I’ve been a business owner my whole life, and have a much larger list of what I’ve done WRONG than what I’ve done RIGHT. I’m constantly obsessing over how to grow my business; do I need more advertising, is the messaging right, will I get a higher open rate if I sent simple text emails instead of HTML, and on and on.
It’s easy to lose sight of business fundamentals as we’re approached by new opportunities to spend our money, uhem…’invest in higher ROI and more measurable small business marketing solutions.’ I’ve tried them all. Some work, some don’t…but few things have stuck around over time. When I need a good laugh, I open up the scrapbook and take a stroll down the ‘advertising/marketing’ expense column of my P&L and reminisce about all of the dollars I spent trying to grow more dollars. Nice.
Then I had lunch with a buddy of mine years ago, and when I expressed my frustration with this schizophrenic world of advertising/marketing, he looked at me with a calm grin on his face and said “Alex, the key to growing your business is relationships. You need to make more of them each day, and invest in the ones you’ve already got. Simple as that. If you stayed in touch with everyone you’ve ever done business with, what kind of impact would that have on you right now?”
There’s me: deer in headlights. So simple, and obvious…dammit! But that has little to do with the shinny gadgets and widgets I love to spend money on. Now what!?!
At the core of every successful business is a good CRM (Client Relationship Management) tool – a way to help organize and manage those relationships that are the life blood of business growth. Different industries have different solutions, but the premise is the same: know who your customers are, and treat them as an important part of your business growth by investing in a relationship with them.
This is not an easy thing to start, but once you’ve made the investment and committed to making it a part of your growth strategy, you’ll never run your business the same way again.
The study in question suggests that 70% of marketers will ramp up their mobile budgets in 2013.
“A lot of brands have spent far too much money on mobile applications,” Scott Forshay, a mobile and emerging technology strategist for emarketing company Acquity Group, tells Mashable.
The time for greater emphasis and financial backing on mobile marketing has finally come.
This year, mobile ad spending in the U.S. is expected to reach $2.6 billion. That includes spending on display, search and messaging-based formats. And another estimate shows mobile advertising on smartphones will be a $5.04 billion industry by 2015.
“Of that $2.6 billion spent, $2.5 [billion] of that was probably wasted,” Forshay admits. “Probably the biggest error brands have made as they venture into mobile is that they think mobile is the same thing they’re doing for the website, just down to a 4-inch form.”
“Mobile users are not tethered to a desktop. They need timely information to drive them into stores with positive purchase intent,” he says, adding that marketing on mobile devices “will need to be timely, personal and contextually relevant (people expect their phone to be customized to who they are), in order to work.”
Article Source: http://www.mobilemarketingwatch.com/mobile-marketing-budgets-to-balloon-in-2013-24180/
The “loyalty” aspect of our service is what has really fueled a lot of the interest we’ve been getting recently. There has been a huge spike in interest in SMS and other mobile marketing services since the beginning of 2012. And, for the past few years, the Groupon model has been relatively popular. The concept of social buying and heavy discounts was very compelling to small businesses that were looking for ways to drive business. However, we saw some backlash with this model.
The deep discounts and one-time buys are not ideal for the goals and needs of certain businesses. I’ve seen about 60-90% of business owners say they will never do another Groupon again. So if you look at the business market and see that most businesses will not use Groupon again, then how does Groupon have any kind of future?
We always knew that the No. 1 fail point of Groupon was that they had no client retention model. We knew they would eventually have to evolve into a loyalty company—and they did when they came out with Groupon Rewards.
Now, the company is distancing itself from small businesses. They realized their model failed to deliver loyalty, so they started offering a lot of other type of products. Now their focus is on “rewards”, which they obviously did out of demand in the marketplace. But, many businesses dislike Groupon because although they can offer great discounts to customers, they aren’t able to get their hands on the list of people who bought the Groupon. That list is important in building loyalty and personal, engaging interactions among customers.
At SMS Masterminds, we have taken the time and energy to build a very campaign-based and service-based program. We understand the concept of loyalty and how it relates to the needs and opportunities of small business marketing.
There are several elements of a loyalty program that absolutely must be included for the program to be successful. And guess what—Groupon has incorporated virtually none of them. Here are some of the must-have components to a successful loyalty program:
Personal Relationship Building
Whatever system you use for your loyalty program should be one that rides the trends of the loyalty marketing industry and the demands of consumers. Consumers are demanding relationships—they want to feel important and buy from people that they like. If a brand can create a personality and get people to like it, that brand will win over customers. It’s about making an effort to make the customer experience personal and engaging.
Engaging Ongoing Messaging
A loyalty program needs to have consistency in its touch points. We are in a very fast-paced industry today and people expect instant gratification. With our loyalty marketing program, consumers are constantly engaged—receiving text message updates and rewards for checking-in on the Loyalty Rewards Kiosk. With Groupon Rewards, there is no engagement. It’s a system that tallies up totals, and who knows when you will receive your reward.
