Mastering Mobile Marketing
Mastering Mobile Marketing
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Mastering Mobile Marketing
Master Mobile Marketing
Mobile sites truly optimized for search engines appear
when customers browse for the product on the mobile Web;
It might be tempting to scoff at mobile
marketing and to view it as yet another
that can be redeemed only in the store. Businesses may
trend – much like the latest fashion
even use QR codes so that customers can scan in-store,
statements that incorporate neon
they sometimes even display exclusive mobile promotions
get product info, compare prices, read customer reviews or
colors and leopard prints. But for
view videos of the product in action.
the first time in 2013, “time spent
on non-voice mobile activities
Retail stores, for instance, live in an age of showrooming.
will surpass time spent online on
Potential customers visit their stores and examine products
desktop and laptop computers,”
but browse for product reviews and deals on their mobile
according to eMarketer.
devices at the same time. It’s a live second screen experience.
Mobile marketing is here to stay. Cus-
Google, in its “Mobile In-Store Research” report, says that
tomers are using mobile and demanding it
84 percent of smartphone owners use their phones to help
through their behaviors. Businesses are responding with
them shop while in the store. Some of those customers turn
mobile websites, promotions and apps. But are they getting
into paying ones, but a number of them complete their pur-
chase either at a different store or online.
Since the dawn of the iPhone, Android and the iPad, mobile
A number of research findings, including
usage has been on the rise. comScore reports in “Mobile Fu-
ones from Google, Gartner and Pew
ture in Focus” that smartphones have surpassed 125 million
Internet, suggest that consumers who
U.S. consumers, and 50 million people now own tablets.
browse on smartphones while in
The research agency calls the statistic a “brave new digital
the store purchase more. comScore
world” that presents a “new paradigm in digital media frag-
adds that 46 percent of shoppers are
mentation in which consumers are always connected.”
less likely to comparison shop when
using a mobile app.
“Always connected” means more and more people using
mobile devices for things as simple as checking work email
The growth in mobile usage extends
or as complex as purchasing a new refrigerator and arrang-
beyond consumers’ personal lives, too.
ing pickup at the local Best Buy.
Christina Carstensen of the IAB Mobile Center
of Excellence remarks, “Users have migrated from the es-
Businesses are experiencing increased mobile usage at
tablished separation of work and play toward an ‘always on’
work and in their storefronts. Some have responded by
mentality reflected in the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) to
making mobile usage part of the culture. For example, many
work trend. Today, the lines between private lives and work
businesses are upgrading their meeting rooms so that
lives are being erased with 41 percent of smartphone users
employees can connect personal devices and share content
and 37 percent of tablet users saying that they use privately
with other people’s devices or on wall mounted screens.
purchased smartphones and tablets as business devices.”
Businesses with storefronts are making it easier than ever to
Employees might review work email on their personal
browse their products while on mobile devices, and creat-
smartphones while at lunch or at home, but only respond
ing seamless mobile and in-store experiences. Those find-
to the simpler emails, leaving more complicated ones for
ing success often do so through mobile apps and websites
when they will be back at their work laptops or desktops.
that feature reward programs, reviews and/or an ability to
They may access vendor sites on a mobile phone while in
pay and even arrange and confirm deliveries via mobile.
meetings to provide information on the fly.
1 Read more at http://www.emarketer.com/Article/US-Time-Spent-on-Mobile-Overtake-Desktop/1010095#5WypOuAEBoObREMC.99
Mastering Mobile Marketing
Do It or Lose It
Because mobile usage is a leviathan taking
over Web browsing, businesses have
a choice to make. They can choose
to heed their customers’ changing
behavior patterns or ignore the
elephant in the room. But businesses
that don’t embrace mobile will join
the relics of an era that belongs to the
desktop and Yellow Pages.
