Mobile: The new ingredient in your marketing mix

“Mobile is the ultimate ”me, here and now medium”. writes Robert Thurner of the MMA (Mobile Marketing Association).  With it’s “ability to bridge between the online and offline worlds” (see our previous post), mobile is seen as the glue that unites all elements of the marketing mix.  And Unlike traditional media channels (TV, print, outdoors) or even the PC, mobile allows marketers to develop one-to-one, highly targeted relationships with their customers.

Marketers are already moving beyond the experimentation phase with mobile and integrating it into their online and offline marketing programs. And according to findings by eMarketer, mobile advertising will gain momentum over the next five years, reaching $1.56 billion by 2013. That means maximum ROI, not just on a channel-by-channel basis, but also across their marketing as a whole.

One-to-one with consumers
For acquiring new customers or retention of customer relationships mobile phones are the natural vehicle. They are portable which means they’re with us 24/7. They provide on-the-go, location-specific information which adds value and ease to our lives. And finally mobile phones engage us in ways no other medium ever could.  Smartphones allow an active content consumption - they offer the user a deep experience through rich media, which induces a high level of active engagement. According to digital marketing research firm InsightExpress, smartphone users were found to be four-and-a-half to five times more responsive to mobile advertising messages, in-app or in-browser, than online norms.

In fact, sixty percent of consumers receiving location-based SMS messages open them immediately, giving marketers the ability to influence consumers when they are in the mindset to take action.

Highly targeted and measurable

Another unique feature mobile has over other channels in the marketing mix, is that it allows marketers to identify quite easily their target audiences by virtue of which mobile OS they’re using. In addition, mobile adds a new dimension to the traditional web search model, that is on-the-go browsing. This means that today operators have extensive knowledge of their subscriber’s mobile behaviour - not only what they are searching for, but also what is the context (where and when).

With 224 million mobile users in the US, we certainly can expect 2010 will be the year in which we’ll see more retailers shifting their budgets to mobile.

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