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  • Goin’ Mobile – Taking Your Business to Customers on the Go

    6 October 2010

    Goin' MobileWith the rapid growth of mobile devices in the US, there’s no denying that mobile internet use is quickly on the rise. In fact, in 2008 an important milestone was reached when mobile access to the Internet exceeded desktop computer-based access for the first time.  Since then, U.S. mobile Internet users have continued to steadily increase from 50.9 million in 2008 to 85.5 million in 2010, with a projected growth to 101.1 million in 2011. This increase in mobile web usage continues to create a tremendous amount of opportunity to reach customers on the go.

    Businesses large and small are increasingly using the mobile web as a platform to reach consumers. In fact, a recent study by the Online Publishers Association reports some interesting facts:

    • About one-in-ten mobile Web users said they have made a purchase based on a mobile web ad
    • 23% said they have visited a mobile web site
    • 13% said they have requested more information about a product or service from their mobile device, and
    • 11% said they have gone to a store to check out a product due to a mobile web site or ad

    Since most mobile web users are primarily focused on accomplishing a specific task, the key to leveraging mobile web is to provide users with the perfect balance of the right amount of information with a platform that is fast and convenient.  Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) is the specific platform that’s used to create mobile web sites optimized for easy access from mobile devices, including those with limited processing capabilities and smaller screens.

    Mobile Marketing

    Imagine this scenario: You’re a restaurant owner. You send out a text to your subscribers that says: “It’s 11 am, where’s your lunch?  Waiting for you at the Main Street Grill of course! Show this text to your server and receive a free milkshake with your meal.”

    The text goes to everyone on your subscriber list. Within moments, they forward your text to their friends and coworkers. Soon, you start seeing some familiar faces walk in the door. You notice an increase in your foot traffic that day. And the next day. And even the days and weeks following.

    That’s the power of Mobile Marketing.  Mobile marketing is a permission-based marketing tool that lets a business owner reach their audience in a way no other marketing medium can – instantaneously, through text messages, directly to their mobile devices.  Mobile marketing is a great way to connect, engage, and communicate with your customers, because you can so much with it:

    • Send a simple message to create top-of-mind awareness
    • Introduce a new product or service
    • Offer a “limited-time” coupon or discount code
    • Promote a Facebook Page or other social media community
    • Entice consumers to visit a mobile website for information or specials
    • Encourage entry in a participation-based campaign, such as a contest or sweepstakes

    And with a projected 246 million mobile device users in the US (that’s over 79% of the population), it’s easy to see why mobile marketing is fast becoming a major player in the world of consumer communications.

    With the increase in ownership, decrease in price, and advancement in technology for mobile devices, mobile marketing is definitely here to stay.  It is a powerful marketing tool for growing your business easily, affordably, and exponentially.  Have you done any mobile marketing or do you know anyone who has? Share your experience in the comments.

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    20 Responses to Goin’ Mobile – Taking Your Business to Customers on the Go

    1. Aluminum Cases October 6, 2010 at 11:42 am #

      Mobile internet usage is definitely taking off. In the early stages it will likely be difficult for some businesses to take advantage of this trend. For some businesses there is little reason for customers to buy through a cell phone instead of a computer. In those niches the customers may just assume that the business wouldn’t have a mobile website. So don’t go out and pay to get a mobile version of your website unless the demand is actually there.

    2. Web Design LA October 7, 2010 at 4:53 am #

      Mobile website is really helpful in today’s world. I always use my Iphone on the go. Every I use internet on it as I have to travel so much. I also my business website for mobile.

    3. car battery October 8, 2010 at 8:47 am #

      World is definitely going mobile more and more. Just about everyone has a presence in some way or the other. Examples like the one you described will get more and more commonplace. I was watching some of the ‘Microsoft in 2019′ videos and it seems like in a few years, mobile devices will be as much a part of life as talking.

    4. Mauricio Malchevic October 8, 2010 at 3:44 pm #

      Excellent post. Many companies do not care about the mobile version of their site and by ignoring this factor, they are losing an exceptional opportunity in a very profitable market. Also the .tel domain has a very good potential.

    5. tires October 8, 2010 at 10:15 pm #

      I haven’t experimented yet in mobile marketing but I do know its definitely a huge market with alot of potential especially for those who are able to spot a trend or see out into the horizon and be an innovator before it occurs.

