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3 Tips to Fix Your #Failed Mobile Marketing

According to a 2013 Pew Internet study, 56% of Americans own a smart phone and 35% own a tablet.  Research from Canalys earlier this year predicted that tablet sales would increase by 59% this year.  In fact in Q3 of 2013, over a quarter of a billion units shipped worldwide.  So getting your mobile strategy right has never been more important for sales.  The C-suite no longer accepts applying outdated tactics that net poor results. (Please Click to Tweet So, here are 3 easy tips to fix your mobile marketing and sales now:

Image courtesy of businesstocommunity.com

Image courtesy of businesstocommunity.com

 1.  Understand that Most Mobile Device Use is Not Really Mobile

That’s right, the biggest mistake that marketers are making is NOT understanding how people are using their devices.  A joint study released by AOL and BBDO revealed that 68% consumer mobile phone use occurred at home.  Yes, they are using their devices at home!

Marketers need to have a two-pronged approach to reach the ‘at home market’ and the ‘on-the-go market.’  They have different needs.   There is an added level of complexity when understanding the use of tablets versus smart phones.  Marketers who succeed in mobile will be those who establish different strategies and tactics for each.

2.  Mobile Phone Use Does Not Equal Tablet Use

According to Pew, the demographics for those using tablets most include:

  • Those living in households earning at least $75,000 per year (56%), compared with lower income brackets
  • Adults ages 35-44 (49%), compared with younger and older adults
  • College graduates (49%), compared with adults with lower levels of education

In order to effectively reach tablet and smart phone users requires different approaches, particularly when it comes to advertising.  It is not a one size fits all approach.

3.  Advertising on Mobile?  Know Thy Device!

If you are still using the old “push” model of broadcasting messages in your  advertising, you are likely failing.

Marketers need to focus on micro-targeted “pull” campaigns that effectively result in the customer accepting messages. In addition to pull, Marketers need to forget banner ads.  While somewhat annoying to computer users, they are even less welcome on mobile.  They just aren’t scalable to mobile and therefore completely ineffective.

Finally it is important to know that those succeeding in the mobile market and netting sales have built relationships with customers.  Through these relationships, they have learned customer  preferences, including real-time location information.  They offer deals that result in real sales.  Starbucks for example leveraged mobile by offering a $5 credit to those who joined My Starbucks Rewards program.  This resulted in more than 500,000 downloads of the mobile app in its two-week trial period.

Take-Away Lessons:  

  1. Don’t push information.  Pull Information through offering something up to your customer or prospect.  What are the chances that someone who redeemed that $5 spent more than the credit allotted to him or her?  Probably pretty good.
  2. Understand how customers are using different devices and use appropriate tactics.
  3. Don’t annoy prospects and customers with annoying banner ads on mobile.  Be creative and delight your customers with real offerings to PULL them into your store or location.

If people thought that social media changed everything, mobile is like living inside a snow globe that someone continually shakes.  What changes are you making to your mobile strategy to accommodate for this different world?

BOOK REVIEW: Danny Brown & Sam Fiorella’s Influence Marketing

I love that I get the chance to meet really smart, interesting and inspiring people and in the process read great books and do book reviews. Danny Brown is one of those people. Sam, hopefully we get to connect soon too! As I get ready to do my PhD on Digital Influence, I was pumped to read Danny’s and Sam’s book: Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage, and Measure Brand Influencers in Social Media Marketing. After all it is a bout Influence!

Both Danny and Sam are well known for their marketing prowess and have really developed the conversation around influence. When done well, we don’t even realize that tactics of influence are being executed on us. As expected, this is a well written book chalk full of information.

From the Book’s synopsis:

Influence Book

“Today, you face a brutally tough, maddeningly elusive new competitor: the “wisdom of crowds.” Social media gives consumers 24×7 access to the attitudes and recommendations of their most engaged peers. These are the views that shape buying decisions. These are the views you must shape and use.Influence Marketing won’t just help you identify and enlist key influencers: it will help you manage the influence paths that lead consumers to buy. By sharing empirical evidence of hard-won lessons from pioneering influence marketers, Danny Brown and Sam Fiorella provide a blueprint that moves influence marketing beyond simple brand awareness and into sales acquisition and customer life time value measurement. They integrate new tools and techniques into a complete methodology for generating more and better leads—and converting them faster, at higher margins. 

