By Kalin Kassabov
By now, everyone involved in any type of digital marketing knows that one of the biggest trends is the growth of mobile. As more people access the internet on smartphones and tablets, it’s essential to make your website and all of your marketing strategies mobile-centric.
As someone who helps many businesses of all sizes set up profitable mobile marketing campaigns, I’m frequently asked for advice on how to use mobile to build brand awareness and get more leads and customers. One of the things I tell people is that you have to do more than simply set up a mobile-friendly website, though that’s a good first step. Think about ways to build your brand and really engage with your mobile audience. Keep in mind that the tactics for reaching a mobile audience aren't quite the same as those you’d use for desktop users.
Create Helpful Mobile Apps
Apps really set mobile apart from other types of marketing. They give you a way to stay relevant in your customers’ minds. Make sure that your app actually does something useful; otherwise, after the novelty wears off, people will forget it’s there. Look at how some large brands engage people with their apps.
Chipotle’s app gives customers the ability to order so they don’t have to wait in line. Apps for ride-sharing services such as Uber and Lyft, of course, let people arrange rides whenever they want. Uber’s whole business model is based on an app. For the vast majority of businesses, the app will be something periphera, yet you can still think of a way to make it useful. Can your customers make appointments, order products or services, or complete an important task using your app?
Harness The Power Of Mobile Storytelling
The idea that branding and marketing work best through compelling storytelling isn’t new. However, there’s a common perception that mobile isn’t the ideal platform for telling stories. After all, you have limited space and you’re dealing with mobile users' short attention spans. Nonetheless, there are some ways to engage your mobile customers with engaging stories. Use elements that work best on mobile devices to tell your stories, like:
- Simple infographics to convey information
- Short videos
- Live streams: This includes broadcasting live from your opening, product launch or special event on Facebook Live, YouTube Live or another streaming platform.
- Gamification: Gaming elements can be used to teach customers how to use your products or help to promote your brand.
Improve Customer Service With Mobile
A large part of building your brand is providing outstanding customer service. I already mentioned the importance of creating useful apps: Whether it answers common questions about your business or describes your latest offerings, you can use technology to provide efficient service.
You could also set up mobile-friendly social media pages where customers can get help. On Twitter, for example, you can answer queries via direct message or by responding to tweets. Your Facebook page or Facebook Messenger is also a good avenue for providing customer service.
Use SMS to Interact With Your Customers
SMS or text message marketing, the service that my own company provides, is another powerful tool for branding. This is a form of permission-based marketing, as you should only send text messages to people who have opted-in to your list. Once people have agreed to receive your messages, you can use this for a variety of purposes. For example:
- Send out polls and surveys to get to know your customers better.
- Hold contests that people can enter via text.
- Have special sales and promotions only available to your mobile list.
- Use SMS to send traffic to your website or social media pages.
- Promote your text call-to-action campaigns in print ads, your website, business cards or any other marketing platforms.
These are some of the ways that mobile can help businesses of any type or size build their brands. Keep in mind that many (probably most) of your customers are going to find you on mobile. It’s only logical to look for ways to engage them.
Kalin Kassabov is a founder and CEO of ProTexting.com, a fast-growing enterprise level text message suite of services.