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Mobile Marketing? Yes, Please!

This week I bought my daughter a pair of darling sparkly silver sandals and a not-so-needed but adorable nonetheless sparkly silver purse for myself at Payless Shoe Source. BOGO of course. And 20 percent off to “boot.” Sorry, I like puns.

The other day, I got a gratis round of calamari from Carrabba’s Italian Grill, not too long ago rented a free movie from Redbox, and I plan on taking advantage of a $5.99 meal deal from Jersey Mike’s Subs soon.

Where are these offers coming from you ask? Are you some sort of VIP? Do you have an inside scoop that nobody else knows about? Are you in some sort of consumer mafia?

Something like that …

Savvy businesses like Payless, Carrabba’s, Jersey Mike’s and Redbox know that somebody like me is on the run, doesn’t have time to search for specials and isn’t organized enough to keep track of coupons. So instead they reach me on a device that rarely leaves my hand – my smart phone.

Smart ideed.

I vaguely remember these companies asking for my cell phone number either on their facebook page, a Web site or in store and I willingly gave out my private and personal information because I love bargains! Not to mention, these are businesses I like. This is customization at its best.

To rack up the savings, all I usually have to do is provide a special code or even show my phone and I’m in freebie heaven. 

I recently attended a Florida Public Relations Association Capital Chapter workshop called “Making the Case for Mobile Marketing.” The speaker, Craig Kronenberger with Edelman Digital, shared his mobile marketing expertise including three powerful pieces of information:

• 86 percent of Americans have a phone with Web connectivity

• Smartphone sales will surpass personal computer sales in 2011

• SMS text marketing has a much higher click through rate than e-mail marketing

This information shows that cross marketing works, and while in its somewhat early stages, will have a lasting impression on consumers as long as businesses realize that there are lines not to cross.

Cell phones are highly personal to their owners. They are a lifeline to work, business and play and we don’t want to be bombarded with ads unless there is a value.

The well-timed text containing a lunch deal a few days before payday could really entice me to visit a restaurant when I’m scraping together change in the bottom of my purse.

But, when I feel my phone buzzing expecting a text from a friend and it’s an advertisement, it will turn me off in a hurry.

I’ve received some extremely annoying spam texts, but luckily all it takes is a return text reply with “stop” and the problem is usually solved.

Spam has been around since the beginning of paper junk mail, but hopefully this will go by the wayside as mobile marketing and advertising becomes more advanced.

This marketing is just the start of how businesses can tap into their customers hearts and minds.

As I mentioned before – I was in the market for a pair of shoes for my daughter, but since I received a text discount code, I figured I’d pick up a purse for myself.

And that is exactly what Payless was hoping for.

><(("> Mandy Stark

Mandy is a ><(("> Friend of Catch Your Limit, a marketing firm with offices in Tallahassee, Florida and Richmond, Virginia. To contact Mandy email her at misslou20@aol.com or to learn more about Catch Your Limit, visit www.catchyourlimit.com.


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