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Most people today have a mobile phone by their side most of the day. This is the most personal platform available for customer calls to action. People are out and about these days and have a lot on their minds; the ability to easily use mobile whenever desired combined with today's increased device functionality streamlines the purchasing process, which leads to greater conversion rates compared to any other method.
Marketing strategies should include the mobile channel to engage customers and drive sales. This is true even for the home-based business. On the local level, brick and mortar businesses implementing a mobile campaign will just about be able to lead people right through their front doors and to specific products of interest.
Digital marketing is the practice of promoting products and services using digital distribution channels (Radio, TV, Internet, Mobile) to reach consumers in a timely, relevant, personal and cost-effective manner. There are 2 different forms of digital marketing. Pull digital marketing in which the user seeks out and selects (pulls) the content from a site and. push marketing, which involves both the marketer (creator of the message) as well as the recipients (the user). The marketer has to push (send) the messages to the user in order for the message to be received. Examples of push digital marketing include Email, SMS, MMS and RSS. For a very effective marketing campaign push and pull message marketing should be used in concert along with traditional channels that promote calls to action.
MMS (Multimedia Message Service) mobile marketing enables streaming video, flash, and advanced capabilities and can contain a timed slide show of images, text, audio and video. This technology enhances the users experience and will lead to more click-through rates.
Blue-tooth systems which offer "hot spot" areas are also being deployed. These offer content-management system with a Blue-tooth distribution function. This technology has the advantages that it is permission-based, has higher transfer speeds and is also a radio-based technology and can therefore not be billed. Geo-fencing is another technique that can also be used to trigger mobile ads and special messages to users as they enter or exit an area like a stadium.
The migration into the mobile advertising market has been highlighted by Google's acquisition of Ad Mob and Apple's purchase of Quattro Wireless. Brand names are in hot pursuit of this personal technology medium.
The Rapidly Increasing Mobile Trend
There has always been a demand among consumers for more technologically advanced products that simplify our lives and facilitates the delivery of information as evidenced by mainstream media methods that have gone from print materials to radio to TV to computers to laptops to cell phone and now to smart mobile devices.
Why mobile needs to be in your in your arsenal of marketing resources
- Google's new mantra is "Mobile First"
- Mobile device use is already 5 times more than the Internet
- Apple recently sold more than 2 million iPhones
- 160,000 Droid smart phones are activated every day
- $6.2 Billion were spent by consumers on apps this year (Gartner)
- The US Mobile Web has been growing over 2% month over month. (Nielsen)
- More than half of all Internet connections today are through smart phones
- 91% of Americans keep their cell phone within 3ft of them
Increasing Usage of Handheld Devices
Email, mobile web browsing and social networking are increasingly seeing usage on handheld devices. Over the past few years SMS (Short Message Service) that is a one-way text message sent via cell phone has become a legitimate advertising channel and it is the most popular branch of the Mobile Marketing industry. In fact data indicate that people favor receiving timely opt-in text messages. These messages can be 160 characters in length and include links to mobile optimized websites or application downloads to help create more effective and measurable calls to action.
E-mail can also be used to inform customers about opt in text message programs. Or an email can be triggered as a result of a text message, to provide additional details around the call to action or fulfill an information request.
Mobile Programs also often include desktop and mobile web use that enables customers to directly provide their permission to receive text message communications by completing forms on-line. Web visits could also be triggered as a result of a text message announcing specials, prizes or incentives for completing surveys and questionnaires.
Mobile programs could also include social networks (Twitter, Face book, Linked-In, My-Space) where businesses can utilize their company's profile to promote mobile programs and initiate opt-in permissions for text message communications. Incentive marketing promotions can also be listed to encourage people to forward texting programs to their contacts.
Mobile and Main Street
Many cell phone networks are starting to offer Location-based services (LBS) as a way to send custom advertising and other information to cell-phone subscribers based on their current location. Laser focused tracking is possible down to the block and demographic targeting down to the make and model of the phone your prospect is looking at as they click your ad. Companies such as Foursquare, Gowalla and even Google Place pages are all developing innovative ways to connect with potential local customers.
Augmented reality systems are also in development that combines the physical real world with enhanced computer generated imagery. When combined with GPS and the cell phone camera people will be able to just point their phone at a specific location and get real time directions or other information like local restaurant reviews. Battery manufactures are also hard at work using nanotechnology to improve run time and recharge times. They are also developing alternative charging methods all in an effort to support the increasing demands placed on batteries.
Mobile presents an amazing opportunity for "main street" businesses because it will be as if they were walking around town with the prospect and leading them right into their business and right to the very product, service or meal they are looking for.
Revenue Producing Benefits
Businesses can now stay in touch with mobile users through various techniques resulting in improved efficiency with revenue producing benefits. We are on the crest of an exponentially increasing trend of mobile use and marketing through this channel is still new so there is little competition out there. There are simple very cost effective, turnkey systems available right now for anyone who wants to promote their business or who may be interested in starting one that easily lends itself to mobile commerce, such as an affiliate marketing program.
Small businesses can quickly kick off a simple mobile strategy almost immediately by using ultra cheap mobile ads utilizing specially designed "squeeze pages" that fit on a mobile device screen and only allow the user to either check out the product or exit the offer. They cannot "surf" around for alternatives. There are also very new mobile only CPA marketing networks and special You Tube for mobile video applications. All this combined with a targeted email campaign is generating skyrocketing conversion rates for those using them. Businesses that seize the moment will be riding this hi-tech tsunami wave straight to the bank.