Mobile marketing is set to be the biggest part of digital marketing.
Simply because mobile devices have overtaken desktop in internet usage.
India alone has over 500 million mobile internet users. It’s the fastest growing market for mobile commerce.
It would be foolish not to tap this market.
How do you do that?
Using mobile marketing, of course!
The mobile marketing revolution began with SMS advertisements nearly two decades ago. Today, the mobile-first approach has gained more importance.
As defined by Techopedia, “mobile marketing is the interactive multichannel promotion of products or services for mobile phones and devices, smartphones and networks”.
Big words? Yes, we know.
It’s just fancy talk for ‘using different channels to promote your products and services over mobile devices with interactive content’.
Mobile marketing is more than just creating a responsive website. It includes QR codes, text messages, app-based marketing approaches such as push notifications, and more.
But that comes later.
First, you might be wondering…
Why You Need Mobile Marketing?
Mobile marketing helps you reach a newer and broader audience. It allows you to be more directly connected with your consumers.
Here are 12 more reasons why you need to use mobile marketing!
Let’s face it:
Marketing budgets are always a constraint.
The good news is:
Some aspects of mobile marketing are more cost-effective than other marketing and advertising methods.
Sending text messages is not only cheap but also effective. Most users read every SMS they receive. That’s more than what you can say for emails.
2. Instant and Effective:
Mobile marketing is… well… mobile.
Smartphone users always have their phones with them. They will receive and view your message anytime and anywhere.
Instant connection with your audiences anywhere in the world!
3. Easy to Track Results:
Your mobile marketing campaign’s impact can be measured instantly with click-through rates, page visits, customer opt-ins, etc.
This, in turn, allows you to adapt quickly to the changing wants and desires of consumers. This significant data shows you your return on investment.
4. Improve Google Ranking:
Search engine algorithms are giving higher preference to mobile-friendly sites.
Because user experience is very important!
Enough for Google to start penalising websites that aren’t mobile-friendly.
You need a responsive web design or Google will lower your rank in search engine pages.
5. Mobile Search Intent:
The information users seek on mobile devices is different from a desktop or static device.
Let me explain:
When you search on a computer, you are probably seeking some information.
“Best pasta in town”
“Best smartphone of [year]”
On the other hand:
When you search on your mobile, you are more likely to be out on the road and ready to buy.
“Restaurants near me”
“Find electronic stores”
… and so on.
See the difference?
Why would you not optimise to cash in on the more urgent need?
6. Hyperlocal Marketing:
Let’s elaborate on the previous point. Mobile users are looking for local options.
Their mobiles are monitoring their location.
How can you use that?
You could send location-specific messages to users!
The TripAdvisor app recommends restaurants and monuments near you. Since you’re already there, you’re more likely to visit them.
7. The Viral Potential:
Mobile marketing messages are (and need to be!) easily shareable.
Being the first to know about sales, special deals, and new products makes your customers feel appreciated.
They then forward this information to friends. That’s amplified exposure without any extra cost for you!
8. A Two-way Communication:
Mobile marketing can help start a two-way communication.
Vodafone always asks for feedback via SMS questions after you contact their customer service. Customers reply with feedback, and problems are resolved quickly.
This helps build a long-term relationship.
9. Higher Conversion Rates:
Mobile commerce now makes up 34% of all e-commerce transactions around the world.
It’s predicted to grow by 31% by the end of 2017!
Large companies are cashing in on this trend.
Instagram now includes ads with Shop Now buttons in their feed.
Pinterest now has Buyable Pins.
10. More Emails are Opened on Mobile:
Here are some stats from Email Monday:
Desktop email opens – 16%
Mobile email opens – 54%
People check emails on their phones more than on their desktops.
What does that mean?
You need to optimise your emails for mobile viewing!
11. Increased Intimacy:
Mobiles are the most personal screens.
Users take them everywhere with them… including to bed.
Contextualise and understand what users are experiencing when they interact with your content.
Using emotional triggers, find ways to stimulate their senses and create a positive emotional experience.
Build trust. Build intimacy. Build brand recall. Build conversion.
Here’s the thing:
Customers need to view your ad a few times to become familiar with your brand. This increases the possibility of conversions.
Put your name where they are likely to see it over and over again over the course of the day.
Be there in their SMS inboxes. Greet them on social media. Engage them with emails.
The easiest way to do it is through mobile marketing.
Responsive Web Design
Websites that are poorly optimised for mobile immediately lose their visitors.
There are four major desktop web browsers, three major smartphone platforms, and screen-sizes ranging from 3″ to 30″.
How many different websites do you need to build to accommodate all these different configurations?
To individually optimise is time-consuming and expensive.
