Did you know that there are four times the number of cell phones in the world compared to PCs?1 And that 20% of U.S. households have gone mobile-only for their phone lines? There’s no doubt about it, mobile and smartphone users are growing monthly.
Here are some trends for marketers to be aware of:
Top Trend: Text Messaging
Over 130 Billion texts are sent each month.1 Text messaging, the most widely-used form of mobile marketing, gets, on average, 7x the response rate compared to emails. And since texting requires no incorporation of fancy graphics, the process is relatively simple to use even for non-techie business owners.
Marketing Ideas for Text messaging1
- Staff messages
Retail Use Trends
Retailers are on the hunt to find ways for consumers to use their phones to enhance the overall shopping experience.
- Bar Coded Coupons. Scannable bar codes on consumers’ phones to get, for example, a free drink.
- Pay by phone. Starbucks is testing Starbucks Card Mobile, which allows customers to pay for coffee in the shop with their phone.
- Integration with real-time data. Ace Hardware is combining weather forecasts with text alerts to hawk more shovels.
- Building out their profiles in localized smartphone apps. Gap Outlet, Sports Authority, and REI are experimenting with the new crop of local smartphone apps, such as Yowza and FourSquare.
- Smart Phone Applications. The number of smartphone applications is on the rise and each month brings new ways for customers to engage with businesses, receive news and promotions.
- Augmented Reality.2 This is a buzzword that describes the users’ experience of viewing your surroundings through your smartphone so you get an overlay of information. See http://www.wikitude.org/ for an example.
- Mobile websites. Websites optimized for mobile users or smartphone applications used to cost prohibitive for many companies but now mobile website tools such as Mobilizer and MoFuse make it more of a do-it-yourself situation.
If you’ve gone mobile with your business, what ideas are you trying? We’d love to hear!