Across Southeast Asia, the use of mobile advertising is rapidly gaining momentum. eMarketer projected that mobile advertising expenditure in Asia Pacific will reach $6,877 million by 2012. In a region where fixed-line infrastructure is minimal, the penetration of mobile services has skyrocketed. Mobile advertising is about to take off.
While utilizing mailing lists and sending out bulk SMS messages used to be the standard means of advertising on mobile phones, there are now far more effective and engaging means of communicating with the mobile user. Today, marketers are targeting their messages.
Personalized marketing, using behavioral analysis tools, helps you hone your campaign for enhanced response rates. It leads to more successful communication with the consumer, enabling you to open an interactive dialogue with your target audience through a variety of mobile channels.
A campaign that we ran earlier this year with Fox Filmed Entertainment reflects just how effective a cross-channel mobile campaign can be for getting your message out there. With "Ice Age3: Dawn of the Dinosaurs", Fox was looking to drive trailer views and promote awareness prior to the movie's release.
We placed the campaign on the Pudding Media Ad Network and inserted an ad in missed call alert SMS messages sent by the mobile operator. The ads, which were rotated on a daily basis, over a 10-day period, led the mobile users to the movie trailer and generated 1,203,516 impressions for unique users. Of them almost 1 percent (11,980) clicked on the web link to view the trailer, and the response rate was raised to 1.86 percent by a follow-up ad. Most significantly however, approximatly 20,000 users, (1.66 percent of the audience) responded as a result of being forwarded the ad by other users. This goes to illustrate how the virality of the mobile medium allows marketers to swifly and powerfully create buzz and amp up brand recognition.
Here are a few strategies for exploiting the full potential of mobile advertising in the Southeast Asian market:
Strike while the iron is hot: Mobile is still a fresh, new advertising tool that enjoys the novelty factor that online ads enjoyed initially. Marketers can take advantage of this while also benefiting from the familiarity of SMS interaction, which speaks to an audience that, particularly in Asia, communicates predominantly through texting. In the Philippines for example, while only 75 percent of mobile owners use their handset for calls, 100 percent use it for sending SMS messages.
Use the personal touch: A successful campaign achieving maximum ROI demands pin-point targeting of the message, and this can be accomplished by means of behavioral analysis. It allows you to build a detailed profile of mobile users that can provide data ranging from their demographics to their personal interests. The potential tool kit is extensive, including everything from the individual's phone model, location and usage patterns, to CRM and survey data.
Mobilize all channels: Today's handsets are equipped to serve as a one-stop-shop that meets all of a user's communication requirements, all of which can be exploited to introduce the user to your brand. You can engage your mobile user by sending an SMS, with calls to action such as click-to-call, click-to-coupon, click-to-locate and tune-in reminders; or interact with the user via MMS with a rich array of images, audio and video clips. Alternatively you can use image banners and web links in mobile web ads or you can communicate with your customers the instant their phone begins to ring, via audio ads overlaying the ringtone.
Mobile advertising offers you an inexpensive and instantaneous conversion tool that zooms in on your demographic and allows you to reach out to customers in an exciting and innovative way. The bottom line for advertisers is this: If you want to speak directly to the Southeast Asian market, then use a mobile phone!
Ruben Maislos is founder and COO of Pudding Media.