As technology continues to advance, marketers have kept up with the new options that these progressions create. Among the most popular of these new options is mobile marketing.
The rise of SMS (short message service) has led to the increasing popularity of placing marketing messages on a mobile phone. Although it originally received negative press coverage, due to the amount of spam that found its way into this medium, it has been well accepted in the past few years. This is due in large to the fact that the carriers have set new guidelines which have served to decrease the amount of spam carried across this medium.
The most popular method of utilizing this service is to solicit the phone number of customers, or potential customers, and then send them special offers or discounts in a text message. For instance, a restaurant may ask patrons to opt in during their most recent visit. They then send this patron a special discount, via text message, as part of their overall advertising campaign.
One of the most significant advantages of this method is that it can be very responsive. If the restaurant is having a particularly slow evening, it can send out a dining special to increase traffic that day. It also can be used to develop a personalized relationship with the customer by increasing the level of communication.
This form of mobile marketing has greatly benefited by the increased number of mobile phone plans which offer unlimited text messages. One of the early challenges to the industry was that individuals had to pay their normal text rate for the advertisement. As the number of unlimited texting plans have grown this had decreased that barrier for the medium. Consumers have also positively responded to the fact that most messages require them to consent prior to receiving them. In this way they are able to control which companies they receive solicitations from.
Another trend that is benefiting the mobile marketing industry is that almost twenty-five million Americans are able to receive videos on their mobile devices. This allows advertisers to produce and distribute content rich messages in video format and transmit these videos to customers who have opted in. As tablets increase in popularity this method is anticipated to expand further.
The advertisers are excited about this medium, as the third screen (mobile devices as opposed to television and movie theaters) offers customers who have already expressed an interest in the product or service. This allows their videos to be significantly targeted and campaigns optimised – making the mobile channel more efficient than other many mediums, including web based advertising.
Whether you’re a big company wanting to send out a sleek branded video campaign, or a local business wanting to cheaply promote your products to customers via text, the mobile marketing channel is ripe with potential.
Roo Sadegi is a marketing specialist based in London. He spends much of his time writing and advising on new marketing and mobile technology.