As the number of people who own smartphones increases, so does the amount of money that companies are pouring into mobile marketing. A new report by Forrester Research, however, points out that marketing leaders are pouring money into the wrong sectors of mobile marketing.
What marketing leaders are doing wrong when it comes to mobile
As the Forrester report points out, marketers’ use of mobile technologies does not match customer behaviors – that “contrary to common belief, the savviest mobile users and heavy mobile app users continue to use SMS.” The mobile marketing boom is misguidedly leading companies to forego text messaging in lieu of building native mobile apps. The truth is, however, that these mobile apps don’t usually succeed. 80% of mobile apps in the Apple App store go unused – meaning most companies are losing money on their mobile marketing efforts.
If companies want to succeed in mobile, the report advises, they should focus on mobile marketing’s building blocks: SMS, mobile optimized websites, and mobile friendly web forms.
Starting your mobile marketing strategy with text messaging yields better results
The reasoning behind starting with text messaging is simple: people are “still ravenous” for SMS. Consider this: It’s the only technology used by the majority of phone users, and an overwhelming 74% of US adults send and receive a text message at least once weekly.
Starting with SMS means two things for companies. The first is that by using a tool that people are already comfortable with, companies can sidestep the high rate of abandonment and other issues that occur when customers don’t understand how to use, or even find, a mobile app.
Secondly, SMS allows you to engage in conversations with and data mine your customers. With text messaging, you can track their clicks, ask them for feedback, and gather information on their behavior to allow for a more thorough understanding of your audience so that you can achieve better results.
Mobile optimized web pages and forms should be a no-brainer
One easy way to engage consumers over text messaging is to send them links to mobile web pages. For any company interested in mobile marketing, mobile-optimized web pages and mobile friendly web forms should be a no-brainer. 21% of Americans use their phones to research physical products for purchase, and mobile-optimized web forms are useful for much more than just online shopping. Donations, sweepstakes entries, and RSVPs for events are just a few examples of when consumers need to type in and submit their information on a mobile phone.
Mobile marketing is a relatively new field with such rapid growth in the past five years that it’s easy to see why many companies jump the gun and focus on the most flashy parts of mobile marketing – mobile apps, QR codes, and the like – instead of starting with the basics of the field. But by slowing down and learning how to use SMS and optimizing your mobile website, your company has a much better chance of pulling ahead in the long run.