Tap Into Mobile Marketing
There is an old Chinese proverb that states: “The best time to plant a tree was 10 years ago. The second best time is now.” For mobile marketers, the best time to start building your mobile subscriber list was five years ago. The second best time is now. Mobile is more than a viable channel in the marketer’s quiver today. Your window of opportunity now is open to integrate mobile campaigns into your marketing mix and drive a truly differentiated customer experience across channels.
The U.S. population currently stands at just above 300 million, and 75 percent of the population has a mobile handset. According to JupiterResearch, this number is expected to grow to more than 86 percent by 2011. According to M:Metrics, a research firm that tracks mobile consumption, American consumers increasingly are using short message (SMS) and multimedia messaging services (MMS).
While U.S. usage of SMS and MMS messaging is on the rise, only 50 percent of U.S. mobile handsets today have SMS capability, and only 14 percent of U.S. handsets can send and receive MMS. Additionally, many of those SMS-capable handsets have plans where the user must pay for text messages sent to and from the handset. These will continue to be gating factors to the growth of the mobile market. That said, the mobile channel still has clear potential for U.S. marketers for three reasons:
1. It is relevant. Marketers can find shoppers near their retail stores and draw them into their places of business.
2. It is personal. The ability to keep our cell phone numbers as we move jobs, carriers or change phones makes it an uniquely identifiable medium.
3. It is engaging. Americans increasingly are tied to their mobile devices for a variety of activities, including watching videos, listening to music, reading and responding to e-mail, and, of course, for use as a phone.