Businesses and organizations are struggling with the many challenges that mobile marketing and advertising present. Apps or not, the use of banner ads, check-ins and other services. Mixing online and off-line marketing, through the use of QR codes, for example. How much should be spent on mobile advertising — as a percentage of total advertising or just digital advertising.
In fact, the IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) created a mobile marketing center of excellence to help.
Your goals for mobile and mobile marketing, no doubt, are to maximize value and branding, to convert prospects, to increase sales.
Mobile analyst, Tomi Ahonen, was part of a mobile marketing workshop and shares some of his favorite examples of mobile marketing and advertising:
How do you engage with fans? One great example comes from Sweden. Veronica Maggio is a Swedish pop star. She decided to reward her biggest fan with a peculiar treat – his number would be the target phone number to call, to hear the Ringback tone version of Veronica’s newest hit song, ‘Lordagen den Femtonde Mars’ (Saturday the 15th of March). This is not a ringtone. This is a ringback tone. It means you have to call that phone number to listen to it. She made ringback the launch method of her song. Her fans could not hear the song anywhere else, not on radio, not on MTV video, not online, not any other way. The fan – his name is Firat Delen, an 18 year old boy in Sweden – had his phone ringing nonstop for two weeks as the fans of Veronica kept calling his number, to hear the song. When Veronica finally launched the song for sale, it hit number 1 on the Swedish charts. Cool. And by the way, many Swedes, who called his number, didn’t know of ringback tones, so it also helped bring new users for Ringbacks in Sweden. But this is a cool way to do something different in music marketing. Not to mention a great treat to the fan club.
Honda motorcycles in Japan introduced K-Tra in 2008, the fan club experience where fans can create an avatar and then have the avatar take rides on real Honda motorcycles based on their real riding in Japan. Any owner of a Honda motorcycle can sign up to be a host to take one virtual hitch-hiker along. The movement is tracked based on the mobile phone of the rider, and when the motorbike stops moving, the hitchhiker is deposited into that spot, until another Honda motorbike rider comes by, and your avatar is once again on the move, having an adventure. You get an alert of course whenever your avatar is picked up, and then you can monitor its travels via a map on your phone. Cool. Actual fans and owners have of course then met up in the real world too, etc. How many? 20,000 Honda fans have taken rides of over 1.8 million kilometers (over 1.1 million miles) this way (according to Infinita 2011).
North Face the outdoors brand ran a contest to ‘Conquer China’. They had a blank China map visible in the stores and online and on mobile. Anyone could take their mobile phone, go to any location in China and if first to that location, ‘claim it’ for North Face, just like explorers claimed islands and mountains etc for their kings and lords. A red North Face flag was planted virtually to that location, and you were the person who virtually discovered it first. The map was then starting to populate with little red flags all over. Always the first to any location would be its owner, not like with FourSquare with whoever came there the most to become its mayor. And in a campaign of under three weeks, a total of 650,000 red flags were planted in China. Every flag also of course gave its heroic explorer a coupon for a discount at North Face. Does this kind of marketing work? Try doubling sales! Grew sales in fact by 106%. And it drove a lot of footfall to North Face’s stores, helping fans find the stores.
Blockbuster in the UK. They sent out 1 million offers and coupons to their opt-in database. 100,000 of those mobile coupons were redeemed. So the campaign achieved a measurable 10% conversion rate. Imagine how powerful that is! Compared to online where we might see 0.2% click-through rates on some banner ads. And on TV we don’t know who saw it and which ad of a given ad campaign actually drove sales. But I’m not impressed with 10% conversion.
Tomi offers several more examples. The point is that when used strategically, and when seeking to uncover how your advertising or service can truly benefit the user, than mobile marketing can be phenomenally successful.
Smartphones empower users more than ever. Reveal to them how your business, your organization, your product, enhances this new-found power and establish an ongoing connection with each of them. You both benefit.