SuperMonitoring says that 57 percent of
mobile users “won’t recommend a business
with a poorly designed mobile site.” When businesses
notice an increase in mobile visits and the corresponding
increase in their bounce rate (how quickly someone leaves
a website), they need to take necessary steps to evolve their
Web presence with mobile-friendly websites featuring
responsive design, adaptive design or mobile-only design.
Responsive design perhaps is the best-known term due to
its prominence in both Web design and email marketing
circles. When incorporated into a website or newsletter,
responsive design, according to Ryan Boudreaux’s Tech
Republic definition, adapts “its layout to viewing device,
user agent and environment. The distilled definition of
a responsive Web design is that it will fluidly change and
respond to fit any screen or device size.”
A number of Web design firms and email marketing companies, among them StudioPress and iContact, offer responsive templates to their customers. In addition, many email
marketing and other marketing automation solutions, like
Vocus, allow businesses to create responsive landing pages.
For marketers today, this is an important consideration.
If the site doesn’t load quickly or show a relevant medium-friendly message – i.e. a landing page – customers will
leave, and the business’s mobile marketing efforts will be
By using a responsive mobile landing page, businesses
ensure that their messages will display properly on any and
all devices, and increase their chances for conversion.
Responsive design isn’t perfect: Fluidity requires a large
amount of code. It also means that all of a website’s assets
have to be downloaded before content will appear on a
mobile device. Both factors can result in slower load times
and a sometimes less than optimal viewing experience. Of
course, everything comes at a price, and a good responsive
design doesn’t come cheap. It can be as much as two and
half times more expensive than traditional interactive design.
Adaptive designs typically load faster than responsive
designs because of a streamlined approach. They first
detect the device, and then show only content that fit within the screen or device size so that the best version of a site
is delivered to the desktop, tablet or smartphone.
Adaptive designs use a “a predetermined set of screen and
device sizes” and complement those sizes with three layers of code: a content layer, the HTML, and a client-side
seem like a lot of code, it often is less code than responsive
designs. Adaptive design can also be expensive to create as
you should make sure you work with a good UI/UX (user
Mobile-only design is not the same as mobile application design. Mobile-only means website
designs that are distinctly different from
their desktop counterparts. Mobile-only
designs can be easier to build than responsive or adaptive designs. They offer
more flexibility when it comes to tailoring the user experience, but they are their
own sites and require additional maintenance and attention.
Marketers that choose mobile-only design are
committing to create content for and maintain two websites for one brand. Businesses have to decide where to
send traffic, which can be problematic when planning
either social updates or working on search engine optimization (SEO) and marketing (SEM). Currently, Google doesn’t
recognize the mobile site as part of the main URL; in fact,
from a reporting perspective, it views it as a competitor.
Promoting on Mobile
Mobile promotions, like mobile website design, include
huge opportunities. One is advertising within mobile
Mastering Mobile Marketing
networks. It sounds easy enough, but it’s just as challenging,
double-stuffed French toast at 7 p.m. The restaurants would
if not more so, than desktop PPC (pay-per-click) ads.
rely on “dayparting” – scheduling ads for peak hours so that
ads only appeared during targeted times.
Matt Sanchez, the founder and CEO of Say Media, says,
“There just isn’t enough room […] We can’t get enough ads
Similarly, a business promoting a specific product wouldn’t
on the page, or they are often so small that they don’t per-
serve an ad all day if inventory were too low to meet
form, or the reader zooms in on the content and adjusts the
demand or if the product were only available at select stores.
window so that the ads never show up […] All that matters is
The business might promote the “hot” product during spe-
what is on screen at any given moment.”
cific times and at strategic locations.
