Over the past decade our lives have been altered forever as a direct result of technology. No longer do we rely on phone calls in order to communicate with one another when we can instant message, email or text message each other in mere seconds. Although advances in information technology mean that our cell phones are becoming increasingly more expensive as we become lured in by the features of the latest smart phones, communicating with one another has never been more efficient or cost effective.
As a direct result of the popularity of cell phones across the globe, it seems only right that businesses are utilizing this gadget in order to increase their sales and brand awareness. Although the combination of marketing and technology may cause many business owners to become anxious as to the costs, mobile marketing can be incredibly cost effective. However, in order for mobile marketing to be truly beneficial to your business, it is essential that it is executed correctly.
In some regards, mobile marketing is a somewhat extension of email marketing. Businesses can send personalized and effective messages to their clients in mere seconds in order to help promote a specific aspect of their business. One of the main advantages of mobile marketing over email marketing is that a text message goes straight to the recipients phone, rather than their email inbox and as many of us are unashamedly glued to our phones at all times, this makes retrieval of your message almost instant.
Similar to any other aspect of marketing or promotion, you firstly need to understand your target market in order to utilize mobile marketing effectively. Although text message marketing is effective, it will only work if you message the right customers. Some organizations have made the mistake of using SMS’s to advertise to the masses rather than targeting those will be most interested. Mobile marketing with text messages will allow you to target the consumer based on demographics and purchasing behaviors. For example, sending out messages to frequent customers will do much more for your sales that sending out a message to those who live within a different state to your place of business or may have purchased from you as a one-off.
One of the most advantageous aspects of mobile marketing is that more often than not, the consumer will have responded to a previous marketing tactic in order to be placed on your mailing list, which shows their interest in you. However, although there is interest there, it is important to not focus on hard-selling via your text message marketing. Aggressive advertising, similar to excessive advertising is a sure-fire way to lose customers as it may come across as desperate or spamming. In order for mobile messaging to be effective, you must have a solid message you wish to depict to your target market and only look to contact them in conjunction to a specific event or promotion. Furthermore, you can also use mobile marketing as a method of staying in contact with your customers. For example, if you are holding a special event, you can send a message which requires the customer to reply ‘YES’ or ‘NO’ if they wish to attend. This is a much cheaper method of advertisement compared to cold-calling or distributing leaflets, for example. In regards to sales, you can also help to increase these by using SMS messaging to provide discounts to loyal customers. For example, food chain McDonalds witnessed a 25% increase in response to their text messaging campaign which helped their sales, following their “send an SMS to Santa and receive your gift in seconds” promotion. More than 1.5 million people participated in a 5 week period. Using promotional drink cups that displayed unique codes, customers could send a text message when in the restaurant, with each code providing them with a physical prize.
Similar to less technological aspects of marketing, mobile marketing can also be utilized in order to improve your business, in particular, your customer relationships. Text message marketing does not need to be used in the same way we use text messaging as a social form of communication. Along with using text message marketing to promote or ‘sell’ your products, you can also utilize it by asking your consumers what they think regarding products, trends and so forth through polls. This can help make consumers feel more responsive and open to receiving further text messages from you and will help to build on your relationships with them which is key to boosting your sales.
As the various aspects of business including marketing evolve, it is essential that we keep our business ahead of the game in order to stay one step ahead of our competitors. By utilizing new and technological marketing methods, such as mobile marketing, we will not only witness a change in our ability to communicate with our consumers, but will also benefit from a more efficient and effective method of communication which in turn, can help boost those all important sales.