Mobile has made a dramatic impact on how people shop. The arrival of the smartphone has introduced a new medium for commerce and altered the way people navigate stores. It is the later impact that provides a true opportunity for retailers, a recent survey by Deloitte showed that consumers using smartphones in stores purchase more when retailers supply their own app. So, you’re sold on the need for a mobile marketing campaign. The question is, what does a successful mobile campaign look like? What must be prioritized? Do you need a mobile website and a mobile app or can one suffice? How do you engage with smartphone-toting customers in your stores? The following steps are the answers to your questions. These are for beginners looking to launch a mobile campaign and for experts looking to refine. Here are the five steps to your most successful mobile campaign yet.
Companies must first and foremost launch a mobile website. Remember this mantra: mobile web for the masses and rich apps for the loyal. Your mobile website will be the landing page for the general public’s general inquiries. Your consumer will consistently visit your mobile site in order to find a store, contact a representative, and make the occasional quick purchase. Since smartphones are users’ first resource when in need of quality information on the go, your website must be available to fulfill this need.
You must also be sure to include search, browse, and buy functionality in your mobile site. 25% of consumers engage in online shopping only via mobile. And since 57% of consumers will not recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile site, your mobile optimized website must harness the technology in a way that is easy to navigate, visual, and informational. Consider adding extra tools such as social sharing (a must to anyone discussing SoLoMo), ratings and reviews, and zoom functionality.
When it comes to combatting showroom, a retailer’s most trusted weapon is a mobile application. 93% of customers who use apps in stores have bought something at a physical location the past week, compared to the 84% of non-users who have made a retail purchase. Since a mobile application is the millennial generation’s version of a loyalty card, consider it the face of the brand. While it should have major functionality, it must be true to the brand’s image.
Your mobile application is a resource, just like your mobile website, but it should also be fun. Your mobile app is the perfect place to expand loyalty programs, allow in-store functionality such as barcode/QR code scanning, and allow users to access a mobile wallet filled with personalized offers.
In comparison to the passive relationship your shopper will have with your mobile website, your mobile application should be interactive. Allow consumers to browse catalogues, ratings, and reviews; engage with the brand or other fans socially; and personalize their app experience.
Once you’ve successfully created your mobile application as a destination, you can begin to highlight tools that allow your app to be used in-store and for marketing purposes. A location-enabled app will allow customers to receive information that is personalized, time-sensitive, and relevant. And since push notifications can be sent to app-holding customers inside or outside of your stores, they are an ideal way to drive traffic and then engage with customers. To read more about successful location-based marketing campaigns, I’d recommend “How to Drive Customers to Your Stores and Increase Loyalty Through Location-Enabled Technology.”
Your in-store marketing campaign must include in-store signage that drives traffic to your mobile optimized website and personalized application, but it must also include interactive functions that increase the relationship between your consumer and your brand. For example, your mobile application is a perfect medium for barcode/QR code scanning functionality. This way, your customer can scan a QR code to watch a video demonstrating a product’s special features or scan a barcode to purchase a blouse if their size is out of stock.
In order for an in-store marketing campaign to be successful, retailers must educate their sales associates on how the application and mobile websites are used so that they are available for questions. If appropriate, retailers should also consider arming their sales associates with smartphones or tablets as an additive to the store experience, allowing them to demo products, provide additional information, or even check-out. For more information on effective in-store campaigns, consider reading “How to Own the Customer Experience In-Store By Engaging with Customers In Your Own Branded App.”
Today’s connected consumer moves seamlessly from one channel to the next and easily juggles multiple channels at once. To stay connected and relevant, your marketing strategy must be omni-channel. Make sure your brand messaging is consistent on all levels, allowing your customer to shift from your mobile app to an in-store experience seamlessly. Push your mobile website and mobile application in traditional media, online, mobile, and social media. Further, be sure your entire mobile process is streamlined, efficient, and without mistakes. Be sure to educate the consumer on the product, make sure QR codes are easy to scan and push to relevant content, triple check to ensure mobile coupons are readable and scan-able on mobile, and employees are knowledgeable with your products.
For the first time, we have an opportunity to gather analytics on how consumers shop in stores. When enabling location-based marketing, geofences are able to provide information such as how long someone stayed in your store, whether they visited your competitor’s store, and if they scanned codes or searched for products. These analytics give valuable information about how customers use your products and provide real-time analytics for the first time.
Once you unearth patterns and preferences, be sure to market to your consumers in a personalized fashion. If a customer prefers shopping in stores to on-line, send them a push notification informing them of a sale reserved for loyal shoppers. If a customer tends to read product ratings and reviews, considering sending a product review on an item similar to the ones they’ve been searching for. When developing marketing techniques, be personal and considerate in the messages you send. If done correctly, your relationships will thrive.
Kirsty Hughan is Digby‘s Marketing Manager and as such is excited by the opportunity mobile provides to finally allow for a 1:1 marketing strategy for brands. To stay in touch, you can find her on Digby’s Facebook, Twitter or the Digby Blog.