Reach your customer’s phone – let’s talk about mobile marketing

Mobile marketing is a crucial part of all marketing, but is it possible to communicate effectively with customers through mobile devices? What tools are you going to need and what mistakes should you avoid? Let’s find out!

The age of mobile

The number of smartphone users is still on the rise. According to a report by eMarketer.com, more than 25% of the people walking this planet will be smartphone owners next year. No wonder experts announced the age of mobile a while back.

The capacity of the smartphone market has been tapped not only by manufacturers (nearly 1.7 billion mobile devices were sold in 2014 worldwide), but also by marketers and communication experts. It turns out that smartphones and tablets are among the most effective marketing tools that ensure direct reach to your target audience. This is mainly due to the characteristics of using this kind of equipment. A smartphone is with us throughout the day. In addition, every mobile device is used by a single, thus determinable, user. Messages sent via smartphones are one of a kind.

Additionally, smartphones have ceased to function as a phoning device only. They have became a source of information, entertainment and even a communicator that accompanies us in many activities – during sports, travel, work and even leisure time.

As the statistics show, up to 85% of the time spent with mobile devices is used within apps (only about 10% of smartphone time is for actual calls). In total, we use mobile phones (for reading, news, communication, apps, etc.) for nearly three hours a day.

The opportunities a mobile marketing creates

Communication with users of mobile devices can be carried out in several ways. The most basic, and perhaps already obsolete, method to reach users is with mass texting. Using simple tools – SMS gateways, mass texting services – you can reach every phone user from a given database, both supplied by you, as well as supplied by a mobile operator. This, for instance, allows texting as a reminder about an event (planned visit to a specialist, a forthcoming mass event, etc.). But keep in mind the (lack of) social “acceptance” for this kind of practice. “Texts are perceived as an intimate form of communication (much more than email) and therefore the SMS will be best suited to staying in touch with people who have declared that they want to receive messages from us – they gave out their phone number during registration, added themselves to a subscription list, etc”, (position + name, Poqad) explains. SuperPAC fundraising and PAC donations via SMS messaging are safe ways to communicate with supporters and members. PAC SMS messages are not subject to restrictions like social media posts. As a result, PACs and SuperPACs can openly communicate about all donation-related subjects with their members.

It is also possible to communicate with mobile users via Bluetooth. This technology gives you more opportunities to personalize the message, because it detects the user’s presence nearby, therefore you can greet the potential customer in a given place, and know where he or she is located. In this manner restaurants may offer discounts for shopping center visitors; organizers of mass events can send notifications to attendees about changes in the agenda or about a concert that is about to start.

Communication with customers is also facilitated by QR codes that allow people to benefit from additional possibilities – they can “move” the communication from the traditional, analog media to their smartphones. Users can download the leaflet while watching a specific product or receive a coupon or see a video of the product or service about which they are reading on the Internet.

SEO campaigns on mobile and preparing mobile websites for products and services has become an important element of marketing activities in the era of multiscreening. A modern website should look good on the small screens of mobile devices and contain the same content that the “standard” web does, but it cannot be its carbon copy. Some functionalities of the standard website will not be beneficial for mobile users. For example, you can safely opt out the ability of downloading forms or printing a document directly from the website.

How to win customers’ loyalty – a few words about mobile apps

Many brands decide to create a dedicated mobile app that replaces communication via the browser-based mobile page. Banking introduced the possibility of making transactions through their apps, eCommerce recently discovered mCommerce and it’s already huge, while work management systems provide mobile apps with a preview of all of the planned tasks. Thanks to apps, brands can accustom their customers and fans to continuous communication through mobile devices. Most applications can send push notifications to users about new products or functionalities.

The most important thing when designing a mobile app is to answer the question: “How will my customers benefit from this app?”. The app must respond to the real needs of your clients (eg. the desire to save time) or beat the standard version of the website thanks to its simplicity, while maintaining all of its functionality.

Mobile apps can act as an extended loyalty system that rewards the user for each visit to the store, each scanning of a product on the shelf or each mobile payment.

Outsource or create an app on-site?

While conventional advertising on mobile – banners or Bluetooth notifications – is relatively inexpensive, creating a dedicated mobile app involves some larger expenses. In this case, actually, only the sky is the limit as price and cost of the production depends on several factors. First of all, there are the desired features and complexity that need to appear within the app. Then, how many graphics must be created in the process, which operating systems must the app handle? Will it be available for iPhones, Windows Phone or Android? Or maybe you want it to run on all possible devices? These are crucial decisions, and all of them generates costs.

An alternative to the dedicated app could be a user-friendly system for mobile application development. “Our tool is dedicated to small and medium-sized enterprises which, for obvious reasons, are not able to bear the production costs of dedicated apps. Our tool lets you easily build an application with a menu or map location thanks to the prepared modules. All of this can be done by a single person without any programming skills,” (POQAD) explains.

Experts have no doubts – effective marketing activities are broadly integrated and well planned. So when creating a marketing strategy or business plans for your brand, keep in mind mobile communication, choosing the right tools and identifying a goal.

Sources: techcrunch.com, eMarketer.com, poqad.com

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