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Getting it Right the First Time to Ensure Mobile Marketing Success

We recently read an interesting article by Chuck Martin @ MediaPost titled “Mobile Shoppers & Privacy vs. Relevant Offers” that we think highlights some of the challenges marketers face in ensuring they’re relevant (yet respectful) in communicating with mobile consumers.   The article references a recent IDC study on mobile shopping that reports smartphone users’ opinions are split nearly equally (53% vs. 47%) between whether it’s more important to respect their privacy or get relevant offers from retailers. According to Greg Girard, program director retail Insights at IDC, “A 53/47 split overall is a dead heat. That leaves retailers with a one in two chance of missing an opportunity to be relevant and the same odds of offending a shopper. Success is all about context, and with each consumer setting his or her own, retailers need better individualized insight to improve their odds of success.”

The odds of getting it right pose a real challenge for brands. If wrong, it could be a real turn off for consumers, who in many cases, will opt-out right away if the offers are perceived as either intrusive or not relevant.  Determining what is relevant and when it is relevant is the real question. While not an easy question to answer, we believe there are some best practices that will help shape marketers’ strategies for delivering relevancy at the right time.

We all know that consumers believe their smartphone is a highly personal communications tool, much as email was when it was first evolving. Email marketing has become ubiquitous and marketers have filled consumers’ inboxes with offers that lack relevancy so much so that many consumers don’t even take the time to unsubscribe from email distribution lists – they just set their email filters to send all offers to spam. This makes it increasingly difficult for marketers to determine relevancy.

Since consumers decide whether they want to opt-in (and opt-out) for mobile offers, it’s even more critical for marketers to understand consumer preferences and tailor their offers; otherwise, their opt-in rates will be low and/or opt-out rates high. Even more important, for those that have opted out, the opportunity to get them to opt-in again in the future is even more limited if they’ve had a bad user experience. Marketers lose their golden opportunity to gain a mobile consumer.

Asking the right questions (through “gating”), offering direct response opportunities at retail, and being able to analyze meaningful data offers a powerful tool towards ensuring relevancy.  But, only if the marketer actually delivers what the consumer says they want.

Stay Tuned: Next up – How to Get it Right!

What I learned about Mobile/Mobile Marketing in 2013

2013 seems to have been the breakout year for marketers!  What better way to reach consumers than at their finger tips?   As VP of Sales for SpyderLynk, I am encouraged by the number of questions and time marketers are taking to learn about the different mobile technologies and to really take stock of how mobile can be made an effective part of their overall marketing strategy.

Most marketers I’ve met this year want to be sure that whatever mobile strategy they choose fits into their mold – rather than the other way around.  However, new mobile technologies and companies are popping up at such a rapid pace that it is a monumental task to try to understand it all.   The challenge for marketers is to not become overwhelmed and do nothing – and get passed by the competition.  Those that are willing to experiment, fail and try again will find their way.

My biggest lesson learned this year is that marketers have learned and are becoming much more mobile savvy, especially in the use of mobile barcodes. A prime example is the QR code.  It has been around a while, but the buzz in marketing circles is still one of pondering what to do with them. Common themes are they are unattractive, offer little call to action, and consumers are still confused about what they are and what they are going to get when (or if) they scan it.

Marketers tested the QR code and have realized it positives and negatives. Marketers liked that the QR code led them down the path of communicating with consumers in-store and out-of-home; however, marketers quickly became disenchanted with its lack of security, its odd look and the challenging task of trying to evolve engagement.

The SnapTag does all of this better and marketers have now turned to the SnapTag with excitement!  Every single marketer I’ve met this year remarks how attractive the SnapTag is.  They love the branding aspect the SnapTag offers.  They are also in love with the fact that no one can hack into the SnapTag and redirect the intended experience.  Since the SnapTag can only be read by the SnapTag App or through SpyderLynk’s server, promotional companies can confidently run campaigns offering millions of dollars in sweepstakes and instant win campaigns.

Marketers know what they want to do with the SnapTag.  They have learned.  I believe 2014 will be the year of the SnapTag.  The big winner will be the consumer.   Promotions, coupons, product reviews, mCommerce, sweepstakes, instant wins, how-to videos, commercials, manuals, work schedules and so much more are safely delivered to consumers’ finger tips.

