Want To Grow Your Business? Try Smartphones
20 years from now, instead of citing apple pie, people will be saying "As American as Angry Birds" ("tax fraud" and "obesity" being close seconds). With mobile taking off into the hearts of the public one slingshotted red bird at a time, marketing to phone and tablet platforms is becoming more and more legitimate, offering lot of real and creative ways to grow you and your clients' businesses. I recently wrote an article for those new to mobile marketing for our sister publication Print Professional, which you can read right here. I also way over-researched the subject and ended up collecting more information than I could possibly print in the article. Reproduced below is some of the overflow, an interview I did with Christina "CK" Kerley, B2B marketing specialist for NYC-based CKB2B. I liked the Kerley interview not only because it came out well, but also because she provided a lot of great links and video too. If you're looking for more information on mobile marketing, I recommend checking out her site at www.ckb2b.com.
Promo Marketing: If someone is planning to use QR codes to promote a business, what's the #1 thing you would recommend they do?
Christina "CK" Kerley: The first item to determine is the specific goal they are seeking to achieve-let me give you several examples. Is the business using a QR code on a business card so as to make it easier for the target audience to collect contact information and store it in their smartphones for future reference? Or is the business using the QR code on a promotional item to provide an extra incentive for the target audience (as with couponing and special offers)? Are they using the QR code on a piece of collateral to extend the conversation by linking to a video that promotes the business? Or perhaps using the QR code on a piece of tradeshow signage that links to a stream of SMS alerts to which users can subscribe to receive new product information? There is no wrong answer and there are truly a myriad of ways to use QR codes. But the company needs to first decide what specifically they are looking to achieve, which can span increased convenience for their target audience, extra incentives for their users and new ways to engage with their customers.
PM: Could you share an anecdote or a few short examples about successful QR code marketing? What do you think made it go so well?
CK: I'll give you both a B2B and a B2C example. An article on mobile marketing that I wrote last year that ran in a popular B2B Marketing publication featured a QR code at the end of the article which linked to my archive of mobile-marketing videos (http://www.ckb2b.com/ck-video-clips.html). The feedback was very favorable because the QR code offered the target audience-which was seeking advice and best practices on mobile marketing-a way to learn more on the subject through video clips in addition to the longer text article. Thus readers were able to have a dual experience of text and video learning. (See that article here and go to the end and see the QR code.)
Now to give a B2C example, the popular racecar driver Danica Patrick features a QR code on her racecar and her racing apparel. It links her fans to her schedule and her social network presence. This again is a terrific strategy as it links her fans to information they seek. In fact, in this manner I see her QR code as her new logo that, instead of a flat text treatment, actually transports users to deeper information and increases the bond between brand and user. (See here http://2d-code.co.uk/nascar-with-qr-code)
Also see this AMAZING example of QR code as business strategy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7HnR02kJxY
PM: If someone is planning to use SMS marketing to promote a business, what's the #1 thing you recommend they do?
CK: SMS is a very personal channel-a business is literally asking permission to send text alerts to a user's mobile device. There are really two critical pieces here: first, whatever communications a business is promoting via SMS must be of high-value, be that value an incentive or a new product, and the business must not overload the SMS channel. Otherwise users will quickly opt-out of all SMS alerts, and they'll never subscribe again. In essence, it's all about quality, not quantity.
PM: I hear a lot of back and forth about the value of mobile sites. Some seem to think that because of advancing phone technology and the rise of bigger-screen tablets, mobile optimization is becoming less important. Is this true, false, or somewhere in-between?
CK: Go here to read my thoughts on mobile websites (they are pivotal for all businesses!) and you can see my own example: http://www.ck-blog.com/cks_blog/2012/01/mobile-marketing-101-optimizing-content.html
Thanks for reading guys! See you all next week!
MONDAY MIKE FACT: I'm reading a huge book about presidents right now. I'm up to James Monroe (#5 if you're wondering). He was apparently fun, charismatic and kind of dumb. Who knew?!