Statistics speak volumes.
- The US mobile web population will be up almost 25% by the end of this year.
- By 2015, more than three in five mobile users and almost half the total US population will be using the mobile Internet.
- Smartphone usage will increase to 38% of mobile users and 28.8% of the overall population by the end of this year.
- The number of smartphone users is set to increase 49.6% this year and continue growing at a steady double-digit pace through 2015.
(Statistics and projections from recent eMarketer research)
The unprecedented growth of mobile phone usage is providing more opportunities for businesses to reach their market than ever before. After seeing these statistics you may find yourself saying, yes, mobile marketing a big deal and a great investment for my marketing budget, but where do I begin?
You should start with an understanding of what mobile marketing outlets are available and what benefits they have. Here is a rundown of the top six mediums:
Mobile Website – There are several projections that in the next few years mobile Internet browsing will be more widely used than PC/MAC Internet browsing. Developing a mobile website is typically the first step in your mobile marketing and will increase the satisfaction of your viewers as they visit your site on their mobile phone.
Mobile Application – According to Ovum’s app download forecasts, there will be 14 billion applications downloaded this year. That’s over 400 apps per second! Not only are mobile applications great for increasing brand equity, they can also provide substantial revenue.
Mobile Ads – Mobile ads are what you see in the free version of so many mobile apps. With over 400 apps downloaded per second, there is a lot of opportunity to increase brand awareness and incite action amongst a targeted audience.
Location-Based Apps – One of the fastest growing areas of mobile marketing is location-based services. Consumers often use applications such as FourSquare, Where, Google Places, Yelp, and Merchant Circle to find out what’s going on around them and find special deals. This is a great way to let consumers who are physically near to your business find out about you!
QR Codes – A technology originally used in the manufacturing process, this 2D code allows smart phone users to gain information simply by scanning the code with their phone’s camera. The matrix-like code can be easily developed and is often used to link on-the-go consumers to mobile-friendly websites.
Mobile Coupons – An old concept utilizing new technology. Use QR codes, mobile apps, text messages or your mobile website to offer coupons and entice consumers to shop at your store (brick and mortar or virtually).
The question is not whether or not you should integrate mobile technology into your marketing strategy, but which way works best for your company.