Why wait for prospects searching on their mobile devices to find your business? Sure, millions of people use their mobile devices to find products and services every day, but by using outbound mobile marketing you can actively reach out to these potential customers and bring them to your site.
Try these tactics to help increase calls, site visits and walk-in traffic:
1. Highlight location information
Mobile users are often searching online for a nearby store, restaurant or other kind of business, so make sure your website features mobile-friendly maps and directions. Don’t limit your reach just to the people who are looking for you. Instead, encourage customers to “check in” on any location-based service they use—such as Foursquare or Facebook Places—so their friends can see where they are. Make it fun and rewarding for customers to visit your business by signing up for these services yourself. This allows you to offer special discounts or prizes—perhaps a free dessert or parking—when customers check in at or near your location.
2. Consider creating a mobile application
Mobile apps can be a powerful marketing tool since they can take advantage of a smartphone’s suite of built-in features. That’s likely why one-third of small- and medium-sized businesses in a recent AT&T survey planned to increase their use of mobile apps as a marketing tactic in 2011.* App possibilities are nearly endless: For example, a wine shop could create an app that includes tasting notes for different wines and lets users record the ones they’ve tried. A bookstore could create a “who’s the author” trivia game to encourage browsing through the store.
3. Reach out through text and multimedia messages
Most of your customers and prospects can receive text or multimedia messages on their phones. Create a text messaging list and invite people to join in. Use a short phone number (or “common short code”) and an opt-in keyword and then send periodic messages such as lunch specials right before lunchtime, notifications of subscriber-only sales, announcements of new inventory or reminders of upcoming appointments. Limit your messages to two or three a month so you don’t overwhelm your subscribers. In AT&T’s survey, 34 percent of small- and medium-sized businesses planned to increase their use of text message marketing this year.*
4. Consider mobile advertising
Take advantage of mobile advertising by placing ads on mobile versions of newspapers, blogs and other external mobile sites. Or create a mobile search campaign. If you do, keep in mind that mobile users’ queries tend to be short, task-driven and location-specific—so choose your keywords accordingly. Take advantage of geotargeting (targeting by city, metro area, radius from your business) to help reach nearby mobile users. After all, they’re the ones who will most likely be searching for you.
Before you get started in mobile marketing, think about creating a mobile website or optimizing your existing site for mobile visitors so they can easily get acquainted with your business while they’re on the go. With AT&T’s mobile website hosting service you can convert your full site to a mobile site that’s compatible with all major smartphones and there are additional tools that allow you to keep track of your mobile website traffic and visitors.
*The AT&T SMB eCommerce Survey was conducted online among a representative sample of 310 principals of companies with 1 to 100 employees in the United States by Bredin Business Information Inc.