No question about it. We have become a mobile society. We are active, busy, and we want our information fast. The average attention span of a reader is less than 3 seconds. That is all you have to catch their attention. Blogs, such as this are different because you came here searching for a specific topic and you want more information. But in marketing and advertising, people are in the scan mode. "Catch my attention and I'm only giving you a second or two to do it in". So how does a SMB accomplish this with little or no budget?
First you need to understand mobility marketing. In a nutshell we are talking about reaching your customer through their smartphone. We could the tablet as well but for sake of discussion lets focus on the smartphone. Smartphones are the offce for today's executives and our population in general. They get their news, email, videos, texts, web, and we have have apps (applications) to cover specific items of interest. Most will work off wi-fi and wi-fi is pretty much available everywhere today. Wi-fi gives the user a smoother and faster experience in data load. Ok great so now we know why we need to market to these mobile users, how do I do it without investing a huge amount of money?
Without spending a lot of time on each topic, I will list some general easy inexpensive methods and you can explore what will work best for you. Many of these topics you can find on the web if you want more information or if you have the budget your local marketing firm can help. I will be happy to provide more inormation if you email me.
Make sure your website is mobile compatible. If your web site has not received attention in the past few years, chances are it is not formatting to smart phones. Make sure it does. check with your server host provider. Nothing worse than having your web site being checked on by a potential customer and they have to tap or scroll through a maze to get their information. You will lose them in a hurry.
Use QR codes. These can be made free on the web. What are they? Quick Response codes are scanned by smartphone users. You can get QRs to your clients or customers by your email, web Advertisng, postcards, or send it via text. When they scan it via their smartphone camera, the code takes them to whatever you want it to. Your web site, Youtube, your email address, whatever. Just make the link worthwhile. A special offer, discount, a promotional video. Pretty coool right? I place them on my business cards.
Email. Emails are the least expensive way to reach your customers but market smart with them. use newsletter templates or send a offer. Make the email attractive to read. Remember that 3 second rule? Have a catchy headline, like "Free Offer" "Limited time" ect. Put that QR code there; Scan this for free mechandise or something similar.
SMS. I have mixed feelings about texts in marketing. Personally I find them annoying but others say they work. I consider sms texts from businesses like spam in email. Either you love it or hate it. Before you say, that is time consuming, There are software programs that will "auto" send SMS texts to reach a mass target. Keep in mind you are burning up their data so make your texts catchy. (Most people today have an unlimited text plan)
Google Ad words-Mobile. Google Ad words are a good way to get your message out and just pay per click. You can target specific markets or verticals. Again, your ad hits certain web sites you want to reach. Go to Google's web site for more information.
Antalytics-SEO. Overhaul your web site and use Google antalytics to utilize "key words" and beef up your search engine optimization. This in turn will allow those with web on their smart phones to find you and your products or services easier giving you more "hits".
E-Commerce. Market your business on the web. If you have products or services to offer, put it on the web. and allow credit card transactions if possible. Today's web sites are very secure to conduct business on line. Yes, there will always be some risk of hackers, but choose a good web hosting service. If you market on the web, that customer sitting at a airport between flights or sitting on the beach in Florida relaxing may be just thinking about something you have to offer.
In conclusion, the above tips are the most popular but not all inclusive. Develop a campagin, keep it all in theme, and design it so you can track your ROI. Mobile marketing is not rocket science but you have to understand that the smartphone user is a "smart user" of his "smartphone". Good luck!
In other blogs, I covered why you need a Facebook site. Here, I will give you a basic overview on how to get your business Facebook fan page up and running. There are videos on YouTube on how to do this so I am not going to spend a whole lot of time on the set-up process. If you do not have the basic tools to make a fan page, then don't. It will look like you know what. If you do not understand the basics like pixels, how to make a jpeg, or use html, then again, don't attempt. Get a friend, an associate, or your kid who may know how to go about the process. I am not condeming you for trying but making a decent landing page requires some software like Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator to get the canvas size right and clean artwork. If you do not have that software or knowledge of using it, well my friend take time to learn or pass the project on to somebody who can do you a decent job.
Here is some other news that some of those YouTube videos do not cover because they are outdated. Due to some recent changes by Facebook (Boy, how they love to make changes) your canvas size must be 520 pixels wide. It can be any length. Suggest 900 pixels long. This is due to advertising on the right pane on Facebook. Anything wider than that will be "lost" by the viewer. (Also, newer flat screen computer monitors project different viewing sizes depending on their width I have discovered) The second item by Facebook is their sercurity. Without losing you here, there is http:// and then there is https:// the "s" stands for secure. Landing pages are hosted by various 3rd party servers. The people who make those applicatons (apps) use servers to host your landing pages. If they do not use a secure server, (the https://) your landing page will show up as a big fat "X" and you will get an annoying message that asks you "you are going to an unsecure website, do you want to proceed?" By this time you lost your prospect or possible fan so forget it. I know I would bail. So which app should you use to host your new landing page(s)?
I did a lot of research and trial and error. Most of these 3rd party apps that host landing page fail to tell you that they are NOT https:// One I found does and it is free. As of this writing, it is the only one I found that runs smooth and is https:// compliant. It also allows you to make both a fan and non fan page and to top it off , allows loading of a jpeg image or html/ccs. I love this app! It is called Woobox. Get it here. http://woobox.com/customtab. The app is https:// even though you see only http:// on the link. Trust me, it is and they explain that on their web site. You can add tabs too or upgrade other features for a fee but you really only need the free version.
To do all this I assume you all ready have a business fan page. If not, make one. Create a Facebook account, if you have a personal one up now simply go from your home page to "Create Page", go to the business portion and select your catagory. (You can watch the YouTube videos for this part if your lost) You will need to upload a picture or image and your info to finalize it. You will become the administrator of it and if you have a Facebook account, a link to manage it will be on your home Facebook page. Check for your "Like" button. Do not click it or if you did, unlike yourself so you can see your newly created fan pages later to check for appearances, otherwise you won't see them. Again, YouTube videos are out there on this specific subject area. Once the site is up AND you made your landing page template jpeg or html/ccs, got to the woobox site and download the app. It self installs and it if VERY easy to follow to load your landing page(s) I suggest you make both. One for non fans and a fan page. make them want to be a fan. Make the non fan page exciting and make the fan page rewarding for clicking on it. Something like free or a discount. Do not import your friends to your business site. That is a no-no. You don't want personal stuff on a business fan page. I will cover suggested topics for your fan page in a later blog. DO set your privacy and viewing settings however. Thats it. Email me if you have questions from the last tab on my site here. Good luck!