Responsive web design.
A responsive website changes according to the user’s behaviour and environment. It does this based on screen size, platform and device orientation.
It eliminates the need for a different design and development phase for each new gadget on the market.
Responsive web design is not only about adjustable screen resolutions and automatically re-sizeable images. Rather, it’s about a whole new approach to design.
The web developer creates multiple style sheets with basic layout changes. These are defined to fit ranges of widths including landscape orientations. Everything is fluid, including images and layouts. You build one site, but ensure that it can readily adapt to any device.
How do you create it?
Making a responsive web design consists of a mix of flexible grids and layouts, images and an intelligent use of CSS media queries.
The website automatically switches to accommodate for resolution, image size and scripting abilities.
In CSS3, the Flexbox layout model is often the go-to solution. It enables you to easily reorder elements on the screen, independent of the HTML.
With responsive design, your padding, margin and border values will always be honoured; the browser will simply change the width of the elements until they fit the parent.
The website is displayed as a single column design on mobile screens. As the screen size gets bigger, the navigation expands. The website becomes a two- and later three-column design.
The single-column on a small screen means you need to prioritise your content.
You will need to decide the content’s hierarchy.
You also need to incorporate testing on multiple devices every step of the way.
Plan for content in all contexts. According to Karen McGrane, you need to plan for what’s available and also for what might be available in the future!
Types of Mobile Marketing Strategies
Mobile technology is all about customised personalisation. So is mobile marketing.
Use one or a mix of any of the following mobile marketing strategies in your marketing plan to get a piece of the mobile revenue pie!
1. Mobile Advertising:
79% of people purchase things through their mobile!
Digest that for a minute.
The fact is:
When mobile users search for a business, they have a high intent of visiting or purchasing something from them.
Google knows this.
It introduced Enhanced Campaigns for all AdWords users to make mobile advertising easier.
This integrates mobile advertising options with classic online AdWords advertising. That, in turn, allows you to manage your AdWords bids across various devices in a single campaign.
That’s great for you!
You can make the best of this feature by choosing to bid higher for users on mobile devices. You can select ones who are within a certain range of your store. You can even bid only during the store’s open hours.
Creating mobile search ads with Google lets you take advantage of Google’s mobile ad extensions. This includes extensions such as mobile site links, click to call, special offers for mobile users, local ad, and click to download.
You could even use in-game mobile marketing. This includes using mobile ads to appear within mobile games. They could be banner pop-ups, full-page image ads or even video ads that appear on loading screens.
2. Mobile Advertising Using Social Media
Social media is a great place for businesses to advertise on when targeting mobile devices.
Facebook and other such social networks have evolved their ad platforms to allow you to easily target mobile consumers.
On Facebook and Instagram, native ads can look as much a part of the feed as your sister’s food flat lay.
Snapchat currently has 166 million daily active users. The number is expected to go up to 15% by the end of 2017.
Want to know something crazy?
Currently, only 5% of marketers are taking advantage of advertising on this app!
With ads and ‘shoppable’(Instagram term, not ours) tools, Instagram is becoming a crucial element of any e-commerce growth strategy.
Their engagement is off the charts!
Their research shows that ad-recall from Instagram sponsored ads is 2.8 times higher on average than ad-recall from other social networks.
30% of Instagram users say they’ve purchased a product they discovered on Instagram.
A more recent Forrester independent research found that consumers are 58 times more likely to engage with branded content on Instagram compared to Facebook!
Isn’t that useful to know?
Know where your customers go on mobile and you’ll know where you should advertise.
3. Optimising for Hyperlocal Micro-moments
We discussed part of this earlier. Remember hyperlocal marketing and mobile search intent?
1 in 3 mobile searches have local intent! If they’re searching for a business, they have a high intent of visiting or purchasing.
Users frequently use smartphones for quick, in-the-moment advice, help or information. These are known as micro-moments.
Hyper-local optimisation depends on these micro-moments.
Local mobile marketing should be a key aspect of your mobile strategy. If you don’t invest in converting mobile leads you could be missing out on valuable business opportunities.
To optimise locally, use keywords that inspire people to purchase or visit your business straight away. Such as ‘buy now’.
Also include your location and store timings for customers searching for options nearby.
Use Google’s local mobile marketing extension. It makes contacting you easy for users, with click to call or a location pin using Google Maps.
4. App-Based Marketing
“To app or not to app? That is the question”.
It depends on your business.
Determine if your business needs an app. Consider factors such as target audience, available budget, intended purpose, and required features. See if an app creates a better user experience for your customers.
Apps aren’t necessary. In fact, mobile websites can mimic the appearance of an app quite easily.
