Unveiling the Possibilities of Mobile Marketing

We’ve become a mobile society, worldwide. People around the world are on the go, and nearly everyone has a mobile phone or a mobile device of some kind to help them connect with people, information, and businesses
from anywhere.
 
Sure, people are still making and receiving phone
calls with their mobile phones, but increasingly, they’re also texting, searching
the Web, downloading applications, consuming content, responding to
ads, spending money, and generating value for themselves and marketers,
not just with phones but a wide range of devices as explained below.
 
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The mobile device is increasingly becoming a cornerstone of our mobilized
society. In fact, for many people around the globe, a mobile device has
become their primary communication and commerce tool. Whenever our
world changes, so must the practice of marketing. This book is all about
showing you how to embrace this change. We show you how to embrace the
emerging practice of mobile marketing and engage your customers through
and with the mobile devices they use.
 
In this chapter, we get you started. We provide you with a detailed definition
of mobile marketing and review its key elements. And because the mobile
device is the cornerstone of any mobile marketing practice, we review in
detail the three categories of mobile devices, the networks that enable them,
and the eight mobile media paths that are the backbone of mobile marketing.
When you’re done reading this chapter, you’ll have the foundation you need
to understand everything else you find in this book.
 

Marketers are gravitating to mobile

In June 2010, the Mobile Marketing Association
(www.mmaglobal.com), along with Chief
Marketer, Advertising Database Express, and
Kinesis Survey Technologies released a study
titled, “Second Annual View from Madison
Avenue.” According to this study, total U.S.
media in 2010 expenditures (the money that
marketers allocate to engage their customers
through media channels like television, radio,
newspapers, outdoor signage and other media
channels including mobile) will total about $128
billion. The MMA report estimates that mobile
media will account for 1.8%, or $2.3 billion, of
this total spending. By 2011, the MMA report
estimates that total mobile media spending in
the U.S. will grow to $5.5 billion, or 4.0% of the
$135 billion that will be spent on media in the
U.S. This is a 124% increase! Remember, these
are just the U.S. media numbers. Mobile marketing
is growing all over the world in every
market sector. Moreover, as you find through
the rest of this book, mobile marketing is not just
about media spending but also about engaging
your audience in all sorts of ways to deliver
value. The impact of mobile marketing is simply
staggering.

Defining Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing, according to the Mobile Marketing Association (www.
mmaglobal.com), is “a set of practices that enable organizations to communicate
and engage with their audience in an interactive and relevant manner
through any mobile device or network.” That definition contains just 26
words, but it packs in a lot of meaningful terminology.
 
In the following sections, and through this entire book, we discuss what these
26 words really mean and how they can be used to engage your customer
in a manner that generates meaningful results that are mutually beneficial
for both you, your business, your customers, and potential customers —
essentially, everyone!

Examining the five elements of mobile marketing

Take a look at that definition again and then check out the following bullet
points, which pull out and refine the five key elements of the definition of
mobile marketing:
 
✓ Organizations: Organizations are commercial entities — brands, agencies,
marketers, non-profits, enterprises (including individuals), and
so on — with products, services, and offerings they wish to deliver to
the market. In other words, organizations are you and your companies.
Mobile marketing works for any type of business.
 
✓ Practices: Practices consist of the many faces and facets of marketing
activities, institutional processes, industry player partnerships,
standards making, advertising and media placing and buying, direct
response managing, promotional engagements, relationship management,
customer services, loyalty management, and social media stewardship.
In other words, practices include all the things that you want to
oversee and do to engage your customers. All types of marketing practices
can be applied to mobile marketing.
 
✓ Engagement: This is the process by which you and your customers
interact in a two-way (push and pull) dialogue to build awareness, conduct
transactions, support, and nurture each other. Mobile marketing is
one of the most engaging forms of marketing because it’s done through
and with such a personal device.
 
✓ Relevancy: Mobile interactions can provide information (for example,
a user’s location, the time of day, activity, and so on). You can use this
information to understand the context of your customer’s current environment
in order to tailor and to create an appropriate experience that
is closely linked (dare I say relevant) to his current context. For example,
if someone in New York is doing a search on the mobile Internet
for pizza, you want to show them listings for pizza shops nearby and
not send them to Lima, Ohio, to get their pizza. Mobile marketing is
highly relevant.
 
✓ Mobile devices and networks: These terms refer to any wirelessenabled
device regardless of form factor or network. Although certain
types of devices have their limitations, you can execute

Identifying mobile consumers

Take a moment to think about the impact that the Internet and the personal
computer have had on our society and the world. Yet, as of this writing only
25% of the global population uses the Internet, and there are only about 1 billion
personal computers.
 
