Statistics show that there are four times as many cell phones in the world as there are personal computers. Nearly everyone has them and they are one of the most popular purchases in this country. Mobile devices are used abundantly for personal uses and extensively in the business world for general communication and as mobile marketing solutions for advertisers. They are used to keep in touch with friends and family and age is not a deciding factor. They are constant companions to moms and dads, old and young, and everyone in between. Many households today have given up their traditional landlines in lieu of this multi-purpose mobile device.
Many people consider mobile phones as their most important piece of technology, especially those in the 18-29 age group. They are not only used for making phone calls, but more importantly for sending and receiving text messages which is done almost twice as often. SMS or Short Message Service is the component of the phone or mobile web device that allows for text communication. It is the most widely used data application in the world today with over 2.4 billion active participants. That equates to almost 75% of all cell phone owners using them for texting purposes.
With these astounding numbers, the doors are wide open for text messaging to be used as a tool for highly effective mobile marketing solutions. Mobile companies often text their customers with offers of new and exciting products and to remind them when their bills are due. Other companies allow customers to opt-in for text notices of special offers and other important information.
Mobile marketing solutions available through texting also include the sending of coupons, alerts, promotions, contests, sweepstakes, fun trivia and voting opportunities for surveys and competitions such as those used for popular television talent shows. Many retailers are currently budgeting and gearing up for extensive marketing campaigns as a permanent part of their advertising budget. Numerous fast food restaurants have launched mobile sites with their texting programs and even iPhone apps to place food orders for pick-up. Major department stores and big box retailers pump up the volume on mobile marketing at holiday times.
Even magazines and newspapers are getting in on the action through iPhone app coupons, text interaction by participating in news polls and chances to win gift cards. Red Box movie rentals give customers the opportunity to opt-in for free movies coupons along with limited advertisements. Scannable bar codes on phones are being used for coupons by various businesses. And Starbuck customers are able to pay for their coffee with their phones.
Whereas straightforward and aggressive advertising through text messages would create ill-will and irritated consumers, creative advertising campaigns are efficiently engaging these same consumers to participate in appealing and fun activities that entertain as they advertise. Through skillful marketing, the consumer barely knows that the texts are being used for marketing purposes. This allows advertisers to add immediate excitement and enthusiasm to their customer relationship.
Mobile devices have created a new dimension to the world of advertisement. Text messaging and phone apps are storming the world with creative and innovative mobile marketing solutions. Expect to see amazing opportunities flood the marketplace in the coming months and years. Businesses that are on top of their game will be investigating ways to incorporate it into their marketing plan.