No, I don't mean people driving billboards around town. I mean reaching consumers and clients via mobile phone. This is typically referred to as Mobile Marketing but I have seen a number of people calling it Mobile Advertising lately. There are a number of different forms of Mobile Marketing; SMS/Text Message marketing, mobile optimized web pages and mobile applications are the three most prominent.
While each form of mobile marketing has it's own advantages and disadvantages and all of them claim to have a higher redemption rates, the one thing about mobile marketing that can't be refuted is that it's use is increasing. It seems to be in a position similar to email marketing in the late '90s and early 2000's, on the cusp of becoming a mainstay in most marketing strategies.
Already we are seeing many major brands and small businesses promoting some sort of loyalty program involving text messaging. Major music labels are selling music via mobile optimized web pages. Software companies are releasing programs solely designed for the mobile device. Television shows are using SMS to generate revenue through premium messaging charges for interactive voting. Politicians are galvanizing supporters in moments through mobile alerts.
Mobile marketing has two incredible advantages over other advertising and marketing mediums:
- People carry their mobile phones with them – so being timely and ensuring the message gets to the recipient is a sure thing! (It also comes with responsibility, of course.)
- Having a customer opt-in to mobile marketing provides you with a direct connection with their mobile phone number.
One great example of using this medium is with a real estate mobile strategy. We provide real estate agents with placards to put on their property where potential buyers text message a number for additional details about the property as well as a virtual tour. At the same time the buyer has opted in and receives the details, the real estate agent is also notified of the request and the potential buyer's mobile phone number! We even enhance some of the accounts with a personally recorded voice call from the agent.
This provides the buyer with all the information they need – as well as provides the real estate agent with a means to contact and engage the buyer. Putting out photocopies on a yard sign doesn't allow that level of engagement!
So the question is, what are you doing to take advantage of mobile marketing and mobile channels? What mobile marketing initiatives is your company launching? If you are a marketing agency, is Mobile Marketing in your portfolio? It should be!