Discover The Power Of Mobile Marketing In Your Business
It’s not often one gets the opportunity to get in on the ground floor of one of the trends of the century, but it’s important to realize now that mobile marketing is still new enough to allow you to do so. So what, exactly, is it – and what do you need to know before you can decide how much to integrate mobile marketing into your sales funnel and overall business plan?
Before you dismiss mobile marketing as just another fad, you might want to consider this: Earth’s inhabitants have been estimated at around 6 billion but there are almost 5 billion documented, active mobile subscriptions. (Compare that with only 1.2 billion Personal Computers on the planet!)
That’s almost 70% of the planet’s inhabitants with access to a mobile device of some sort.
What they don’t tell you is that a large segment of your potential buying market may be on mobile – but not on computers. If you’re depending solely on the internet via traditional websites to reach your target market, you may actually be missing your most lucrative segment.
Mobiles are already in a fair way to surpassing computers as the way people communicate across the globe, and it doesn’t take an industry expert to confirm that.
Even in third world countries, a mobile phone is usually far more affordable and attainable than a computer.
Mobile users are growing at a rate even the analysts didn’t predict, as late as a year ago. Many mobile users – former “computer addicts” – are abandoning or barely using PC’s at home in favor of mobiles. Social media such as Facebook and Twitter are largely responsible for this global shift – both are easily accessible and updateable via mobile. Plus new search functionality and secure purchasing ability, handy apps and integration with GPS have increased mobile popularity off the map.
People naturally follow the path of least resistance, and it’s far easier to access your mobile while sitting in the back seat of a car than to wait until you finally get home (by which time, the urge to look something up may have subsided, or been forgotten altogether).
Mobile devices are:
- Time saving
- Inexpensive (compared to a computer)
- Convenient (allowing for use during those “dead” times when it just isn’t practical to whip out a laptop – on the subway, in a car while driving, at a business function or sports game, while shopping, etc. etc.)
In short, if you’re involved in any type of internet marketing – business to business, retail, service-based, whatever – you need to make sure (yesterday) that your content is mobile-friendly.
Why Should I Optimize for Mobile?
And there are several more reasons, such as having immediate, real-time connection in contacting clients and customers. This feeling of privileged access does much to cement customer loyalty while simultaneously creating a habit – that of relying on you via their mobiles for up-to-the-minute information, assistance and even entertainment. (Feeling like you’re actually talking to someone is far more gratifying and reassuring than reading static releases, or five-hour-old Facebook posts you had to dig and search for.)
You can also integrate mobile marketing with your existing marketing efforts more easily than you might think, by using it to drive people to your websites and blogs as well as make sure you’re immediately available when they comment on Facebook, for example.
You can track your results and generate leads you might have missed if you had stuck to relying strictly on your target market’s potentially limited PC time.
Mobile marketing allows you instantly to create connection and engagement, the two most important factors in any sales or marketing venue.
But all of these factors pale beside the most powerful reason you need to optimize your content for mobile marketing… it’s natural.
People naturally follow the path of least resistance. In spite of all the common sense and good intentions in the world, every time, they’ll end up going for:
- What is easiest
- What is more fun
- What gives a fast return almost instantly
- What is most engaging
And mobile devices provide all these natural advantages. You’re tapping into what people are already using – and naturally prefer to use.
Getting the Drop on Competitors
Remembering this tendency of people to avoid learning curves and go with what is natural, it shouldn’t be a surprise to discover that many of your competitors are not yet discovering the mobile marketing advantage. They’re going with what feels easiest to them – sticking with what they already know when it comes to marketing systems.
The good news is, the “learning curve” you’ll experience integrating mobile marketing into your current sales funnels and business plan isn’t half as complex as you might fear. Basically, if you can send a text message or leave a voice message, you can take advantage of mobile marketing.
- Generate leads
- Increase a feeling of immediacy and intimacy
- Track your results much more easily than you can with traditional internet marketing
- Blend it into your existing efforts to reach a segment of your market that:
- You currently don’t have access to
- Prefers mobile contact
You can also usually:
- Easily import your existing list using a simple Excel spreadsheet
- Set up new lists, with simple opt-in options (even double opt ins)
A Word of Caution
Having new mobile list members opt in is especially important, since you need documentation that your list members did indeed sign up voluntarily. The CAN-SPAM act needs to be observed when you’re marketing with mobiles just as stringently as it does when you’re marketing via computer.
