Marketing Articles

5 Essential Features of a Mobile Marketing Platform

by Suzie Blaszkiewicz
Published on 12 August 2016

Mobile marketing platform

Whether you're using responsive design or a full blown mobile app, SMS or a mobile wallet, mobile marketing should be a part of your marketing strategy in some way, shape or form.Why? The ubiquitousness of mobile devices means that people are spending 51 percent of their media consumption time looking at their phones and tablets, surpassing the 42 percent of people consuming media on desktop.

If those stats aren't enough to convince you, consider the revenue generated by mobile marketing efforts; 2015 saw $68.6 billion in mobile advertising revenue, and that number is projected to top $100 billion by the end of the year.

If you want to jump on the mobile marketing train, the first step is to adopt a mobile marketing platform that'll help you target your mobile-addicted consumers.

First thing's first though: what kind of marketing falls under the umbrella of mobile? Mobile marketing can include (but is not limited to) any of the following:

  • Mobile advertising
  • Mobile search
  • Mobile optimized websites
  • SMS
  • Mobile coupons
  • Native mobile apps
  • Location-based offers
  • QR codes
  • Mobile wallet (like Apple Pay or Android Pay)
  • Push notifications
  • NFC (near field communication)

The good news is that you don't necessarily need a team dedicated specifically to mobile marketing to get the ball rolling; you can utilize your existing marketing team to kickstart your mobile marketing initiatives.

The bad news is that because there's still a bias towards creating content for desktop and generally no dedicated team for mobile, efforts might be disjointed or come as an afterthought. The traditional route is to adapt already existing marketing content to fit mobile devices, but there's huge opportunity to make use of emerging technologies like beacons or NFC (near field communications).

The challenge is to get the right balance so that your marketing team devotes enough time to both digital and mobile marketing efforts, while still creating content that engages people on their mobile devices.

If you're looking for a mobile marketing platform or marketing automation software to help optimize your marketing for mobile, consider the following features so that you can balance your online marketing efforts while still getting the most out of mobile.

Multi-channel marketing

Multi-channel marketing is the ability to market the same message using different outlets. This can include anything from traditional sources like print, to digital sources like web, to social media sources like Facebook or Twitter. Many marketing automation suites offer multi-channel options for digital and social marketing; mobile is usually nestled under digital channels, but within the mobile sphere, you'll want multiple marketing options too.

Catapult overview

Source: Vibes

In-app messaging and push notifications, SMS, and email are three of the most common methods of mobile marketing, and while there are dedicated solutions for each, you'll likely want a variety of methods depending on your marketing message. Catapult, a platform dedicated to mobile marketing, is a great example of an all-in-one mobile marketing option that offers everything from text messaging and mobile wallet, to push notifications and mobile web.

Automation

Just as many marketing suites allow for automation, the same functionality is super important for mobile marketing. In places where dedicated mobile efforts aren't possible, automation is a good option. Many marketers adapt their messages from web to fit mobile, with some automation in place to be able to shift those messages from one platform to another seamlessly.

Popular marketing suite Marketo has a dedicated mobile marketing solution that offers various in-app marketing techniques, linking them with other digital channels in order to get an idea of all of the touchpoints that clients are accessing to be able to target them more effectively.

Responsive design

The importance of having responsive design cannot be stressed enough. Responsive design ensures that your website will look good (and function well), regardless of whether your customer is viewing it on a desktop, a tablet, or a phone. This not only ensures a seamless experience for users, but also gets you points with Google.

Marketing app Yodle specializes in creating websites that are optimized for both web and mobile, while adding in additional features like a Google Maps listing creator, a local search placement using SEO techniques to get users visibility on both desktop and mobile, and email marketing solutions.

Yodle screenshot

Speaking of visibility, responsive design is especially critical when it comes to email marketing, which, given the current state of mobile usage, can almost be considered a form of mobile marketing ( over 50 percent of emails are now opened on a mobile device). The good news is that most popular email marketing solutions, including Mailchimp, have (if not default to) mobile-friendly templates.

Analytics

One of the most important but often trickiest aspects of mobile marketing is being able to track your efforts back to mobile. Without that, you have no idea how well your mobile marketing campaigns are performing or how much budget to allocate to them.

Tune Marketing Console

Tune Marketing Console, developed specifically for mobile, aims to gather and aggregate all of this analytics data into one place, giving an in-depth overview of your most successful in-app marketing efforts. Features include attribution analytics, app store analytics, in-app marketing, and business intelligence to give a really robust overview of your ROI from mobile. It's also recently introduced a tool in public beta called Multiverse, which gives marketers data about return on ad spending from across the mobile web and in-app advertising.

Location-based functionality

Making use of the device itself, location-based functionality is a unique aspect of mobile marketing that can provide the right marketing to the right consumers at the right time with technology like bluetooth beacons and NFC.

Geo-fencing and location-based offers take advantage of a customer's location to send out content that's relevant to their location. Pulsate, for example, offers geo-fencing for certain locations, entire cities, or even as small as single rooms. You'll know when your customers are close so that you can send them deals or offers when they're more likely to act on them.

Pulsate screenshot

Source: Pulsate

Another interesting use of location data is a platform called Yext, which collects data across all of your locations so that you can optimize your search engine listings for things like business address, contact number, and opening hours so that consumers always have the right info about your business.

Investing in a mobile marketing platform

Optimizing web-based marketing content for a mobile device is a great way to dip your toes into the world of mobile marketing. Once you get into the swing of things, you'll start to realize that there are many ways that a mobile device can extend your marketing efforts beyond the basics so that you can take advantage of mobile devices themselves to provide you invaluable data (and huge returns) from a captive audience.

As the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to integrate its invisible branches into the real world, more and more mobile devices will be available and connected. If you don't want to miss the mobile marketing train, you'll have to move quickly before it leaves the integration station.

What type of mobile marketing strategy are you currently using? Share with us in the comments below!


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