English: Survey on a mobile phone

English: Survey on a mobile phone (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you have a website, it is now a great idea to make it as “mobile friendly” as is possible. By mobile friendly, we mean to make it as accessible as possible to those viewing it on a mobile device, like an iPhone, a BlackBerry or other smart phone or mobile device that can connect to the internet.

Most websites today are not mobile friendly and it’s likely you may be losing business as a direct result. To test yours, simply pull your website up on your “smartphone” and see how it displays and how easy it is to navigate.

Don’t be discouraged if your website doesn’t look “perfect” when viewed on your phone… most don’t. However, if your site content is so jumbled it becomes unreadable or if your navigation is really hard to use, you may be missing out on business.

QR Codes & Mobile Phones

If you’ve ever seen an episode of “American Idol” or “Dancing With The Stars” you’ve likely heard them say something like… “text ‘Chad’ to 12345” to place your vote for Chad.

The “12345” they are referring to is the Common Short Code (CSC for short).. Basically, you can think of it as a phone number, only shorter. CSC’s are leased to businesses on a monthly basis (with a minimum three month term) and generally cost between $500-$1,000 per month depending on whether or not you require a “vanity” number that spells out a word.

In order for your customer to get a mobile coupon from you, you need to obtain a CSC .

Alternately you can add email marketing into the mix and the building of an email list is very powerful. QR codes look like a square box with a pattern on it. You often see them on shopping dockets now.

LONDON, ENGLAND - MAY 21:  The 'QR Code Garden...

LONDON, ENGLAND – MAY 21: The ‘QR Code Garden’ at the Royal Horticultural Society’s Chelsea Flower Show on May 21, 2012 in London, England. (Getty Images via @daylife)

Their patterns make them an interesting thing to use in many different ways such as this one in a garden  setting. They have been used on buildings in Japan, on T shirts, and even on cupcakes. See more examples of QR code marketing .

QR codes have other uses but they are web based codes and often the best use of them is to quickly send people using a mobile phone to a mobile web page.

Here’s an example of how using a QR code & mobile phone can work.  The message next to the code (on an ad or card or flyer) could tell them to go to your website to sign up for your email list. This will give them more frequent (and better) discount offers from your business. You could also be promoting a funny video or audio or picture that is on the page, whatever works to get them to visit it.

·    Discount coupons/code (as previously mentioned)
·    News about an upcoming sale (details as to the dates/times and discounts to be offered)
·    Store hour changes (or anything else that may be time-sensitive)
·    A live link to a special web page where you are build your email list
·    Any other valuable content you want them to see!

Those that do signup will continue to receive whatever email content you send out and your prospects will have “opted in” to receive emails from you, you won’t risk damaging your reputation or worrying about potential spam complaints.

Some of the Latest Statistics on Mobile Marketing

Five Mobile Systems

Five Mobile Systems (Photo credit: carnero.cc)

Even if you already knew that  mobile marketing was on the rise, I bet the latest statistics will surprise you… they surprised me! Here are some of the latest stats:

The “average” person is said to look at their mobile phone 37 times a day. (I think it’s more than that)

The Mobile population is now 5x bigger than the Internet population (meaning you have a chance to get in front of a much larger audience)

The “open rate” on text messages (aka SMS) is 5x higher than the open rate on emails. (while we are still big proponents of email marketing, it is easier to get your marketing messages seen when they are sent as text messages)

English: Linking to http://m.wikipedia.org

Linking to http://m.wikipedia.org (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Google spent $750 million to acquire Admob, one of the largest advertising networks that specializes in delivering ads to mobile devices. (Apple also bid to acquire Admob and was outbid by Google. Shortly thereafter, they created their own mobile advertising platform, iAd)

Apple now call themselves a Mobile company, not a Computer company anymore.

Millions of websites have gone “Mobile Friendly” in their design. (Mobile Facebook users has reached (and surpassed) 150 million)

Are you seeing the mobile trend?

Companies, both big and small, are investing their time and efforts into expanding their “mobile device” marketing and the more this trend grows, the more opportunity you have to get in front of your targeted audience.

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