Mobile advertising isn’t as easily wrangled as desktop
Retail TouchPoints suggests, “Digital promotional offers
advertising. It is constantly evolving and requires unique
can deliver more timely and up-to-the-minute content […]
and intelligent mobile content. Business Insider states,
Because of the real-time nature of digital media messaging,
“The mobile ad ecosystem is not as strictly delineated as the
it also can be tied directly to a retailer’s inventory levels. And
desktop ecosystem. In mobile advertising, the rules of the
digital media technologies can target consumers by time
road change with different combinations of device, wire-
and location, better engaging shoppers and personalizing
less operator and operating system.” Complicating matters,
the in-store experience.”
there are no standardized protocols, making it difficult to
target, deliver and measure ads across platforms.
Relevance is the primary factor when it comes to
mobile marketing. The point of mobile ads is not to create
Mobile advertising relies on three factors:
an opportunistic Oreo moment, but to engage strategically,
increase sales, and create satisfied, loyal customers longterm. Since mobile promotions work on an opt-in basis –
they’re only found on the devices carried in people’s pockets or bags and can only be seen when accessing a mobile
network, site or app – relevance has to be preeminent. Con-
text isn’t an easy element to implement, but it may become
easier as mobile technology gets smarter.
Geofencing creates virtual boundaries for a real-world
In New York City, a newly opened restaurant wouldn’t
serve ads to the entire city, but would instead use a digital
“fence” so that its ads only appeared when people entered
within a certain radius of the restaurant’s physical location.
Those ads would only appear if people opted in to receiving
promotions from either the restaurant itself or apps like
Yelp, Foursquare or Gravy.
Timing is everything. IHOP may serve breakfast all
day long, but not every restaurant does. Restaurants without
a 24/7 breakfast menu wouldn’t show an ad for their breakfast special at two o’clock in the afternoon. It’s not only a bad
investment, but it also creates problems when customers
enter the restaurant asking about the blueberry pancakes or
Businesses also can implement text message or SMS campaigns. Just because customers may not have
the time to fill out a form doesn’t mean they
aren’t interested in receiving information from your brand. By offering SMS
with proper opt-in, businesses lower
the barrier to sharing information.
They also gain the capability to send
not only a series of text messages that
move customers toward completing
their profiles, but also messages about
upcoming events or specials. A number
of companies, such as Tatango and Punchkick Interactive, offer SMS marketing.
Text messages are like email marketing; however, text
messages offer opportunities for sharing time or geolocation-sensitive information that email marketing some-
Mastering Mobile Marketing
times cannot. SinglePoint’s study, “Conversational Adver-
Domino’s Pizza, Dunkin’ Donuts, Starbucks, Chipotle and
tising,” finds that about 90 percent of all text messages are
7-Eleven’s sales numbers validate applications as a sales
read within three minutes of arriving on a mobile phone.
channel. The companies are just a few big brands that have
Text messages also are much more likely to be viewed than
created compelling apps and are reporting increased repeat
emails. Frost & Sullivan’s study cites SMS open rates in
mobile and in-store visits and sales.
excess of 97 percent, while email open rates fall somewhere
between 22 and 33 percent.
SMS marketing isn’t solely for businesses with time-sensi-
Landing Pages, Email and Experiences –
tive offerings. Businesses like Sony and Nintendo can take
advantage of text messages, too. Customers who go home
with a new PlayStation or Xbox may sign up for text alerts
only landing pages. Matthew Kelleher
about new games or system updates. As the customers fill
out their profiles, text messages become more personal-
“[There’s] ‘not much point in opti-
ized, so they receive a notification and link for the latest
mizing email if you don’t have a
“Call of Duty” game but not the “My Little Pony” one. SMS
mobile site, as the journey will
isn’t limited to B2C companies – all types of businesses
end in disappointment for the
are taking advantage of SMS, most notably staffing agen-
customer or prospect, earning
cies, real estate agents and institutions such as universities
you negative brand perception
marks.’ Only 3.3 percent of sub-
scribers will view a single email
in more than one environment
and 61 percent of users are unlikely
to return to a mobile site that they had
Another option for mobile promotions are applications. For
trouble accessing from their phone. In other
these, customer behavior is again dictating the creation of
words, you only get one shot to get it right.”
the apps. Accenture reports that 43 percent of consumers desire experiences tailored to their
It isn’t just the customer experience that is at stake. ion
needs and preferences through every
interactive notes that mobile-only landing pages impact
conversion rates. If the pages confuse and frustrate, load
in-store, online and on mobile de-
too slowly, or are in any other way a negative experience,
vices. comScore shares a similar
consumers bounce, and conversion rates drop.
