[On your mark!] A potential customer reaches for their smartphone and searches for a business like yours.
[Get set!] They find a website, perfectly optimized for the mobile user. It’s easy to use and within seconds, they find what they’re looking for. And a great offer is waiting for them too. They can’t resist.
[Go!] And they’re off… racing toward that business’ physical address or ordering the product online. The prospect was engaged by the business’ online mobile presence and they’re just a few, short steps away from becoming a happy customer.
The question is - who just made that easy sale … you or your competition? The race for mobile sales has already started. Are you running alongside your customers… or are you still at the gate, wondering where the sound of the start gun came from?
Several months ago, we talked about implementing mobile tags into your marketing campaign and stressed that its future looked promising. Today we’ll talk about other mobile marketing strategies and why you can’t afford to ignore mobile any longer.
It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that mobile computing is exploding right before our eyes. Just take a look around. The person on your right might be comparing prices for new flat screen TVs. The person on your left could be searching for an Italian restaurant. The person in front of you is checking their Twitter messages –and the sound you hear in back of you is a teenager playing Angry Birds - and everyone’s doing these things from their smartphone. Smartphones gives us the freedom of a powerful, always connected computer wherever we go.
By 2013, it’s estimated there will be more than 1 billion smartphones in the marketplace. By the end of this year (2011), look for half of us in the U.S to own one. And the number of people who will access the internet only through mobile devices will skyrocket from 14 million last year to nearly 800 million by 2015. We are in love with our mobile devices. And it’s not just Americans. There are nearly five billion cell phone subscriptions world-wide. And the number is growing.
If you’re still not convinced that mobile is the way of the future, here’s one final sobering fact: There are more mobile phones in the world today than televisions and computers (desktops & laptops) combined.
The reasons for the rapid growth are obvious. Your smartphone is your constant companion and probably more useful than anything else you own in regards to the variety of things it can do for you. Smartphones are becoming more affordable and data plans are getting less expensive. They’re also getting more powerful while the computing speed of these devices is becoming faster. Smartphones are fun to use and can access just about anything you can imagine.
It is for these reasons and more that your business needs to devote time and resources to mobile marketing now. With roughly 15% or more of searches coming from mobile devices already, (and that number will keep rising) it is easy to see why creating a mobile interface for your company’s website, specifically optimized for the mobile user, is a high priority. This doesn’t mean just a carbon copy of your website. First you must identify what elements in your business are attractive to the mobile user and include these items to make the overall experience fast, easy and efficient.
For example, let’s say your business is a local restaurant. If a mobile user accesses your website, the mobile interface appears. Instead of having to surf through all your pages of the website, the user immediately sees a coupon they can redeem now. Or maybe it’s the ‘today’s specials’ from your menu. Chances are this potential customer is close by, hungry and looking for a place to eat. They look at your specials or see your coupon and then click on ‘Get Directions Now’. Make it simple and easy for your prospect, and you’ll probably get a customer. Make it difficult or confusing, and that prospect will quickly find another place to eat. Almost 30% of restaurant inquiries already originate from mobile phones – so if you run a restaurant you should definitely have a mobile strategy in place. If not… you’re leaving money on your competitor’s table.
What if you’re a trade school or college? You probably already have a website with lots of pages full of wonderful information. But accessing that site on a mobile device is going to be unwieldy and inconvenient. Think about your mobile user’s experience and how to engage them immediately. What are they looking for? How fast can they get it? How do you want your viewer to respond? It may be a sales video showing the variety of courses and the freedom of online classes. Or it could be a series of videos that discuss schedules, student orientation, enrollment instructions and adjusting to campus life.
Whatever your business is, creating a mobile specific site is vital to beginning a mobile marketing plan. Nearly 80% of businesses are not ready to engage their mobile customers yet. This is an excellent opportunity to get a jump start on your competition.
Don’t get overly complicated or bite off more than you can chew. The most successful mobile marketing campaigns are simple in nature. Your mobile plan should be an extension of your brand’s existing strategy – not the other way around. Forcing a mobile tactic upon your brand, without it being well planned, will result in wasted time and money.
A digital media agency can help you set up an effective mobile strategy, including setting up a mobile website interface and identifying the right type of content to include in your mobile campaign. This can save you lots of time, money and the frustration of trial and error… because businesses like yours may be reading this blog too. And if you don’t keep up with your competition in the mobile marketing race, you just might lose sight of the finish line.
Captivation Agency understands there is a lot of competition for your business. We take pride in our work and strive to maintain the highest levels of customer satisfaction, especially when it comes to implementing a mobile marketing campaign. Please contact us today to talk to a friendly Captivation representative and see how we can reduce your operating expenses, increase your productivity and make your company more competitive.