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Why your business needs mobile marketing

The following article from Inc describes how every business can benefit from mobile marketing. As the author states while mobile technologies can help a business grow and gain brand awareness it is very important to implement the mobile strategy in accordance to how your customers use handheld devices and your service/product in their everyday lives.

These days it is rare to find someone who doesn’t rely on a smartphone or some kind of handheld device and a slew of mobile apps to stay productive at work, on the road or even in their home. There are so many mobile electronic gadgets on the market, including the popular iPhone, Palm Pre, BlackBerry Bold, iPad and Android tablet.

Let’s face it. Mobile devices have drastically shifted the online landscape to the point that in 2010 more than 50 percent of all Internet access was being done via handhelds of some sort. About 45 percent of mobile owners are using their devices to download social networking apps. In fact, 35 percent of Android and iPhone owners in the U.S. use apps such as Facebook before getting out of bed, according to a recent survey conducted by telecommunications equipment vendor Ericsson.

What’s more, reports by Forrester Research show that heavy app users are also heavy mobile Web users. The majority of North American consumers who have interacted with a brand using a mobile device have employed a combination of SMS, apps and browsers. Therefore, it should not be an “either or” decision for companies looking to develop mobile solutions, say Forrester market analysts.

Mobile is a booming industry but it is still also considered uncharted waters for many businesses looking to expand brand awareness. What most companies call their mobile strategy really just amounts to a collection of mobile tactics, according to Jeremiah Owyang, an analyst with the Altimeter Group, a research advisory firm based in San Mateo, Calif. In a blog post based on his presentation at the Mobile Marketing Strategies Summit in San Francisco, Owyang argues that companies should build a strategy based on the entire customer experience and not just based on technologies on hand or just on features and functions. This isn’t about guesswork. He says companies should evaluate how their customers are actually using mobile technologies across their entire customer lifecycle.

If integrating a mobile strategy is on your company’s radar, then these tips will help to get you going. Initiation of a mobile strategy should always begin with thinking about the basics: who, what, why and how. Start by asking yourself the following questions:

  • Who are your customers and who are you trying to reach?
  • Who will want to engage with your mobile content?
  • What tasks and needs does your audience have?
  • Why do your customers need information from you in a timely manner?
  • Why do you need to create content to be viewed both in standard web browsers and on mobile devices?
  • How will your target audience access your mobile content (which type of handheld device)?
  • How will they use your content in their daily lives?
  • How will you make your mobile content sticky and engaging?

*photo from flickr

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