The biggest mobile marketing mistake that I see businesses of all sizes make is failing to follow the most basic of marketing principles – know your customer and act accordingly.
Too many times we see SMBs and others either go too slow or run like the dickens to get a mobile website up and a mobile app produced before consideration is given to the behaviors and interest of the customer and prospects.
I thought of that recently when I was preparing for a webinar on mobile content. There are many, many best practices that that are pretty much universal -- things like ensuring that content viewed on wireless devices is relevant, headlines are descriptive, and the visuals are compelling.
But best practices are general, and say nothing about how an individual business can – or should - use mobile.
Here’s what I mean:
On venturebeat.com, I read
http://venturebeat.com/2014/08/16/no-your-website-doesnt-need-every-cool-new-feature-out-there/ about NerdWallet’s approach to mobile. NerdWallet is a free tool positioning itself as the best way to find credit cards, cd rates, savings, checking accounts, scholarships, healthcare and airline fares.
Much of those categories are big in terms of time spent on mobile. But NerdWallet dug deeper rather than just follow form.
“At NerdWallet, for instance, 33% of our traffic comes from tablets and phones, up from 20% just a year ago,” wrote Eric Ogren, NerdWallet’s chief technology officer. “Still, our website relies heavily on charts and tables, which don’t translate that well onto smaller screens. What’s more, if your website is anything like NerdWallet and requires people to plug in data to get the information they need, it’s more likely that they’ll want to do this on a desktop. Even though the industry is trending toward mobile apps, it simply isn’t a top priority for us right now. Don’t go mobile simply because everyone else is doing so.”
Very true. And, if you do go mobile, create a formal content strategy. More than 90 percent of companies do not have one, according to Gartner.
Beyond beginning with customer insights, here’s what to consider when building a content strategy:
· Mobile is more personal. Consumers have less patience in receiving irrelevant content. How many times does a vegetarian put up with receiving meatball sandwich offers, especially a regular customer expecting you to know better? Very few at most.
· Attention spans are shorter – be concise
· Think multi-screen. In its global Cross-Screen Engagement study http://advertising.microsoft.com/en-us/cl/1932/cross-screen-research-report, Microsoft Advertising found that 68 percent of consumers engage in "content grazing" - multi-tasking using several devices at once. "Marketers will only succeed in the multiscreen world if they create content that enables personal engagement across TVs, PCs, consoles, tablets, and mobile devices”.
To gain customer insights, you might ask these questions:
· How much of your traffic is coming via mobile?
· Is that expected to – or does it need to – change?
· Are visitors coming via smartphone, tablet or both?
· What type of content are they consuming now?
· How much time do they spend with you?
Finally, do not mandate that content be read on one particular device – it’s a consumer’s choice, not yours. And remember to make it easy for mobile users to share content – they can be your biggest and most influential advocates.
This post was brought to you by IBM for Midsize Business and opinions are my own. To read more on this topic, visit IBM's Midsize Insider. Dedicated to providing businesses with expertise, solutions and tools that are specific to small and midsized companies, the Midsize Business program provides businesses with the materials and knowledge they need to become engines of a smarter planet.