Forbes listed Mobile Marketing as one of The Top 7 Online Marketing Trends That Will Dominate 2014. In fact according to ITU, 6.8 billion out of 7.1 billion people on the planet subscribe to mobile-cellular. Marketers should understand and leverage this opportunity in order to engage more with their both current and potential customers by providing quicker service, since the minds and behaviours of consumers are changing.
As the way of communication has changed from one-way communication to two-way communication, customers are expecting a faster response from the brands to their questions and problems. In fact, most social media channels, such as Facebook and Twitter, are available in mobile app, allowing customers to post question and problem, and to share information or opinion in a more real-time way. Customers also expect that they are able to find any desired information and service on any communication device at their moment of need.
One simple way to overcome this change is to have a mobile-friendly website. It is believed that 95% of mobile users use their devices for local search, and 9 out of 10 mobile phone searches result in a purchase or visit. A Mobile-friendly website can be said to be a website that load fast and easy to navigate. In other words, mobile users do not need to scroll all over the page in order to view the whole information. In my opinion, here, the 7Cs Customer Interface can also come to play in a role to evaluate whether the website is mobile-friendly or not.
Another way to answer to this change is to have mobile applications. Although only 17% (1.2 billion out of 6.8 billion people) of mobile-cellular subscribers use mobile Apps, having a mobile app allows company to build relationship with customers who are outside the reach of traditional marketing. Not only mobile app meets the needs of customers to get response and view information fast, but it also provides convenience and makes the customers’ life easier by providing speed and utility.
However, keep in mind that having the mobile app itself is not enough. Companies are required to evaluate their capabilities and correspond their strategy with the quality and experience that they provide.
Look Starbucks, the No. 1 socially engaged company, for an example. Starbucks delivers highly frequent experiences that are highly positive to its consumers. It is best practice for companies who provide frequent experience and positive quality to expand their relationships with their customers. Thus, Starbucks had started to launch its mobile app since 2010 in the US. The app allows consumers to pay with its phone, check their rewards history, and find the nearest stores. The app is a success. It has 100,000 downloads/week, and 7 million active users. They process 3 million mobile payments in a week.
In short, both your social media and mobile marketing plan need to be strategically aligned with your business objectives and capabilities.
Marketing Strategy For The Mobile Mind Shift: Apr 19, 2013, Melissa Parrish, Forrester Research