By now you’ve probably heard the term “mobile marketing”, but do you really know what it entails, or more importantly, how you can use it for your business? The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) defines mobile marketing as “the use of wireless media as an integrated content delivery and direct response vehicle within a cross-media marketing communications program.” In simpler terms, mobile marketing involves using mobile devices, such as smartphones or tablets, to deliver your marketing messages. Before we delve into more in-depth mobile marketing strategies, let’s first do a broad overview and examine the basics.
Most websites are designed dynamically for use on a full-sized computer or notebook. Unfortunately, this doesn’t always transfer well to the smaller sized screen of a mobile device. The first step in mobile marketing is to create a mobile version of your website that is clean, simple and easy to navigate. This can be done one of three ways:
- By using an automated system to re-format your existing content
- By using a plug-and-play platform to create an entirely separate mobile version of your website
- By adding a line of code that detects the screen size of visitors to your site
This step of mobile marketing involves claiming your business on various location-based platforms, such as Google Places, Foursquare and Facebook Places. This allows visitors to locate and connect with your business wherever they are, from their mobile devices. You can leverage this method by offering coupons to people that “check in” at your business or to reach people who happen to be on the go in your area and entice them to stop by your business. The more creative you get with this step, the better.
Mobile Ad Campaigns
Mobile ads can be particularly effective in getting results because they are much more defined than traditional advertising campaigns. This is because they allow you to reach prospects that are in your specific area at the very moment they are in need of a product or service. For example, let’s say you own a pizza shop. When someone searches for “pizza restaurants near me” using their mobile device, your mobile marketing campaign will instantly deliver an ad for your shop to that user. Mobile ad campaigns can be purchased on a cost-per-click, cost-per-thousand or cost-per-acquisition basis, depending on your needs and budget.
You’ve probably noticed these funny looking square codes popping up on everything from websites and ads to postcards and flyers. QR codes (short for “quick response”) are designed to be scanned and read by smartphones. They can contain any information you’d like, including coupons and special offers to attract new customers and encourage repeat business. There are a number of sites that allow you to create your own QR code which you can use on just about any marketing material you employ.
In future posts we’ll examine each of these mobile marketing methods in more detail and uncover ways to maximize the potential for each one. In the meantime, if you’re new to the world of mobile marketing, the very first step to understanding it is to use it yourself. Use a payment app to pay for a product or service with your smartphone or check in at your next stop with Facebook Places. Once you experience for yourself how powerful and effective mobile marketing can be, you’ll be ready to implement some of these innovative techniques for your own business.