20 Aug Mobile Marketing for Business – The Time is Now!
It’s no secret that mobile phones are increasing in usage and capabilities. The mobile revolution is truly upon us, both as consumers and business owners. Major brands have already begun to experience real time engagement by developing marketing campaigns targeting consumers via mobile devices and tablets. Mobile marketing for business is now critical to success. The article, “Marketing in the Mobile Moment 2013,” provides a helpful infographic explaining the importance of having a mobile marketing plan. It includes interesting statistics about: Mobile Mobility, Consumer Habits, Location, M-Commerce, and Social Networking trends.
For example, did you know that 57% of smartphone users start researching a product on their phone before purchasing? Also, no one leaves home without a cell phone and/or tablets and they are becoming increasingly within arm’s reach of every consumer.
It is important to understand what mobile marketing is in a broad sense, as well as why mobile web marketing is important. A non-profit organization and industry leader, the Mobile Marketing Association, describes mobile marketing as: “…a set of practices that enable organizations to communicate and engage with their audience in an interactive and relevant manner through any mobile device or network.”
In other words, mobile connects the dots across all marketing mediums. By developing a proactive mobile strategy, you can reduce your overall costs and increase business with both prospects and customers.
Let’s explore the benefits and challenges faced with developing a mobile marketing strategy:
• A mobile list of buyers adds value to the worth of your business if you wish to sell it.
• A good relationship can be built by offering valuable information in addition to mobile customer only discounts and specials.
• Low cost distribution system versus cost to acquire a lead is attractive.
• Owners rarely turn off their cell phones or tablets, allowing you to reach them 24/7, with impulse driven campaigns.
- Consumers become frustrated with your business if you do not provide a seamless mobile experience from your blog.
- Your list must be kept current. This requires a process to ensure new customer numbers are acquired and added to the system regularly.
- There must be planning to schedule distribution of messages.
- Sending text messages to customers without opt-in permission can get your distribution account shut down if too many spam complaints are received.
- You can face legal issues if terms are severely violated
Again, if your site makes it difficult for mobile users to take action, then you are losing money. Period.
Imagine a potential customer searching Google with her mobile phone for a business like yours decides to visit your site. What she sees on her mobile phone is a poorly formatted website and she cannot take action. You just lost a sale!
If you are already spending money advertising your business online and a mobile user clicks on your PPC ad, you just paid for the click and lost the sale because he experienced difficulty trying to take action on a website that is not mobile friendly. (It is advisable to turn off your PPC ads for mobile display until you have a mobile ready solution).
Mobile Marketing Strategy Tips
It is important to understand that user behavior is different when using a mobile device, as opposed to a computer. Mobile users are on the go and are looking to take action, not conduct research like they would if using a home computer. Thus, a mobile responsive blog requires specific information and features that must load quickly.
Many mobile users do not subscribe to unlimited data plans and mobile networks are not as fast as an Internet connection. Accordingly, a mobile responsive blog should not contain the graphics and content that a regular site usually provides.
Core information needed on a mobile responsive site should be call to action driven and include the following:
• Clearly Visible Contact information
• Location of your business (Google Maps) and Direction Capability
• Tap-to-call feature which doesn’t require dialing
• Instant access to a coupon or specials
• List of services and about information
NOTE: This Google tool shows you how your site looks on a smartphone, and provides a free report with personalized recommendations tailored to how your business can build a more mobile-friendly experience. Go to: http://www.howtogomo.com.
Restructuring your Current Blog
Having your blog redesigned to be mobile responsive can be an investment and should be considered as part of an overhaul to your site. If you decide to invest in this approach, ensure that the click-to-call feature and all of the functionally listed above is incorporated.
Third Party Hosted Solutions
There are third party solutions where you can design a mobile-ready site online. If you select this solution, make sure they provide you with browser detection code for your current website. This code monitors your traffic and acts like a traffic cop. Internet traffic will remain on your blog and traffic from a mobile network will automatically be sent to your mobile ready site. What you want to avoid is using a button on your current blog that requires a manual click to access your mobile website because mobile users may not be able to see the button and you may lose them. Be aware that you do not own this site and have no control.
Integrated Mobile Solution on your Own Domain
You can have a mobile ready blog set up in one of two ways. The first way is to have a sub-domain created on your current website and install a mobile-ready blog. For example, if your domain is www.MyWebSite.com, then your mobile site is m.MyWebSite.com. The browser detection code is installed as described above.
Registering a .mobi Domain Name
You can register a .mobi domain name instead of installing the mobile website on your current site. It works the same way as described above, however, it is on a separate domain and you own it.
Both solutions work well and major brands are testing both strategies with their mobile presence. Some question spending the money on a .mobi domain. Our recommendation is to invest in the .mobi domain and use it in conjunction with your current website. There are two primary reasons:
1. It is wise to register all your major business domain names (.com, .net, .org and .mobi). This protects your business and brand. There is nothing preventing a competitor from registering one of them and using it to compete with you on Page One. Imagine building your brand to the point that people are searching for your business and your competitor is now stealing a portion of those potential customers because he registered one of your available domain names.
2. The rapid transition from computers to mobile devices is undisputed. Current web design may eventually become obsolete and need to be replaced. By building a standard WordPress-based mobile site on a .mobi domain today, you can expand this site as the technology demands to keep you current and competitive while preserving the integrity of your current .com blog. The browser detection code will continue to automatically forward the traffic from your current .com site.
This approach allows you to transition over time as the technology changes, rather than having to build an entirely new site in the future because your current blog can no longer support your business. When you are ready to explore incorporating a mobile solution, it is best to discuss the options with your digital marketing consultant to see which one is the correct mobile solution for your business.
In addition to a mobile responsive website, you can build customer loyalty by incorporating a text message marketing service campaign, as well as offer a mobile application to your customers. The best mobile marketing strategy should still be augmented with building an email customer list – both are important tools for reselling to your current customers.
If you require a mobile marketing consultant, the Niche Dominance digital media marketing strategies can help you. They are designed to evolve with the rapidly changing search engine environment so your business can achieve a competitive advantage in today’s growing competitive landscape. We can also assist you with incorporating an effective mobile responsive website solution to ensure that you are not losing money by not keeping up with mobile search trends.