More than half of consumers now rely on mobile devices to stay connected to friends, work, email, social media and the Internet, for an average of three hours a day. By contrast, fewer than half of consumers still rely on their desktop computers to perform the same functions, according to data reported by media expert Mary Meeker and Smart Insights.
Not surprisingly, Smart Insights also reports that marketers invested nearly $30 billion into mobile marketing during 2015.
Though small businesses should leverage mobile as part of their marketing campaigns, they can maximize their investment by taking a moment to understand the unique demands that success in the channel requires.
Here are three typical mobile marketing mistakes -- and how to avoid them:
1. Limiting the tactics a mobile marketing campaign includes.
Mobile marketing may seem limited to short message service (SMS)/text messages, or display advertising within a mobile app -- but the tactics a mobile marketing campaign can and should include are far more robust. In fact, data reported by Eleventy Group reveals that 75 percent of Gmail’s 900 million users check their messages on a mobile device; 25 percent of mobile app use is dedicated to social media (particularly Facebook). The data also indicates that 70 percent of consumers prefer to receive mobile marketing messages via email, compared to less than 2 percent who say they want to receive text or SMS marketing messages.
Choose a variety of mobile media mediums and tactics to engage mobile users in a “surround sound” approach. Focus on building mobile lists before deploying mobile campaigns (which may use mobile ad networks) buying email lists and printing mediums to support your campaigns.
For example, retail brand The North Face expanded the reach of its mobile marketing campaign with printed media. Posters and signs directed prospects to elect to receive mobile marketing messages to get special offers when they were near one of the brand’s retail locations in the future -- using mobile’s geolocation capability. Replicate the same kind of promotion for your local customers, to develop your mobile user list, and drive traffic and sales when they’re in close proximity to your store.
2. Not making the transition between channels seamless.
Whether your end goal is to increase engagement with your social media page, drive traffic to your website, or convert prospects into paying e-commerce customers, the mobile user’s experience must be seamless and aligned throughout.
Customers who receive an email message that they check on their mobile device should be taken to an appropriate m-commerce platform that makes it easy for them to browse and pay -- all from their mobile device.
To accomplish such usability, you may need to:
- Adjust mobile site layout, text, images and user flow accordingly.
- Incorporate mobile-specific site features like the ability to log in to an existing account using social media credentials, to contact your business directly, apply a promotion code with the touch of a button, and pay using drop down features that are conducive on a mobile device.
3. Not using creative tactics that attract a mobile audience.
Mobile device screens are small, and mobile users are often distracted and impatient when using them. Though don’t mistake those challenges to mean you should limit creativity of your mobile marketing campaign.
Video, for example, now accounts for more than 55 percent of user engagement on mobile devices, according to technology company Cisco. Mobile marketers can use the medium to deliver succinct but memorable messages that mobile users can see, hear and engage with -- just as they do with non-promotional videos.
You can also take a creative cue from larger advertisers’ successful campaigns. The Brooklyn Nets basketball team executed a successful mobile marketing campaign with a scavenger hunt for free tickets. Using mobile messages and social media, it kept users engaged by consistently releasing clues about where tickets where hidden. Small-business marketers can create the same kind of enthusiasm by giving mobile users similar opportunities to win free services or products.
Mobile marketing is a newer tactic to businesses of all sizes, and it may take some trial and error to master. Keep these common mistakes in mind when developing your mobile marketing program to develop a deeper understanding of the mobile tactics that resonate with your audience.
Written by Kristen Gramigna, BluePay