Timely Push Technology
You want to be able to PUSH your message out there. In order to continue that personal relationship with consumers, you must be able to reach them and provide them with something of value. Push technology is so important in marketing—and that’s why mobile is so big right now—because being able to push out your message and almost INSTANTLY reach consumers is unbelievably powerful.
In-House Engagement Element
You need to have something in-house that people can engage with when they walk into your business. There needs to be something they can do, touch, see, feel—whether it’s a table tent or some other form of signage or a Loyalty Rewards Kiosk conveniently located at the point of purchase—so customers can see, in that moment, how many check-ins they have so far, how many rewards they’ve earned, etc.
Habit Forming Consumer Use
A loyalty system needs to teach your customer how to buy. A successful program can help them develop habits that they will continue to act on over time. Consumer buyer habits are one of the most critical elements of any analytics because understanding what your customers are doing and helping them further mold their buying habits will directly affect your bottom line.
Social Media Integration
It’s 2012. If you are still aboard the anti-social media “I don’t see how it will help my business” train, then you should probably get off at the next stop. You can no longer turn a blind eye. Social media is out there, it’s big, and you can’t deny the success that many businesses have using it to promote brand awareness. A system with elements of loyalty, brand building and consumer engagement should absolutely include social media to round off the entire experience.
If you’re in the marketing industry, you’re going to have people ask you about the differences between Groupon and other loyalty marketing programs. Be prepared to answer those kind of questions by being informed.
Anyone can buy a full-page advertisement in a newspaper, but it’s what the ad says and how it looks that makes the difference of whether it works or not. It comes down to service. When we see other companies providing a technology-only solution, it comes up short in terms of what expectations should be. Value is the key, which is why our system has been built the way it has and how it has remained sustainable among all the other variations that are out there.
The restaurant and food industry is embracing the mobile movement more than other business sectors, according to a new infographic.
DudaMobile, a service that makes websites mobile ready, found that restaurants and food services from pizzerias and bakeries to food trucks take 28% of the total percentage of small to medium-sized businesses that have a mobile-friendly site.
This category is far more advanced than other industries looking to reach out to smartphone users, including professional services such as locksmiths and attorneys (16%), health and wellness including spas and salons (10%), travel and tourism such as hotels (8%) and automobile/transportation (6%). Retailer was number six on the list (5%) for small to medium-sized businesses.
DudaMobile also noted that nearly 20% of visits to a mobile-optimized website result in an immediate call to the business.
The infographic also noted that 70% of smartphone owners use their device while shopping. In addition, about 51% of business travelers use mobile devices to find out information while on the go.
For a full look at which industries are embracing mobile, check out the infographic below.
Article Source: http://mashable.com/2012/06/14/mobile-adoption/
The skyrocketing number of smartphone users and amplified mobile marketing budgets tell us one thing: the scope of mobile is broadening more and more each day.
As we near 2012′s median, here are insights into the booming world of mobile:
- Mobile Web is predicted to reach 2 billion users by 2015.
- The largest age group of mobile Web users is ages 25-34, making up 25.6% of the user population.
- When looking at the entire population of mobile Web users, 51.3% are male and 48.7% female.
- An average mobile device user has their smartphone with them 23 hours per day.
- The most common mobile activity is text messaging (74.3%), with photos (60.3%) and email (40.8%) trailing close behind.
- 58% of all SMS opt-ins are done by the 25-34 age group.
- The average mobile marketing/advertising budget is between $75,000 and $100,000 per campaign.
- The mobile advertising market is expected to surpass $5 billion by 2015 (compared to the $1.24 billion in 2011).
- Mobile search makes up the largest investment of advertisers (49%), and following that are display advertising (33%), SMS/MMS marketing (12.2%) and mobile video (5.8%).
- 71% of smartphone users have used mobile search after seeing an ad.
- Nearly 1/3 of consumers say mobile is their go-to shopping method.
- 87% of consumers shop via websites on a laptop, 14% on a smartphone and 9% on a tablet.
- Men and women engage differently on mobile devices when it comes to shopping: women use smartphones to make their shopping experience more social, while men use it to find information about their potential purchases.
- Mobile coupons generate 10x the redemption rate as traditional coupons.
- 70% of smartphone users use their devices when shopping in-store, and 29% who do end up purchasing the item online–this is called the Showroom Effect.
- 53% of those mobile searchers have made a purchase after a smartphone search.
- 50% of smartphone owners have scanned QR codes, and 18% of them made a purchase after scanning.
- 48% of companies plan to invest in advertising with QR codes in 2012.
So, there you have the numbers and be you informed! Ignorance is no longer an excuse for marketers not tapping into mobile. It’s clear that advertisers certainly have a wide range of mobile options to choose from, with mobile Web, advertising, SMS, coupons and QR codes at their fingertips.
Hello generation mobile!
Check out the following sources to see where the numbers came from: