Mobile and Small Business - Stats Cut Both Ways

There was something for the naysayers and for the optimists in an important survey of small and medium size business and their use of mobile.

Mobile and Small Business - Stats Cut Both Ways
On the positive side, SMBs understand the value of building a database of prospects, according to a new survey by well-respected Borrell Associates.

SMBs prefer paying for signups as opposed to paying for mobile advertising clicks or impressions (27% versus to 19% for clicks and 6% for banners), according to the polling of over 1,300 SMBs. But 52% are unsure, which isn’t a big surprise in what are still the early days of wireless.

But proving that those of us in mobile marketing still have convincing to do to drive more mobile adoption, 45% of small business plan to maintain their level of spending, while 27% of medium-sized businesses plan to increase their level of spending on mobile media in the next year, compared to 4% who expect a decrease in mobile spend.

SMBs say that they are not satisfied with the ROI on mobile advertising, but 49% that have bought mobile ads say that they would spend more if a higher ROI could be garnered.

My take?

Big brands say that they will accelerate their mobile spends at higher rates than what businesses told Borrell.

In each case, there is plenty of proof that mobile can work if done smartly.

As an example that was detailed in my Mobilized Marketing book, Fox Chevrolet in Baltimore combined mobile and radio during the recession when it had not sod a car in more than a month pre-Cash For Clunkers.

The program worked like this: Fox Chevrolet bought two weeks of airtime on Hearst’s 98 Rock radio station to run 10- and 15-second promotions encouraging listeners to text in to enter to win the chance to purchase a car for $98.

In total, nearly 500 listeners texted the keyword Fox to the station’s short code. Each was entered to win and given details on how to attend the drawing at Fox.

On a Saturday morning, nearly 300 showed up on the lot and two were given the opportunity to purchase a car for $98.

Although the foot traffic was nice, it doesn’t begin to measure the success of the campaign. With prospective buyers enticed by shiny cars and competitive deals, Fox turned around its fortunes by selling 17 new cars and 17 used cars at full price on that one day.

Another example is the local maid service in Salt Lake City that had to hire more help to serve the demand produced through a text to win sponsorship that cost only hundreds of dollars. 

But as much as we want businesses to get mobile, the offering of proof will take more time.


This post was written as part of the IBM for Midsize Business program, which provides midsize businesses with the tools, expertise and solutions they need to become engines of a smarter planet.

Mobile and Small Business - Stats Cut Both Ways



The Biggest Hurdle In SMS Marketing

Mobile Marketer asked me about hurdles in using text-messaging programs.

Here's what I told the publication:

“The biggest hurdle is often mental. Recently, Ford used a text call-to-action to produce a 15.4 percent lead convergence. I told this story to a digital influencer who called it a great example of a 'meat and potatoes' program.

“I'm a vegetarian but I'll serve my clients meat and potatoes all day long if we can realize such a lofty lead number.”

Further, I told Mobile Marketer that marketers should get past the "shiny object" mentality and concentrate on what has the best chance of success.

"Of course, another advantage to SMS marketing is that an interaction often leads to a remarketing opportunity through an opt-in. This drives loyalty and sales.

“Who cares if it was done with the simplest of mobile products?"

The full article is here

Video of Author Panel at Mobile Insider Summit

I was thrilled to be asked to be on an author’s panel at the top-tier Mobile Insider Summit presented by Mediapost. My co-panelists were Jed Alpert, CEO, Mobile Commons; Chuck Martin, Author, The Third Screen @chuckmartin; and Mike Proulx, Senior VP, Digital Strategy, Hill Holliday @mcproulx.

Incidentally, Chuck and Mike are good friends.

Here’s the video

<br />Video streaming by Ustream