      Till then,

      Jean

    6. Pet Camera October 9, 2010 at 9:19 am #

      I think anyone that doesn’t plan for this market is going to be left wondering why their online business died. That restaurant scenario is a perfect example of how to leverage a contact list. When you combine this with emerging social interaction technologies like foursquare.com, the sky is the limit.

    7. Carlton October 9, 2010 at 11:48 am #

      Mobile business is really interesting. I don’t know how search engines will handle SEO for mobile. There is not bug space for keywords and links etc.

    8. JohnAtBlogtrepreneur October 10, 2010 at 9:56 am #

      All great points above! We’re quickly headed toward a single-device existence I think, so this technology and market is just in its infancy. Will be exciting to see what the future holds and to say we watched it happen!

    9. Carlton October 11, 2010 at 11:29 am #

      Do people really like their mobiles ringing all the time with marketing sms?

    10. email search October 11, 2010 at 3:40 pm #

      We shouldn’t assume that mobile marketing is just for consumer marketing; it can be used just as effectively in business-to business marketing. Consider adding mobile alerts if you market to businesses – such as notices about upcoming Webinars or podcasts, or offers of on-site incentives to conference attendees.

    11. Computer Tips Tricks October 12, 2010 at 8:05 am #

      Mobile market is indeed growing very rapidly. More and more companies are trying to adapt to it but some users find marketing sms annoying and this is indeed the case that trouble us a lot.

    12. Aluminum Cases October 12, 2010 at 12:26 pm #

      While there is definitely plenty of opportunity with mobile marketing, it is not something that I will be jumping into anytime soon. With the way things are going, perhaps cell phones will be able to load full websites soon. Maybe there won’t be a need for mobile versions of websites for long. It is just a rapidly changing market, that it would be tough to stay on top of.

    13. printandradio October 12, 2010 at 10:57 pm #

      Mobile website is really helpful in today’s world.Mobile business is really interesting.

    14. car battery October 13, 2010 at 12:04 am #

      Phones will probably never load full websites because it’s simply a matter of size constraints. Unless we want to lose the compact advantage of mobile phones, the screen size will almost perennially drive the requirement of a mobile specific layout for every website. Otherwise it will be very cumbersome to browse. Perhaps a holographic solution might be the answer to that, but that’s a long ways away if ever.

    15. Andrew @ Blogging Guide October 13, 2010 at 4:36 am #

      I think mobile marketing is the fastest communication media as well as advertising medium and this is the reason why a lot of people use it. So business owners should follow the trend and make sure that they’re updated on what’s going on in the mobile world.

    16. JohnAtBlogtrepreneur October 13, 2010 at 2:51 pm #

      @Aluminum: I agree with you. There are some companies out there that will manage all your mobile marketing for you, and I think that’s the way to go. Not cheap, but if I was going to do it at all, it would be through one of them.

    17. Simon October 14, 2010 at 2:11 am #

      Great post, what are your thoughts about developing your sites with mobiles in mind? Do you have a separate mobile version of your site or does everyone see the same no matter how they are viewing your site?

      I have been looking into making all my sites mobile friendly recently and it doesn’t seem too hard to do effectively.

      Thanks again for a great post.

    18. Mauricio Malchevic October 15, 2010 at 1:19 am #

      @Simon, there are very few websites that are mobile friendly. Most of them are virtually Innavigable. It is better if you develop a separate mobile version of your site. This version should be very simple (i.e. show only posts or important info and not all the features).

    19. Simon October 15, 2010 at 2:45 am #

      @Mauricio, I agree totally although I’m not sure if innavigable is a real word (I love it though!!) Most sites are completely useless on phones although some phones do make it a bit easier. I do think it is a bit mad though as everyone is predicting that internet traffic is moving over to the mobile platform very quickly!

      Does anyone know of a good wordpress plugin to befriend your site to mobiles? I have seen a few about but I haven’t heard much feedback about any of them yet…

    20. books October 15, 2010 at 2:58 pm #

      I’m excited to see some of the mobile start-ups grow their products and user bases’. There’s a number that are doing B2C texting services which should see a ton of growth.

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