Mobile-only landing pages have to be simple and easy to
retailers on their mobile devices – 47
use. They cannot be the same as their desktop counterparts;
percent want a coupon/promotion
transferring a desktop landing page to a mobile-friendly for-
sent to them because a retailer knows
mat does not a mobile-only landing page make. Transferring
they are in-store or nearby.”
content without optimizing it for mobile devices or thinking
about the customer’s experience only results in a cluttered
Deloitte adds, “According to our study, the conversion rate
screen and uncertainty or even inability to take action.
in the store for shoppers who use a retailer’s dedicated app is
21 percent higher than those who don’t – most likely because
The importance of and concerns about mobile-only land-
such apps can provide a more relevant and tailored shopping
ing pages point to a larger issue when it comes to mobile
experience that helps people make an immediate buying
marketing: some content works well and some just doesn’t.
decision […] A more relevant and tailored in-store shopping
Content that does work well is short and to the point. It is
experience using a retailer’s dedicated app/site can result in
not a lengthy article or a complex form. It is content built for
smartphone shoppers that are more loyal and valuable.”
mobile and stripped to its most essential form.
Mastering Mobile Marketing
Rich media works well in general, but video works the best.
required medium. It requires new designs, promotions and
According to the IAB Center of Mobile Excellence, “90 per-
cent of all tablet users said they watch video content on
their device (up from 66 percent in 2012) while 67 percent
To be successful, businesses have to understand their cus-
indicated that they watch videos on their small-screen
tomers much more deeply than they may have had to in
the past. They also have to recognize that their customers are “on,” anytime and anywhere. If businesses wish to
Mobile users don’t only watch full-length YouTube
attract new customers and keep current ones, they will have
videos. Extremely short videos of Vine and Instagram
to start residing where their customers are, and their cus-
length created by friends or brands like Ben and Jerry’s are
tomers are living in the land of mobile.
just as intriguing.
Chris Mahaffy of Gloto remarks, “GM, Doritos, Lowes, Marc
Jacobs and many other major brands are regular Vine
users […] Instagram’s addition of video to their apps will
allow brands to focus on improving visibility by expanding
their visual content from static photos into engaging videos
intended for multi-social network consumption.”
The final three words of Mahaffy’s point are crucial. Any
content designed for mobile devices has to have the ability to be shared and to be shared easily. Mobile, after all, is
social; almost two-thirds of social activity currently occurs
on tablets and smartphones.
Many videos, for example, have embedded social links so
that viewers can share content to networks like Facebook,
Twitter and Pinterest. Other businesses opt to integrate
either embedded or pop-up social calls to action with their
videos. Still others post their videos to Facebook, Instagram
and other social networks to generate “buzz” or to garner
Mobile is Here to Stay
Consumers and businesses alike have
spoken. Mobile marketing is here to
stay. There are definitely some challenges ahead, but most marketing
methods present challenges.
Mobile marketing is a hyper-localized, time-sensitive and relevance-
Marketing can be hard. To help you succeed and generate
more revenue, Vocus offers an integrated suite of the most
powerful tools you need.
We help you attract and engage prospects on social media,
search engines and in the news. We get your message in
front of the right prospects at the right time with tools, customized landing pages and targeted emails.
Our suite includes a social CRM to manage the activity
of your prospects and customers, as well as integrated
analytics to discover what drives likes, shares, opens, clickthroughs and conversions.
With our marketing consulting and services team ready to
help, Vocus delivers marketing success.
Find out more at www.vocus.com.
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