Sophie Vu leads worldwide marketing for Vibes, a Marketo partner and mobile marketing company that helps brands increase revenue through engagement. With more than 18 years’ experience growing and leading innovative tech companies, Sophie has a strong pulse on the current and emerging market landscape.
It’s getting far too easy for consumers to ignore marketing messages that they’re not interested in. Even if they are interested, they often miss important communications simply because there is so much noise out there.
So, how can you combat the crowded marketplace and actually get the attention of your audience?
In this blog, I’ll cover how to use mobile marketing and email marketing to connect with customers in meaningful ways.
Mobile Marketing: Capturing Consumers’ Attention on the Go
Walk out of your house, and you’re bound to see someone engrossed in their phone. Whether they’re texting, playing a game, shopping, or browsing social media, consumers are spending five hours a day on their phones.
They’re more likely to immediately engage with an offer presented via mobile than any other channel simply because their phones have become an extension of themselves. A personal assistant. A means of connecting to the world, no matter where they are.
What this means for you, as a marketer, is the opportunity to create value where your audience is spending a significant amount of time.
Elements of Mobile Marketing
There are several ways you can reach your audience via mobile. We’ve seen that a combination of these different strategies can have phenomenal results.
An exciting aspect of mobile right now is the use of the mobile wallet. Consumers can not only pay for purchases both in-store and online with their digitally saved credit cards, but they can also opt-in to promotions and offers from their favorite brands.
Once a subscriber sees your offer, they can save it in their mobile wallet. If they don’t redeem the offer, you can send notifications to remind them to, or even increase the savings to entice them. And once an offer is saved, you can update it indefinitely, providing you more opportunities to stay in front of your customer.
The most fundamental mobile marketing campaign that has the highest delivery and reading rates are happening via text. You can send an offer via text with a link to redeem it or instructions to show the cashier the text to redeem in-store.
And you can take text message marketing one step beyond text-only content. Leveraging multimedia messaging, you can include videos and images to better engage subscribers.
Text messaging campaigns are also great to keep customers updated on the status of their orders, billing, alerts, and relationship-building campaigns.
Another benefit of SMS messaging is that for customers who don’t use a mobile wallet, you can send them the same offers. You can then link to a mobile-friendly website where they can access the same offer without needing to install a wallet app.
We’ve all been trained like Pavlov’s dog to respond instantly when we hear the ping of our phones. Those pings can turn into dollars if efficiently used. Push notifications can inform subscribers of new promotions or app features or remind them to redeem an offer.
Location-based push notifications are a fabulous way to connect with subscribers when they’re physically near your store, thus increasing the likelihood of them coming in to redeem an offer.
How Brands are Using It
So now you understand the theory of mobile marketing as a successful channel but are brands actually making it work for them as well as getting the ROI they want and achieving business outcomes?
Brands, big and small, are using mobile marketing to attract more customers, increase visits, grow average order sizes, gain repeat purchases, and boost mobile downloads. Here are a few brands that have successfully reached these goals:
- PetSmart engaged its customers for Black Friday and the holiday shopping season with a fun pet-themed game. Players chose their favorite pet (dog or cat), then uncovered one of three offers. The results? The game was played over 750,000 times, attracting a 7x subscriber growth rate.
- The Polo Factory Store wanted a way to maximize both in-store traffic and online sales, so they created a digital gift guide that saw 465,000 unique visitors. It acted as a data capture tool between marketing touch points and in-store purchases.
- RedBox took its Days of Deals annual giveaway to mobile, adding in special offers to players. Some even included mobile wallet. Over 25 days, the campaign saw nearly 4 million entries and 2.7 million promo codes redeemed.
- Providing valuable mobile experiences rather than only focusing on promotions is also an effective mobile marketing strategy. The Home Depot created a weekly interactive holiday calendar with educational videos, tips for gifts and instructions for DIY projects (and yes, special offers) to create a mixed-media animated approach to the holidays. The campaign saw a $3.6 revenue per click to the web and a 22% increase in mobile broadcasts to the overall experience, which drove significant ROI to the business.
These examples go to show that mobile marketing works and that there’s no one way to attract and engage mobile subscribers. Because mobile marketing is still a relatively new field, it’s exciting to see the creativity that comes with mobile campaigns.
Where Email Fits In
So, if you’re using mobile marketing, why do you also need email? The fact is: a multi-prong approach to reaching consumers will have a bigger and better impact. The more channels you can reach your audience with, the better brand recognition you will have.
The key to combining mobile and email marketing is to ensure that the offers are slightly different. Otherwise, what’s the value? The retailer who sends a 30% off promotion to both mobile and email at the same time is a turnoff, whereas the retailer who sends a 30% off promotion via email, and then a link to clearance items via mobile may see better engagement.
One Platform: Multichannel Customer Engagement
Having two distinctly different channels for reaching customers sounds like a lot of work. Surely you’d have to log into two separate platforms to manage them both.
Actually, that’s not so.
You can manage both email and mobile marketing campaigns from a single engagement platform. A mobile engagement platform, like Vibes, can integrate with your marketing stack—specifically your engagement platform, providing ease of use and smarter dialogue between all types of campaigns. You can create robust customer files that allow you to see response rates to both email and mobile.
And while it can be helpful to have an experienced marketing partner to get your campaigns up and running, it is entirely possible to manage them and update them yourself, with little to no technical expertise required.
As it becomes more challenging to reach consumers, taking a multifaceted approach with both mobile and email can help brands deliver the best customer experience and improve engagement across all channels.