[INFOGRAPHIC] Is Your Business Ready for the “SOcialMObileLOcal” Shopper? They may know more about your products than you do.
SMS Text Message Marketing represents a HUGE opportunity today… but it will eventually close, as most windows of opportunity do.. It won’t be long until the spammers jump in with both feet. As more marketers jump in, saturation will quickly be reached.
I get an occasional text ad for a payday loan or an online university, but it’s only about once or twice a month. As these intrusive text messages start clogging up our inboxes, SMS will lose its value as a trusted instant communication tool.
As ethical opt-in marketers, we must be sure to add value with every text message we send. If we don’t, our SMS list subscribers will treat us like spammers and opt-out.
The moral of the story… build your list NOW while SMS marketing is still a novelty to the general public. Once you have your list established, it will be a valuable asset to your business for a long time, as long as you keep your messages valuable and infrequent.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. Please comment below.
One of the things RPM offers is mass text messaging — which we also call SMS marketing, SMS for business, and many other things. Text messaging is a technology that’s exploding lately, and the best marketers are taking advantage of all its opportunities. It’s instant, it’s affordable, it’s highly effective at reaching people. There’s nothing else out there that can really compete. The days of traditional marketing using snail mail, radio and TV ads, and printed advertisements are over. Even email can’t compare. In case you’re not convinced, here are some concrete reasons why you should be incorporating SMS into your business’s marketing efforts. And when you’re ready to start, just give us a call.
People always have their cell phones on them.
According to last summer’s Conversational Advertising report conducted by Single Point for mobileSQUAREd, we all spend about 16 hours a day with our cell phones. Hell, I even sleep with mine.
Voice is dead. SMS is on the rise.
According to Nielsen Media, even with cell phones, voice spending has been trending downward, and text spending is expected to surpass it in the next three years. Why? Phone calls seem rude and intrusive, always catching us at the wrong time. Many people also consider them awkward and just prefer to communicate in text form, where they have time to contemplate everything being said. Think about this for a second: 8 TRILLION text messages will be sent in 2011. That’s HUGE!
Just check out this visualization of data from the Pew Research Center on smartphone usage if you’re still in doubt:
SMS is quickly becoming a well-accepted form of advertising.
Consumers are increasingly proving to be willing subscribers to opt-in services — as long as the message is relevant and some sort of value/incentive is provided. In fact, A2P SMS (application-to-person, like with bank alerts and offers from retailers) is expected to overcome person-to-person SMS by 2016.
Just take a look at these recent infographics. For example, YouGov recently conducted a study that revealed that 65% of people actually like offers on their mobile phones, and that the most effective mobile marketing medium for eliciting response is SMS:
And Promotional Codes compiled data to show the growth of the mobile advertising market, which is expected to reach $3.1 billion by 2013. Mobile coupon redemptions alone are expected to bring in $6 million in 2014. Examine the closeup for a breakdown of what consumers want to receive on their smartphones (grocery coupons, scannable barcodes, movie theatre promotions, retailer advertisements, etc.):
SMS is highly convenient.
Unlike the phone calls mentioned above, text messages are convenient. Both parties don’t have to be available at the same time, and your recipient’s phone doesn’t even have to be on. If your customer (or potential customer) receives a coupon, promotion, or event reminder from you, they can see it once they turn on or look at their phone, and reference back to it at any time. You don’t need their undivided attention or active response right when your message goes out; they can come back to it when it suits them best, like when they’re shopping online or passing your store.
The open rates for SMS are incredible.
Close to 98% of all text messages are read, and 90% are read within the first three minutes of being received. Compared to emails, which — according to MailChimp — usually only have about a 1-in-4 open rate, that’s incredible.
The redemption rates are also incredible.
Redemption rates for text message marketing range between 20% and 70%. Before you think 20% is low, compare it to the 1.5% average for TV, print, radio, and direct mail.
It’s instant — both to send and receive.
You don’t need to spend extensive amounts of time creating an ad and then waiting for it to go out. Just compose a short, relevant message, click send, and it should be received by your audience in a matter of minutes. No one has to wait anymore!
It’s short, it’s simple, it gets the point across.
At least if you do it right. Your customer doesn’t need to sift through tons of material or useless information to get to what they want. It drastically increases the chances that they will actually act upon the information you give them.
The results are measurable.
You can track the responses you receive, how often a certain promo code is redeemed, etc. I know there are few things more frustrating to a marketer than not being able to track ROI, so you can rest easy here.
