I will separate this into two parts. One will be geared toward the companies, and the other one will be more for the consumers and hope you will find it interesting.
Example for companies: How to utilize the mobile technologies and mix them in your promotions. “Text DEALS to 63566 to get coupon”.
Different mobile marketing strategies
Companies can use many different strategies when it comes to mobile marketing. Some of those strategies are MMS campaigns, Mobile Website Builder and Location-Based Marketing.
Mobile Website Builder
With the mobile website builder companies can create a mobile website easily, without the expensive and consuming development.
Video and picture messaging or MMS will help companies send their customers a picture of their product, since this will give the customers a better idea on what the company is offering. This way, the consumer may decide to buy their product, either on the mobile phone or go directly to the store where it’s sold.
Location-based mobile marketing
With Location-based marketing, companies can send targeted messages to customers in a specific geo-fence. For example, a restaurant using location-based marketing may send out a 10% coupon for lunch for people in a 10 mile radius of the restaurant at 11pm. The people that are around this restaurant, who are probably already looking for a place to sit and eat lunch, may decide to go check this restaurant out. This is a perfect marketing technique for slow times and days, like Mondays and Tuesdays.
Also, companies can use other features, such as mobile coupons, mobile surveys, text-to-win, and mobile sweepstakes.
Implementing traditional and mobile marketing
“Smart retailers and brands are using mobile to incorporate into their traditional marketing, in-store signing, heavier use of mobile banner ads with clearer calls-to-action on the banner landing page,” said Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis, Atlanta. “Another way that they have done it well is by increasing the number of consumers that opt into their texting campaigns, join their social groups for updates, and join companies’ loyalty programs.”(Mobile Marketer)
According to Bloomberg.com, internet sales will grow 17% from last year, and a record 10% of all retail shopping have to be done online in the last two months of 2012.
With the use of the mobile technology, companies will create brand engagement, and a better call-to-action.
Social media marketing
Social media sites are also an important internet tool companies can use to engage their customers. Sites like Facebook and Twitter increase in users every single day. Those social media sites can be crucial for consumers to find out about the company’s deals and promotions during the holiday season, and also lead them to downloading the mobile app of that company.
For example, Amazon’s sales rose 51% during Cyber Monday, according to ChannelAdvisor Inc, and Ebay has risen 57% in sales since last year. (Bloomberg.com) It is clear that the increase in mobile shopping is benefiting mostly sites like Amazon and Ebay, but all businesses can benefit from mobile marketing and consumer engagement through brand introduction and communication with the consumer.
What others are doing?
Specifically for the Holiday Season, Amazon has introduced a very interesting app called “Price Check”. With that app, consumers can compare online prices on items they see in the store and find the best deal on something they want. If the price in the store is the same as online, which generally it is not, and rather it is higher, the consumer can buy the product in the store, so there’s no shipping costs or waiting period. Also, with this app, a consumer can put the product in a virtual shopping cart or buy on the spot.
Other retailers like Macy’s, Dillard’s, Walmart, Target, etc., are using mobile apps and other tools like mobile coupons to attract shoppers, both online and in the store. During Black Friday, for example, Walmart and Target had posted online their “Black Friday Map” so consumers could directly head over to the section that most interests them.
Example for consumers: Seek out text deals, sign up to text alerts and specials, text to win games.
“There is more adaption of using mobile coupons at the point-of-sale register, making coupons much more portable and usable by the consumer in store,” said Ms. Troutman. “Lastly, companies have gotten better at organizing mobile throughout their organization, as part of their basic consumer touch points.”(Mobile Marketer)
More and more people nowadays are getting used to the idea of opting-in to different mobile apps and especially when it comes to deals. Consumers can easily search for mobile apps that interest them. Also, when people sign up for a certain service of a store or a brand, they will start receiving mobile coupons and promotions. Like Ms. Troutman points out, mobile coupons are much more portable and usable by the consumers in the store, so this will create even more Holiday traffic.
Also, when brands and companies use the Location-based marketing, consumers will be able to get deals to places close to them, increasing the chance that they will enter the business or store. So, in a way, it is a win-win situation. Consumers will find the gifts they are looking for, and stores will get traffic.
Once people have opted-in to receive coupons and promotions, they can start receiving SMS and MMS group messaging. 98% of mobile phones are able to receive and send SMS or Text messages. Most of the phones nowadays are also able to receive MMS messages, which are picture and video messages. Those MMS messages will give a better idea to the consumer of what to expect once they get to the store. Again, this is a win-win situation!
With the short URL, or a mobile website of the business, consumers can view the company’s website right from their smart phones or tablets, which now more than 50% of Americans own.
Those are some ways that consumers and companies are able to use Mobile Marketing along with other Social Media and online tools.
Mobile marketing is useful both to consumers and companies, and those companies who do not use mobile as a way to promote their business are light years behind their competitors.