start or end of a video or audio clip, or when pages or apps are loading, within mobile apps, and so on. Also, like on the regular web, you can also display your ad on Google or other search engine’s search results pages.
Mobile search engine ads have the advantage of being optimized for location or geo-targeted. These are called hyper-local ads. One of the leading advertising networks for do-it-yourself mobile advertising is Admob.
Mobile Ad example
2. Mobile landing page – A landing page is a page on your site where you take your customer when they click on your link from an ad. A landing page should be optimized in such a way that shows up well on mobile devices.
Upon landing on this page, your customer is enticed to take action after reading your page, such as buy your product or enter information for you to gather leads. In contrast to a regular website, your mobile landing page should be clean, swift-loading, and the whole page should be visible without your user scrolling horizontally. Therefore, you make your customer convert using very few words. It can make use of Click to Call or email opt-ins.
Example of a Mobile Landing Page with a call to action
3. Mobile Coupon – This is a type of coupon that you don’t have to cut or print, but just show on your mobile phone. Coupons incentivize your customers to buy, as well as to opt-in to your email or SMS marketing.
Example of a Mobile Coupon that gets your customer to try your product
4. Click to Call – Through mobile advertising or other promotions, you can drive your audience to your mobile landing page. On this landing page, you can highlight your phone number, much like highlighting a link to your web page. When your customer clicks on your phone number, your number is automatically dialed, and you get connected with your customer.
Example of a Click to Call button you can place in your mobile page.
5. Maps – Maps from Google maps and other Mobile apps let people know where you are located, especially if they are near your place of business. When you have claimed your listing in Google Maps, your place of business appear in maps searches. Your map location links to a places page where you can put details about your business, and more.
Clicking your Business Name in Google maps sends customers to your Places Page
6. SMS – On offline media such as billboards, print ads, posters, and other places, you can ask people to text a mobile keyword on a short code, for example “Text Pizza to 45324” to win a free pizza. This is a great way to get leads. When your customer sends the code to the SMS number and indicating clearly on what he’s opting in, you can send future text messages to him about special offers and new products, for example.
Other uses of SMS include couponing, asking for votes, launching trivia programs, sending information and text alerts, triggering interactive calls, and more.
One advantage of SMS or Text is that it can entice immediate action. Ninety five percent of people receiving text messages open them up and usually within minutes.
Example of an SMS message you can send when your customer opts in
7. Multimedia Message Service (MMS) – also referred to as picture messaging or video messaging. It is similar to text messaging, but instead of text you send multimedia objects. With MMS, you can tell a story through entertaining and informative images, audio, video or rich text. You can also embed links that sends your audience to call services or a page with more information. Couponing via MMS involves compelling pictures, sounds and videos.
Example of Multimedia Message Service (MMS)
8. QR Code – This is a printed code which is a 2D image. You can print your QR code on anything, or even show it on a screen. QR codes can be found on business (like restaurant) entrances, posters, postcard, publications and many other places. When scanned on the mobile phone using a QR code reader app, the code transfers information to the mobile phone.
With QR Codes, you can share your URL and take the user directly to your site, your address for instant direction, social media accounts, or multimedia content, such as videos or images.
You can print your QR Code anywhere to transfer message to mobile phones
9. Location based social networking – Through the mobile devices GPS, you can do location-based promotions that take advantage of social networking and rewards users when they “check-in” on your venue. Examples of this are Foursquare, Facebook Places and Gowalla.
This is a the Foursquare screen in a mobile phone
10. Mobile Email – You can send marketing email to your customers who opt-in via ads, SMS, or other mobile advertising and promotion efforts.
Email marketing work great too in mobile devices. Make sure your customer opts in.
11. Voice (Interactive Voice Response or Call to Voice Mail) – Simply, IVR is automating your voice communication. It is not limited to an automated answering machine prompting your customer to press 1 for support. IVRs can also be used for setting appointments, sales assistance on location, do voice-interactive promotion, information requests, automated ordering, and more.
12. Apps – You can create your own app that users find useful, and promoting your brand. It can contain elements such as text updates or RSS feeds , multimedia, games, calculator, photo galleries, a little shop, and more. With Apple Apps you have to be approved for Apple before you can make it available in their App Market.
There are thousands of mobile apps competing for people’s attention