Now consider the potential impact of mobile devices. Worldwide, 4.6 billion
people subscribe to mobile services, and that number will likely increase to
5.5 billion by the end of 2010. Given that there are 6.8 billion people around
the world, we’re talking about nearly everyone on the planet. (About 2 billion
or so people still don’t have a mobile device, but you can sure do a lot of
marketing with the other 5 billion!)
 
In the United States, comScore (www.comscore.com) reports that around
234 million people subscribe to mobile phone services. In fact, the mobile
phone is becoming their primary phone. According to the Centers for Disease
Control, nearly 25% of the U.S. population has shut off their landline phones
and are mobile-only. (Another 15% of the U.S. has a landline phone, but reallydon’t use it.)
In addition, many of these people have multiple mobile devices.
 
There are more than 280 million mobile subscriptions in the U.S. (including
wireless cards for computers, e-readers, and so on).
 
The reach of the mobile device is staggering. Nearly everyone on the planet
can be engaged with a mobile device. In developing countries, it may be the
only way to engage someone digitally.
 
Your customer is mobile and you should be too. Consumers send trillions
of text messages around the world each year, view and download billions
of mobile Web pages and applications, and increasingly use their mobile
devices not just for personal communication, but also for leisure, entertainment,
work, and shopping.
 
A number of factors play a role in a consumer effectively responding to
mobile programs, including her age, gender, ethnicity, location, the type
of phone or mobile device she has, her employment levels, education, and
more. We can’t go into all the details here, but take it from us: mobile media
is not a channel just for the youth of the world; nearly everyone is using one
or more of the various mobile media paths discussed throughout this book in
one way, shape, or form. In fact, according to a Microsoft Advertising Mobile
Consumer Usage study, the mobile device is the third-most-used media,
coming just behind television and computers.

Exploring the types of mobile devices

When most people think about mobile marketing, the first thing that comes to
their mind is a mobile phone. It’s easy to look at a mobile phone and think, “It’s
just a phone,” and minimize all the rich capabilities that today’s mobile phones
have. It’s also easy to disregard the other mobile devices (like the Apple iPad
or iTouch, PlayStation Portable game terminals, e-books, and GPS devices)
that people carry with them as not being pertinent for mobile marketing.
 
The device in your hand isn’t really just a phone anymore. Sure, you can make
voice calls with it, but that function is just the tip of the iceberg. Today’s
mobile devices are also newspapers, maps, cameras, radios, stores, game
consoles, video music players, calculators, calendars, address books, stereos,
TVs, movie theaters, and concert halls.
 
For the purposes of mobile marketing, and the content of this book, you
should be familiar with three categories of devices:
 
✓ The feature phone: The feature phone (see Figure 1-1) is the most
common phone out in the market. As of June 2010, about 75% of the
phones carried in the U.S. are feature phones. These phones run a realtime
operating system (RTOS), which is a closed operating system — one
in which you can’t make modifications such as adding functionality to
a mobile browser or changing the user experience on the phone. There
are two common RTOSs: a home-grown Nucleus OS created by the
mobile phone’s manufacturer, and Qualcomm’s Brew (which is predominantly
used by Verizon Wireless in the United States).
Understanding the capability of the feature phone is important to you because it means
you will be limited to engaging these consumers with SMS, MMS, voice,
and limited mobile Internet.
 
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✓ The smartphone: The smartphone (see Figure 1-2) is a mobile device
that integrates mobile phone capabilities with the more common features
typically associated with a personal computer, including Internet,
applications, e-mail, entertainment, and rich media services. Moreover,
smartphones increasingly include location, motion and related sensors,
touchscreens, and full keyboards. Smartphones are categorized by the
operating system they use. The top smartphone operating systems
(OS) are the Apple iPhone, Google Android, Microsoft Windows Phone,
Research in Motion BlackBerry, HP Palm, Samsung Baba, Nokia Symbian,
and Linux-based operating systems such as the MeeGo, which is used
in Nokia high-end phones. Smartphones account for approximately 25%
of the U.S. market today. Nielsen expects that by the end of 2011, nearly
50% of consumers will be carrying a smartphone. More and more people
will have smartphones and be able to surf the Internet, use e-mail, and
download applications, but even by the end of 2011, a significant portion
of consumers will still be carrying feature phones, so you’ll want to cater
to their needs and phone capabilities too.
Keep in mind that it’s really easy to get caught up in the hype of a particular
manufacturer’s marketing. For example, for all the attention it
attracts, the iPhone accounts for only 5% of the U.S. market.
 
✓ Connected device: The connected device category is the industry catchall
term for all non-phone, mobile-enabled devices. In other words, it’s
a device that leverages mobile networks, but is primarily not a phone.
This includes tablet computers (Apple iPad, Cisco Cius, HP Slate),
e-readers (Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble Nook), portable gaming
devices (PlayStation Portable), and so on.
Web Marketing: 

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