The presence of mobile technology in our world is undeniable, but the sheer scope, or reach, of those devices is difficult to grasp with out some sort of quantification. Try this number on for size: Gartner estimates that 1.2 billion smartphones and tablets were bought worldwide in 2013. Currently the online traffic, according to the larger search engines of Google and Bing, has shifted to be more mobile than desktop. This shift occurred over the last couple years and marks a time of major change. The juggernaut that is mobile is necessitating changes in the way we must market our products. The mobile sector cannot be ignored, but what new methods are actually leveraging its possibilities?
Some companies are using responsive design and mobile apps to encourage browsing on the go. Both methods bring ease to mobile browsing-responsive web design is a design approach created to provide an optimal viewing experience automatically, no matter what size screen or device is used to view a website; meanwhile, apps are often designed as the mobile counterpart to a full-size website.
Others are using a text messaging approach to marketing. According to an article from Forbes, “95 out of 100 of your customers who have opted into your text messaging program OPEN and READ your mobile messages within 3 minutes.” That’s a statistic that’s hard to argue with, however, keep in mind that text message marketing is highly regulated and consumers must first opt in to receive your messages. Think about it though, how often do you get a text that you don’t at least look at and read? Never.
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Yet another option is geo-fencing, which takes advantage of the prominence of GPS in mobile devices fairly uniquely. Geo-fencing is a feature built into software that uses GPS or RFID (radio frequency identification) to define boundaries. A geo-fence is essentially a virtual barrier. For marketing purposes companies can use geo-fences to trigger a text message or e-mail containing information or a special incentive. Think of this, you drive by a sporting goods store and their program understands you are a 42 year old male with no higher education, sending you a text for camping supplies during the first month of Spring. That is highly valuable targeting.
Mobile has made its mark and only continues to grow. Marketers and business owners need to cater to this traffic as much as humanly possible or risk letting a good portion of business slip away to competitors.