Marketers are always looking for new innovations to improve their strategies, but in order to properly accomplish that it is necessary to understand what creates the most effective mobile marketing campaigns. In order for a mobile campaign to be successful, you need to start with traditional marketing fundamentals that can be applied to other media channels. Marketers need to stop worrying about what can be the coolest mobile app, and instead get an accurate understanding of how customers are using these devices on a day-to-day basis. Let's analyze the current reality of mobile and determine key methodologies to best deliver successful mobile marketing campaigns.
The mobile app vs. mobile web debate
Mobile apps are blending with our culture, but let's look at their future vision. In our society, where ease is central, are users really opening up exclusive applications to find and complete specific tasks? Did you know that (according to mobiThinking) one in four mobile apps once downloaded are never used again? So what kinds of applications are consumers are actually using? In order of popularity, Americans are using mobile apps to play games, read news, find locations with maps, connect through social networking, and listen to music. Combine that with the fact that mobile apps are not cross-platform and have very high development prices. To have a strategy in place to push traffic to download the application, marketers really have to determine the ROI of these efforts and ensure KPI targets warrant the expenditure.
Mobile web on the other hand is cross-platform, and is available to not only smartphone devices, but also web enabled feature phones. Studies illustrate that if a user has a bad mobile web experience they are 40 percent more likely to head to a competitive site and 61 percent more likely not to return to the problem site. Mobile web is essential to a solid strategy as consumers are already using web-enabled devices to search on the go, and the odds are that some of your web traffic is already coming from mobile.
Are people really using QR codes?
Currently 30 percent of smartphone users in the U.S. have QR code readers. With that being said, usage of the 2D codes is growing exponentially, but the overall market usage is still quite small. The trick here is working out an integrated marketing strategy by ensuring your customer has the technology available and by providing a substitute for those users that don't have access (like a short code implementation with SMS or MMS). The good news here is that if you have a mobile enabled site, creating a QR code implementation is simple and cost effective. If your customers are smartphone users who are technically inclined, it might make sense, but ensure your non-QR code using customers also have a feasible method to recover information.
Mobile messaging basics
Mobile messaging is a persistent mobile marketing platform and has high market penetration for mobile users. Every mobile campaign should consider messaging for the following reasons:
- Messaging has high market penetration rates.
- Messaging is a push strategy, since messaging content is not user initiated once an opt-in is obtained. This means that the marketer has control over when information is being sent to the user, and it provides marketers with a lot more power over the timing and content of their campaigns.
- Messaging content is no longer limited to text. Recent progresses in MMS technologies are making this delivery channel a contender to send rich content beyond simple 160-character text to the majority of devices. This new method gives marketers the authority to deliver images, audio, and video for an engaging customer experience across platforms and carriers.
As brands work to monetize content through mobile media outlets, marketers need to be mindful of not only emerging trends but also applying the same marketing fundamentals to mobile as we do to every other channel. Begin by understanding the way your customers behave, layer key mobile strategies over that core, and then finally focus on the larger ideas once a solid base is in place. Using this procedure will not only confirm a long term benefit on investments for your company, but your customer will also be able to access the information they are looking for while on the move.
Cezar Kolodziej is president, CEO, and co-founder of Iris Mobile.
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