Propped up high above the corner of E. 3rd Street and Bowery in Manhattan, a 100-foot long Lenny Kravitz invites us to send him a text message, a “short code”, on behalf of Absolut vodka to receive a free downloadable mp3. Amidst the urban revitalization in East Baltimore, a developer provides a short code outside Hopkins Row, the $900,000 high-tech townhouses he’s building two blocks from Johns Hopkins Hospital. This code provides interested parties with more information about the innovative project.
There is no doubt that mobile phones are the most buzzed about marketing tool lately. More and more billboards, banners, print ads, and television commercials are providing these short codes to further connect with their audience.
It is not that surprising of a development, either. Cell phone technology is rapidly advancing and has now surpassed the number of landlines in the world as families across the globe are shutting off their home phones in exchange for individual mobile phones.
According to Promo Magazine, “Airwide Solutions claims 89% of major brands are planning to use mobile phones as a marketing medium by 2008.”
But as industry experts agree, what makes mobile marketing successful is an organic marketing strategy. When mobile is part of a larger plan it enables marketers to create an interactive experience out of traditionally non-interactive mediums. Television, radio, and print can now come alive and invite consumers to participate in a true one-on-one experience with the brand.
It also allows marketers to be in touch with their audience virtually anytime, anywhere. When consumers skip through commercials on their Tivo or install a tough-as-nails pop-up blocker, mobile phone give marketers the opportunity to jump over some of those hurdles and involve the consumer in a pull strategy.
It’s an anti-spam solution because consumers must request the information.
Here are some ways mobile marketing can be used:
- Coupons can be downloaded directly to mobile phones & scanned at checkout.
- As a customer walks past a store, their mobile phone can alert them to a sale
- Engage a television audience to determine the outcome of a show
- Submit questions directly to on-air radio personalities to direct discussions & debates