Texts are cheap.
You pay very little on a “per contact” basis relative to other direct media, and the recipient essentially pays nothing.
SMS campaigns can be extremely targeted.
You’re not just blasting your message out at anyone and everyone, wasting time advertising to people who might not even be interested in your products or services. SMS campaigns reach people who have opted in to receive your messages, meaning they’re already interested. They can also be further segmented by specific needs, maximizing redemption rates — and thus profits — after each text blast.
No, it’s not just for teenagers.
Over 72% of adults are text messaging, and nearly 65% of mobile users in their 40s and 50% of users in their 60s regularly send texts. And those are last year’s figures, which are rising with every year.
Just take a look at this data from a Tatango poll on text message advertising. The group that’s most likely to opt into text message campaigns is actually between 25-35:
SMS is great for interactivity.
It’s easy for customers to text in a reply, or text-to-win, or text-to-donate, or click-to-call, or click on a link in a message they receive, or any other of a million interactive actions. And when it’s easy, they’re much more likely to do it.
You’re not limited to just text anymore.
A simple SMS message can contain links that smartphone users can open to go to your site, view a picture, watch a video, etc. — making it much more powerful than just a 160-character bit of text. And these capabilities are sure to increase astronomically, which brings me to my last point…
It’s the cutting edge of technology.
At least in the business world. Companies that are implementing SMS into its marketing campaigns are seen as tech-savvy, hip, and highly involved with their customers. That’s a good image to have.
Think about this for a second. The Apple iPhone 4S costs $400 with a 2 year contract.
The cheapest version was $199 and people are flocking to get them.
As yourself two questions:
- Does Apple ever have a problem selling their new iphone releases? Chances are if you’ve been on twitter or Facebook you’ve seen people ordering the new phone left and right.
- Do you think people who can afford a $200 or more phone might be good customers for local businesses?
And here’s a bonus question to ask yourself – when is the last time that you looked at a phone book INSTEAD of looking up the information on your smart phone?
More and more business owners are looking for mobile solutions for their business and website. Are you one of them? If so, contact me right away at
(800) 705-2360 or mobile @ rpmplano.com
so we can get started dominating your local market together.
Sorry global friends, US only on this one. I don’t have a clue about the mobile market outside the US.
Zero Moment of Truth (via Mobile & Search Marketing)
Online product information and reviews available at or near the point of purchase decision (i.e. your store, your parking lot, your competitor’s store) via a smartphone. This changes everything.
A “Zero Moment of Truth” is…
A BUSY MOM IN A MINIVAN, looking up decongestants on her mobile phone as she waits to pick up her son at school.
AN OFFICE MANAGER AT HER DESK, comparing laser printer prices and ink cartridge costs before heading to the office supply store.
A STUDENT IN A CAFE, scanning user ratings and reviews while looking for a cheap hotel in Barcelona.
A WINTER SPORTS FAN IN A SKI STORE, pulling out a mobile phone to look at video reviews of the latest snowboards.
A YOUNG WOMAN IN HER CONDO, searching the web for juicy details about a new guy before a blind date.
Would it surprise you to know that a full 70% of Americans now say they look at product reviews before making a purchase?
Or that 79% of consumers now say they use a smartphone to help with shopping?
Or that 83% of moms say they do online research after seeing TV commercials for products that interest them?
What was once a message is now a conversation.
Shoppers today find and share their own information about products, in their own way, on their own time.
Word of mouth is stronger than ever.
For the first time in human history, word of mouth is a digitally archived medium.
To learn more, watch the short video above (if you haven’t already), then download the free PDF below.
by Daniel Crivello – Correspondent Daily Herald
Published Sunday, August 21, 2011
Studies show 80 percent of consumers search online before making a purchase within a 10- to 20-mile radius.
If Google is the new Yellow Pages, then Gaede finds himself among a growing number of local business owners who have to wrangle with tech-savvy competition to achieve virtual visibility. Companies that can wield the largest resources to game the Google system — perfecting the art of search engine optimization, or SEO — earn the Internet’s most valuable real estate, Google’s first page. They can eclipse even those that are more locally relevant to customers.
It’s not a certain formula, but a using combination of techniques definitely helps one’s Google prominence. And maintaining that effort regularly costs money.
In the pre-digital age, naming your company with a letter combination like AA1 was all that was necessary to guarantee the top spot in local print listings.