• Put the customer—not the influencer—at the center, and plan influence marketing accordingly
• Recognize where each prospect stands in the purchase life cycle right now
• Clarify how your consumers move from brand preference to purchase
• Identify key micro-influencers who impact decisions at every stage
• Gain indispensable insights into the context of online relationships
• Recognize situational factors that derail social media brand recommendations
• Understand social influence scoring models and overcome their limitations
• Re-engineer and predict influence paths to generate measurable action
• Master the “4 Ms” of influence marketing: make, manage, monitor, measure
• Transform influence marketing from a “nice-to-have” exercise into a powerful strategy

Additional online resources can be found at www.influencemarketingbook.com”

Now, My Review:

This is one of the most comprehensive books on Influence Marketing that I have come across. From defining what Influencers are to understanding the emotion and logic that drives Influence to role of social media to exploring the shift of power from the brand to consumer and more, Danny and Sam have this exciting topic covered. They even go one step further and offer case studies to reinforce and support their topics.

What stood out for me most? Well, it was really the discussions around Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and Net Promoter Scores (NPS). This section of the book, like the entire book, was well thought out and got me thinking a lot about how to better measure Influence and the need to incorporate different measures than what have been discussed. This will be an area that I explore much deeper thanks to the authors.

Finally, another part of the book that I particularly liked and will draw upon to support initiatives is the definition of Influencers. As Influencer Marketing becomes more and more the topic du jour, helping people understand who is an Influencer and who is an Advocate, for example will really make a difference in developing ones strategy and tactics to use in an integrated marketing plan, that includes Influence Marketing.

So, you are looking to get an A-Z understanding of Influencer Marketing, I would get this book.

People Ask Me: How Do I Know What to Tweet?
More and more people are asking me questions about how to do “something” with respect to social media.  While social media is not the new kid on the block anymore, people are still struggling to understand all the different channels and when to use which one. So, based on which question I get asked in a given week, I will answer it here, in my blog.
So, what do you tweet?
This is a great question and I am glad that people are asking it.  It means that they really want to embrace Twitter and all the good things that come with it.  That is fantastic.
Let’s start with some easy things.  What are your hobbies?  What are your favourite news topics?  What things get your mojo grooving?
For example, if you are interested in craft beer, it might be a great starting point to share some of your knowledge and insight.  You may also seek out others who have the same interest and pose questions so that you can learn more.  You can even create lists that contain all the people and/or brands related to craft beer.
 Image
Image compliments of Picaroons Traditional Ales and DE MacLean Original carvings
Perhaps you are interested in silent films and want to learn more. You can start by searching out people of interest and following them.  Learn what they are talking about.  I think that you will learn fairly quickly that the things you wish to Tweet about are great conversations.  You just need to build your confidence and learn the environment of Twitter.  It is no different than going to a gathering with new people.  You always want to get the lay of the land and get to know people so that you feel more comfortable.  That my friends is human nature.
Start slowly, listen to others and share interesting and cool things.  One word of caution however, keep in mind that people are people.  Think about your interactions with people that you see each day.  How do you react to the person who is always in a good mood and wishing to help.  How do you react to the person who is always negative and complains about everything?  The same feelings and rules apply on social networks.  People are naturally drawn to people who are friendly and positive.
So, there are just a couple of easy ways to determine what you can tweet about.  Start slowly and take it from there.  Before you know it, you will be an old pro and helping others figure out what they should Tweet.
There are other ideas as well and I encourage you to share them.

Communicating in the age of mistrust

Perhaps the fact that organizations like Edleman’s looks at and measures trust is only a small indication of a bigger issue – people no longer trust.

In the age of social media there are many ways for people to unite over a cause and to share information – right or wrong.  Chances are however, that if you or I tell a friend something that we have learned, they will believe you or me before they will believe the corporate world, politicians or big industry in general.

In listening to the many commentaries today on the anniversary of 9/11 it is clear that people have many theories as to what happened that day and afterwards.  Knowing who to believe however comes down to who we trust.  In my opinion, social media has played a big role in our evolution of disbelief.  For those of who communicate or execute marketing strategies for a living, this is a tremendous challenge.  We have to build trust with our stakeholders, communities and customers.

