J.J. Rosen: Marketing via mobile devices is a game changer

Marketing via mobile devices is a game changer

September 8, 2013
by J.J. Rosen for The Tennessean

June 29, 2007, is the most significant date in the history of marketing.

In ancient times (like seven years ago), businesses small and large had a fairly proven and stable set of tools they could use to market their products and services. While the life of a marketing professional was not necessarily easy, most had become well versed in combining traditional and digital media to successfully spread the word about their brands.

Then, on June 29, 2007, there was a revolution of sorts as Apple released its first iPhone. It proved to be a catalyst for spawning a new era of personal mobile devices throughout the world. Six years later, with more than a billion people using smartphones and tablets, mobile marketing is a critical channel in any successful marketing plan.

Marketing via mobile devices is a game changer in much the same way TV was a game changer in the 1940s: Both leverage technology as a medium for businesses to build their brands and make sales.

Mobile technology presents huge opportunities for businesses in that they can leverage a customer’s smartphone to make their marketing pitch in a timely, targeted, interactive and measurable way like never before.

If you have not yet integrated mobile into your marketing plan, you are not alone. Combining creativity and technology in a marketing plan is not easy. The key to success is to take advantage of the mobile marketing lessons others have already learned and apply them to your own products and services.

Here’s some of what we’ve learned about mobile marketing:

Your website must be mobile-friendly: Multiple research reports show that about half of smartphone/tablet users will not contact or make a purchase from a non mobile-friendly website.

Given the trend toward using mobile as the primary method of accessing the Web, a non mobile-friendly website can cause severe damage to a company’s brand and sales. Recent studies have shown a 44 percent increase in mobile transactions, so now is the time to “go mobile.”

• Google search on mobile devices is still growing: More and more potential customers will use their tablets and phones to search the Web. Mobile SEO and paid search ads should be a key part of your search engine marketing strategy.

Spamming mobile devices will ruin your good name: If a company offers to text your ad to thousands of people, run away fast. Aside from being illegal, it will only hurt your brand.

GPS-based marketing can give brick-and-mortar businesses an edge: The adage still holds true: “location, location, location.” Mobile marketing enables you to target nearby consumers with customized coupons and discounts through Google Ads and iPhone apps.

Seeing a coupon for the local ice cream shop on my phone as I’m walking around town could easily make me stop in for a treat.

Location-based marketing can give your business a boost by increasing foot traffic and conversion.

Mobile payment is gaining ground: Starbucks has been leading the way allowing customers to pay with their phones. As a case study, Starbucks is showing that mobile payments are a great way to interact with customers, reduce payment barriers and increase brand loyalty.

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