Fortunately, the tracking options available for your mobile take the problematic element out of making this happen.
Mobile marketing allows you to optimize your content in multiple ways. You can create or take advantage of widgets; create or utilize mobile apps; and fine-tune location-based marketing to draw extra streams of income through local custom.
There are two main ways you can choose to approach your audience:
- SMS Text Messaging
- Voice Messaging
You can use either or both, depending on how your subscribers prefer to be contacted via mobile.
The main thing to remember: Keep it focused and relevant – and, whatever you do, don’t overdo it! (Too many messages, no matter how “relevant”, will quickly start to feel like spam as your irritated customer is interrupted yet again.)
The key is to always keep in mind what your subscriber wants to hear about – not what you feel is important. And that involves understanding the mobile mindset…
How to Approach Mobile Users
Remember everything you were taught about the way internet users interact, and how different it is from the way newspaper readers react? How internet users “scan”, looking for headlines, bullet points or subheads that catch their attention?
Well, one factor overlooked by many when it comes to mobile users is that this class of user has put “scanning” on steroids. Your content needs to be shorter and more to-the-point than ever to attract mobile users.
You can blame this scattered attention factor for people’s feelings of “information overload”. Your target audience is being bombarded with more and more information online. If you can adapt your content to nuggets of highly-focused information rather than whole meals, you can catch your target prospect’s attention via your mobile. You can do it quickly… and timing, of course, will be a key element.
The main point to remember is that you still need people to opt in, either specifically or tacitly (by voluntarily providing their mobile numbers during your sign up process).
Optimizing for the Tiny Screens
If you’ve been feeling anxiety about optimizing all your mobile content for the small screen – don’t. It used to be, in the early days, that one had to test carefully to make sure parts of a web page weren’t disappearing off screen, but not only are most WordPress blog themes now automatically adaptable to mobiles, but social media are pre-adapted to mobile screens.
Autoresponders and Mobile messaging services are also automatically optimized so that you can utilize video, graphics, text and audio to enhance your mini-messages.
And if technology still gives you the heebie-jeebies, remember you can outsource set up and management – there are many competent Virtual Assistants who specialize in mobile marketing: Indeed, who treat mobilization as just another facet of autoresponder set up.
Mobile Apps and Widgets
One easy way to hook your subscribers involves creating a widget or app that is perfect for their needs – one they instantly start to depend on. You can create these yourself with very little technical knowledge by using one of the service companies allowing you to “click and create”.
You can also outsource your app – and if you’re already thinking of the app you’d like to create, perhaps because you’ve heard niche members complaining “if only there was something that would allow you to” (or “help you to”) then you can be sure that’s an app waiting to happen!
One other danger of mobile marketing lies in expenses you can incur if you’re not clear on the charges for voice messaging and texting. You need to know:
- What your mobile plan covers
- What your marketing message provider’s services cover
- Hidden fees
But mobile marketing becomes especially something you’ll want to seriously consider if you market with any sort of location-based tie-in. You can take advantage of local messaging rates to create a new stream of income.
It’s also particularly suited for B2B (business to business). Clients will feel you have your finger on the pulse of their industry as well as being reassured by your accessibility. You’re messaging people who already feel that their mobile phone is their live connection to their market: These are not the type of people who wait to get home at night to check messages on a computer.
You can also keep your subscribers updated with relevant mobile messages about what you’re doing – for example, if you’re closing a deal they’re anxious about, or giving them new information on project with a tight deadline. When you consider the way mobiles are used in business today, it’s no wonder people turn to them first – not to their computers. The average entrepreneur already connects by mobile.
So use this need to “keep moving” to your advantage. At least look into adding mobile marketing to your mix and poll your existing subscribers, to make sure you’re not missing an opportunity that will become tragically clear in hindsight. And if you don’t yet have a list, add an optional textarea field for their mobile numbers in all your sign up and opt in forms.
Mobile marketing is still in its early days yet – but it won’t stay there for long at the rate its use is growing.
You owe it to yourself, your customers and your personal goals to at least check it out!