They can play an important role in your mobile marketing strategy…
Their relevance comes after a mobile-friendly website. Without the latter, doing the former would be pointless and counterproductive.
Still, there are certain features that only an app can give you.
Push notifications, offline access, notifications to encourage users towards specific content, and targeted calls-to-action.
Apps also provide valuable insights into customer behaviour.
5. Mobile Optimised Emails
At this point, you might think emails are outdated.
That’s not true at all.
Email marketing is still relevant. It’s important to mobile marketing too.
An increasing number of people use mobile devices to open emails. A responsive design, a clearly visible call to action, and specialised landing pages can help your emails stand out.
6. SMS Marketing
Planned your email marketing?
A great way to communicate with your customers is through text messages.
They have an open rate of 98%. That’s a lot more than email marketing!
How do you use text messages for mobile marketing?
Embed a link in the text that takes your customers straight to your website or specialised landing page.
Customise your texts to your consumer persona for best results. Make it shareable!
7. QR codes
QR codes bridge the gap between mobile marketing and traditional marketing!
These are symbols that can be scanned by mobile devices to take the users to a specific website or content. Scanning these QR codes off a poster or printed advertisement could direct the users to mobile landing pages.
Think about it for a moment.
One quick scan and your viewer is taken straight to the page you want them on!
That’s powerful. That’s trackable!
Can you imagine the possibilities? You can easily combine your offline and online marketing in one single swoop!
8. Mobile Payments
Mobile marketing means planning every stage of the buying cycle, including payment.
To make payment simpler, consider mobile payments.
The Starbucks app is an excellent example of this. They use Near Field Communication (NFC) to wonderful effect.
It’s a convenient form of transaction, reducing the need for a wallet. Incorporating it in your mobile marketing strategy will give you an edge over the competition!
Best Practices for Mobile Marketing
Use these dependable best practices to capitalise on mobile marketing!
1. Mobile-First Local Marketing:
Are you just starting to incorporate mobile marketing into your overall marketing efforts?
It’s best to create for mobile and then scale up – apply a mobile-first approach. Don’t forget to optimise for local mobile marketing. Align your content with users’ queries.
2. No Clutter:
Mobile users have a small screen and limited viewing space. Don’t clutter it unnecessarily.
It’s best to keep the design and content simple.
3. Visual over Textual:
It’s a basic fact of life.
People prefer visuals over text.
This is especially true for mobile users.
I mean, have you tried reading on your phone screen?
Short videos and bright images are good for your mobile marketing content.
Facebook displays twice as many videos in your feed on a mobile device compared to the desktop version.
Be like Facebook.
4. Be Social:
Mobile marketing and social media engagement go hand-in-hand… for obvious reasons.
What does that mean?
Mobile content needs to have stronger social media integration!
Allow content to be directly shared through social media apps. Buzzfeed does this particularly well.
Engage with clients on social media.
Quick replies are looked upon favourably. You could use bots on Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp for quicker replies to customers. These can be followed up with check-ins by live staff.
Shorter reaction time leads to happy customers. Happy customers are good for business!
5. Exclusive and Customised Content:
I know it’s easier to make content to use everywhere indiscriminately.
Here’s some advice.
If you absolutely have to, go mobile-first.
Don’t make the mistake of creating content for desktop and reusing it on mobile. Instead, create specialised content. Exclusive or modified content by various brands for Snapchat and Instagram stories is a relevant example of this.
6. Define Mobile Buyer Persona:
Users change behaviour according to the device they are browsing on.
So why would you use the same tactics and content for web and mobile users?
When and how users view your content on mobile should shape your marketing efforts. Create a different mobile buyer persona than the web buyer persona.
7. Constantly Keep Measuring Results:
Experimenting is great.
We love experimenting.
There’s no point in trying new techniques if you’re not tracking your results to see what works and what doesn’t.
Try the AdWords Grader to see how your mobile pay per click ad campaigns are performing.
Measure the success of your social media campaigns.
Analyse what works and what doesn’t.
Keep measuring and adapting.
8. Don’t Cross the Line:
We mentioned earlier that mobile marketing can be very intimate.
The user is essentially allowing you into their personal space.
Don’t misuse that trust.
It’s important to remember that users really care about their privacy. Unsolicited promotional activity is not appreciated.
Don’t make them regret trusting you.
Go Ahead and Implement Mobile Marketing!
Mobile marketing is here to stay. It will only get bigger as more and more people start to use mobiles. Mobile viewing time is already higher than time spent on a desktop.
With sky-high open and click-through rates, your marketing efforts are maximised when using mobile marketing.
Target your audience, adopt a mobile responsive design, and create content specifically for mobile users to ensure the success of your business. Do it right, and watch it pay off!