Building trust however is difficult when you learn about companies that hire people to spread positive word of mouth messages on social networking sites.  The term wombagging has evolved out of this very practice.  According to Basil Phillips although there are a number of wombagging methods, most of them involve some degree of dishonesty.

As someone who has been in the communications and marketing industry for nearly 20 years, the challenge to build and maintain trust is more of a challenge than ever.  Having an authentic voice without spin may be the goal, but even when this is executed to perfection, there will be those that refuse to trust and refuse to believe.  What impact will they have on the rest of your audience?

Trust…the continuing saga

Why is it that we cannot trust?  What has happened in our culture and/or society that encourages us to trust only after we have tested and tested our relationships?

Clearly there has been something that has transpired that has caused a dramatic shift for people.  We see this with the rise and evolution with Social Media.  People clearly have found a voice and a way to speak up and out.

While thinking about this very post, I received an email of an upcoming audio conference.  Guess what the topic was?  Smart Trust: The Ultimate Skill that Separates Managers from Leaders.

So, not only are we researching and benchmarking trust with employees, employers and consumers, there are now designated learning opportunities to engage in trust, or in this case Smart Trust.  (Isn’t it interesting how everything these days has to be “smart”?  Smart meters, smart technology, smart cities….)

I would encourage people to think about trust and what it means to them.  What can you do as an individual to inspire trust and demonstrate trust.  Remember you have to give to receive.

My next posting will be one in a series on thinking about being a social organization versus just looking at Social Media in isolation.

What kind of Social Organization do you want to be?

So, we have already established that companies need to be involved in Social Media.  It is better to be a part of the conversation rather than just having everyone else talking about you.  That being said though, what kind of organization are you now?  What kind of organization do you want to become?

I suppose that companies could be happy with just being engaged with Social Media, but I would propose that we take it one step further.  Why not take the effort all the way and become a social organization.  Make all your business planning and efforts around how your entire organization can morph into a truly social organization.  To be a social organization you take the concept of sustainability and take it to the next level.  It is more than just being a company that talks about sustainability.  For example, ask yourself questions like:  what do we want to be known for?  Once you answer that, then you have the start of a plan. Keeping asking yourself these questions as you plan and execute that plan.

Traditional Marketing and Communications

To fully appreciate the power of Social Media, we first need to review where we have been and where we are now.

Traditional marketing and communications have been rooted in some very simple principles – message generation, control and what I like to call “telling.”

Let’s look at each piece.  Whether you are creating a marketing campaign for the public or an internal communication for employees, you always start with the question:  what are we trying to achieve?  Is it increased revenues?  Increased awareness?  Increased sales?  Or, is it to influence certain behaviours?  Once we know what we are trying to achieve, and know what message will help us achieve our objective, we then decide what tool(s) we are going to use to reach our audience(s).

If you are launching a campaign, you will be very specific in knowing what medium you are using to reach and “tell” your audience what you need them to know in order to influence their behaviour.

If you want to share organizational changes or an announcement of some important initiative with employees, you will determine what is the best way to share that information and when.

Regardless of the audience, your marketing and/or communications department will want to have a very tight reign on the development, execution and even measurement of the effectiveness of said activity.  In other words, they want to control the message and hopefully control the resulting behaviour.

So, regardless of whether or not it is the campaign or the employee communication, as marketers/communicators  we are “telling” people what they should do, think or believe.

To make a long story short, traditional marketing and communications is ALL about having control and “telling” people something.  There has not been any real true two-way dialogue.

Let’s not kid ourselves here please.  We all know that Best Practices cite that marketing and communications is all about two-way dialogue, but in all honesty how was this done before?  How could it be done?  If you see an ad, how do you generate a dialogue that involves the company and other people?  Sure, you could buy their product and maybe tell a friend.  Or, you could send them a letter, but how does that really generate two-way dialogue?  If you get a memo from the president of your company, how do you get more information?  Can you ask someone in the company in another location?  I suppose, but not easily.

Enter Social Media….I would dare say that this is the first time in history that real dialogue can occur and is occurring.

In my next posting I will speak more about this two-way dialogue and how it can impact you.