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Consumers use their mobile devices to comparison shop, get directions to a business, or make reservations at their favorite restaurant. But often the communication from brands stops there. 

Businesses of all kinds should be better engaging via mobile with their customers. After all, engaged customers are your most valuable asset: optimising engagement can help you outperform the competition.

Effective mobile campaigns allow you to speak to your consumers personally, targeted to the right time with a sense of urgency. Studies show that 42% of US consumers prefer to get offers delivered via text and 97% of mobile subscribers will read a text within 15 minutes.

It’s clear that mobile marketing works and can provide benefits to brands across a wide variety of industries. Let's look at a few solutions that can drive results for your business:

In-store and catalog engagement for retailers

In the retail industry, using mobile devices to earn points or track and redeem rewards is an excellent way to drive loyalty.

Reportedly 47% of all consumers wish more stores offered mobile apps to collect and redeem loyalty points and another 47% would choose to shop at a store that offered a mobile loyalty program over another store that didn't.

Sephora has invested heavily in mobile over the last year, most notably integrating its loyalty program, Beauty Insiders, onto mobile.

The brand makes it easy for consumers to track points, view rewards and redeem either in store or online. Due to this focus on increasing engagement, Sephora has since seen a 150% increase in mobile shopping over the last year.

A mobile scavenger hunt is another great way to get your consumer's attention and gamify the in-store shopping experience. You can do this by locating items or print pieces throughout the store that the consumer must find -- inviting them to scan a QR code or text a related keyword for a chance to win a discount or other promotional offer.

A catalog scavenger hunt can also be useful to incentivize your customers to engage with your catalog longer -– ultimately leading to increased sales.

To drive cover-to-cover reading of its catalog, Ikea recently promoted a mobile campaign on its catalog cover for a chance to win instant prizes and a shopping spree grand prize. 

Consumers were asked questions via SMS and answers could be found throughout the catalog. More than 200,000 customers participated, and the average time they spent with the catalog playing the game was 11.5 minutes.

Mobile engagement by restaurants

Restaurateurs have a great opportunity to use mobile as a way to boost engagement and sales as well. Customers who opt-in to a restaurant’s SMS program are expressing a desire to keep up with what's happening in your restaurant, so take advantage of this by sending alerts to keep your customers informed of new menu items and special events.

Providing coupons via the mobile web, apps or SMS can make offers more convenient for consumers and more likely to be redeemed quickly. Our data shows mobile offers are redeemed 8-10 times more than the same offer via email.

Creating time-sensitive offers can also drive quick consumer response. If it's a scorching summer day and you have the perfect frosty beverage, send a mid-afternoon text to let your database know where they can cool off. Know someone comes in for happy hour often?

Offer them a two-for-one dinner and get them to stay a bit longer.

Boston's, a sports bar and restaurant, built a mobile CRM program across their 51 U.S. locations. Once customers opted-in to the program, they were rewarded with a mobile coupon for a free pizza (along with deals and alerts for their specific location in the future).

More than 24% of consumers redeemed their coupons during the kick-off campaign followed by 10-15% average redemption following the launch of the campaign.

Live event activation

Activating your customers during live events, with live polling, text-to-win or texting pictures to screen, is another excellent way for marketers to personalize the brand experience and align your brand with an activity that your customers already enjoy.

Brands can accomplish this by engaging live audiences in the venue and encouraging them to participate in SMS campaigns. In addition to capturing their attention in the moment, effective SMS engagement at live events can help brands increase their mobile database.

Jim Beam has had great results using several mobile tactics during concerts and events with on-screen experiences like a virtual Tug of War, live polling, and giveaways.

For example, a MAXIM Mardi Gras event resulted in 58,000 mobile brand impressions and the brand saw 10,000 mobile opt-ins during the Kid Rock Born Free Tour.

Mobile engagement drives results

With the increasing use of smartphones as a primary entry point for consumers to engage their favorite brands, there’s no surprise that marketers with comprehensive mobile strategies are seeing significant results.

As the mobile landscape continues to mature, brands that make mobile a core part of their overall marketing strategies will give themselves.

Matthew Kates

Published 1 October, 2013 by Matthew Kates

Matt Kates is Vice President, Strategic Services at HelloWorld and is a contributor to Econsultancy.

19 more posts from this author

Comments (2)

Jonathan Bass

Jonathan Bass, Managing Director at Incentivated Ltd

Typically a complete mobile marketing strategy has room for an mcommerce/m-site, a functional app and a CRM messaging programme (SMS and push). The challenge is joining-up these disparate activities, and that has to fall to the marketing department, not ecommerce or IT. Marketing Directors now need to seize ownership of the entire organisation's communication through mobile, even if they don't build, host and maintain the tech. Though as we know from Econsultancy's Modern Marketing Manifesto (#MoMaMa) the marketing department needs to understand this tech ... inside out, or miss out.

about 3 years ago

pk vaish

pk vaish, MD at Livelink New Media

A mobile first approach is now necessary for any marketing strategy - and with the increasing numbers of customers choosing to browse the web on their smartphones as opposed to desktop, this approach will need to be adopted by all companies who wish to retain their market share and increase revenue in what is an increasingly mobile world.

about 3 years ago

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