Each year needs its trends. As for marketing there lately is a lot of attention directed towards mobile marketing. Mobile Marketing provides new, unknown possibilities for marketeers. Yet we often receive questions about what Mobile Marketing actually is. This article tries to offer some clarification.
Mobile Marketing can be defined as the use of marketing communication techniques via mobile phones. This involves the use of several information carriers: SMS and MMS, voice messages and mobile internet sites. Mobile Marketing can furthermore be divided into following subcategories.
Mobile Advertising: communicating non personalised messages or advertisements on mobile phones. This form of marketing is still in an early stage. In Belgium for example, it recently became possible to place banners at Mobistar on PlazZza. Internationally the first providers of paid search and sponsored links are appearing. AdMob for example has quickly grown into a worldwide mobile advertising network.
Mobile Direct Marketing: this comprises techniques that allow to deliver personalised messages or promotions individually to clients or prospects on their mobile phones. SMS and MMS mailings are the most often used. Managers of clubs often send their customers a SMS message to invite them to special events. Also the mobile operators and the sellers of mobile content such as ring tones or games are increasingly using this marketing method. It is important to notice that the explicit permission, given in advance, of the customer (opt-in) is required.
Mobile Interactive Marketing: the mobile phone is the perfect tool to receive response to a promotional campaign and consequently build up an interactive relation with your consumer. Techniques as SMS&Win, SMS-to-mail and SMS-to-WAP are on the rise. Response rates are usually higher than expected. In this regard, the recent launch of PlazZza offers the marketeer unique and rather low-cost possibilities. The consumer sends a hitcode for free, for example ‘FCB’ for Club Brugge, to the shortcode 4444. He immediately received a free SMS containing a link to the mobile internet site of the advertiser. On this site he can then find further information about the brand, promotions and contact details. In France this technique was used in 2006 on Gallery, the equivalent of PlazZza, by leading brands such as Coca-Cola, Citroen, Nike and Société Générale.
Mobile Participative Marketing: the mobile phone will unmistakably fulfill a prominent role in the growth of the Web 2.0, moreover as a very suitable device to grab content and send it to a central platform. Mobile blogging is a nice example for this. This was recently introduced on a large scale in Belgium by Proximus at the launch of the Pay&Go Generation cards. Members of this club can send pictures by MMS to their moblog for free. Without any large promotion, this campaign presently has a lot of success.
From Advertising to Participation: it is beyond doubt that there exists a large range of mobile marketing techniques. Especially the latter creates new possibilities to form a strong connection and community feeling for a brand.