Today, when few people even click beyond the first page online, small businesses that have not optimized their websites for Google have a much smaller chance to be found. In a recent study that included 8.9 million queries sampled over nine months, business sites received 95 percent of search traffic from page-one results, a sign that consumers favor websites with high ranking.
Rod Martin, an American Fork auto repair shop owner with nine employees, says he spends more than $6,000 a year on SEO and online marketing, illustrating the pressures today’s small companies face to stay relevant.
He stopped advertising in the Yellow Pages. “Yellow Pages is pretty much dead,” he said. Half his customers find him via Google.
“To be No. 1, your website needs word tags, blogs, keywords, changing content, having relevant content, linking to other sites and other sites linking back to you,” Martin said. “Having your bother-in-law do your website … I’m sorry, it isn’t effective. It’s time for the pros to step in.”
Martin’s company, World Class Auto Repair, ranks first out of seven competitors on Google under the keywords “auto repair American Fork” in both map and website results. He recently hired a computer firm to develop an attractive Facebook page for the company.
“Word of mouth used to mean that Fred told his neighbor Brian about an auto mechanic,” Martin said. “Now it’s Fred and Sally and Suzy and Tom on Facebook sharing my business with their friends. Word of mouth is now social media.”
“One of the most important things is to be proactive,” said Anais Moody, the company’s marketing and communication specialist. “It’s hard to stay on top. Google is constantly changing its algorithm.”
NorthStar Alarm’s new computer programmer will also be tasked with developing a mobile phone application, the new megaphone for marketing.
According to Web publication TechCrunch, local search by mobile phones has grown 50 percent year over year and become the No. 1 access method for local information.
Industry experts predict business search will not only be done on the phone but through friends’ recommendations on social media websites like Facebook. Even Google itself, feeling the pressure to include social circles in its search, recently unveiled a website called Google Plus.
The website, which quickly grabbed the public’s attention, uses circles of families, friends and interests, potentially assigning trust to people by topic.
The data on online recommendations are stark: More than 70 percent of respondents in a Harris Interactive study claim family members’ or friends’ reviews exert a “great deal” or “fair amount” of influence on a decision to use or not use a particular company, brand or product.
So if Google is today’s Yellow Pages, will social media be the Yellow Pages of tomorrow?
SearchEngineLand just posted a great article on who is using (scanning) QR codes, and are QR codes here to stay? Here are some highlights…
The benefit of QR codes is that a marketer or publisher can put anything “behind” the code: a website URL or landing page, or a product detail page with lots of relevant and highly specific information. QR codes are also highly versatile and can appear in digital and traditional media or on product packaging.
QR Code scanning is a form of mobile search — yes, that’s what I said. People are actively seeking additional information by scanning the code. It’s a visual query input. In the absence of the code they would type (or speak) a query into a search box.
Proponents of QR Codes in the US cite growing usage by smartphone owners and marketers. There are a number of successful case studies out there, many of them involving traditional media.
Now a new report from comScore, a party with no agenda around QR Codes, reflects growth among selected mobile users: affluent males, 18-34 years old in particular:
More than half of all QR code scanners were between the ages of 18-34 (53.4 percent). Those between the age of 25-34, who accounted for 36.8 percent of QR code scanners, were twice as likely as the average mobile user to engage in this behavior, while 18-24 year olds were 36 percent more likely than average (index of 136) to scan. More than 1 of every 3 QR code scanners (36.1 percent) had a household income of at least $100,000, representing both the largest and most over-represented income segment among the scanning audience.
Beyond this comScore found that the majority of QR code scanning was happening in magazines and newspapers, or on product packaging. This illustrates one of the virtues of QR codes: they can be integrated into the physical world to make products and printed media more “dynamic,” and capture analytics and consumer response to those offerings or ads.
I’m sure you’ve seen them around, those strange square pixelated blobs, known as QR Codes.
Don’t be scared. I know they look strange, but they’re just shortcuts to make your life easier.
Shortcuts to a…
Calendar event, contact information/business card, email address, geo location, phone number, sms, text, URL, or Wifi network connection.
For example, this QR Code, when scanned by your smartphone will take you to http://RPMplano.com.
Here are a few ideas on how YOU can use QR Codes in your business.
Send customers to:
- Your email opt-in page to subscribe to your newsletter
- Your Google Places profile to leave a glowing review
- Download your digital business card
- Download a free digital gift
- Connect to your free Wifi network
To generate your own QR Codes for free, go to…