What I want to learn in 2014 is who will be the first person to win a $1 million prize from a SnapTag promotion!

Big DATA…is it really big and why?

Everyone is talking about big data these days, but does everyone understand what it is and why it is important? First, let’s define what we at SpyderLynk believe big data is. Consumer data has been collected for a long time from traditional sources like consumer surveys, offer redemptions, direct mail campaigns and point of sale systems about consumer preferences, purchasing patterns and, equally important, what influences consumer behaviors. But, the evolution of the digital world and, especially mobile, has dramatically increased the amount and complexity of data that is available to marketers. The coupling of mobile with things like geo location, digital couponing, social media and mobile barcodes gives marketers an unprecedented ability to collect data and adjust marketing campaigns on a real time basis. I think we all can agree that the digital world has created bigger and better data, hence the coining of the term BIG DATA.

The challenge for marketers today is determining what data to collect and what to do with it once it’s collected. Big data is essential, for sure, but what really matters is the insights gained from the data and the subsequent decisions that marketers make and the actions they take that will allow them to capitalize on the data.  Harnessing the power of big data is no easy feat and requires careful strategic planning and execution of marketing campaigns.

So, what CAN big data do for marketers? The key areas in which big data can have a huge impact, in our opinion, are consumer engagement, consumer awareness, brand loyalty and marketing optimization. Big data can deliver insights into what consumers want, when they want it and how they want it delivered. Second, it can help marketers discover what influences brand loyalty and what offers will keep consumers coming back. Third, through careful measurement and analyses, big data can help marketers optimize their marketing spend and campaigns across multiple channels.

Marketers trying to use their own internal systems to collect and analyze big data in a meaningful way face a daunting challenge. So, many look to outside vendors to help them collect and analyze all the data they are collecting from multiple agencies, media companies, POS systems and primary source data companies.  But there are few vendors that offer marketing solutions and data analysis. Trying to manage multiple data analysis, vendors and solutions providers creates another layer of complexity and in many ways, muddies the marketing waters, rather than bringing clarity to marketing insights

Our recommendation to our prospective clients is to find an all-in-one solutions provider that has deep experience in marketing and the systems to not only support the collection and analyses of big data, but develop marketing strategies to capitalize on big data to make a meaningful impact on ROI, brand engagement and loyalty.


Building Bridges to the Consumer – By SpyderLynk CEO Nicole Skogg

Impulse conversion. That’s what I spent a lot of 2013 thinking about, as a consumer, as a marketer, and as a technologist. I think impulse conversion is the single most powerful and transformative aspect of mobile. For example, I was at AT&T buying my new iPhone last week and didn’t like their cases, so I went to Amazon on my new iPhone while the guy was checking me out on his tablet and within 90 seconds I’d selected a new case for my phone and it showed up at my house in 2 days. Impulse conversion. Another example, I was shopping at Abercrombie and Fitch on Black Friday (ok, yes it was 1am, don’t judge) and found a sweater that I had to have for 50% off, but the line was an hour long, so I jumped on my mobile, found the sweater online, purchased it and it showed up at my house a few days later. Impulse conversion. On the other hand, I was watching the news before work yesterday and there was an announcement that it was Colorado Gives Day, I thought to myself, I really should give $50 to this worthy charity for disabled athletes which they were featuring. I had full intent to do so, but then I finished getting ready, got my baby ready, got in the car, drove to work and the intent was totally forgotten until now and it’s Colorado Gives Day is over. Failed impulse conversion. In this case, the media and PR worked, stirring the emotion to give and creating intent, yay! But, without a bridge to help me convert that intent, I never fulfilled my impulse.

As marketers, we have a new opportunity with mobile as nearly all consumers in the US are walking around right now with a transacting device in their hands. Actually, the opportunity is even bigger than transactions, nearly all US consumers right now are walking around with an engagement-driving, relationship-building, experience-creating, data-enabling, promotion-activating, coupon-storing, social-connecting, transaction devices. So the opportunity goes way beyond driving interest and intent. We need to build bridges and stimulate engagement so that the intent is easily converted. Build bridges to the consumer through mobile activators and induce engagement through meaningful mobile experiences and offers.

If the intent is there, then the media worked, the advertising worked, the creative worked, and the campaign worked. Great job! But, the next and most valuable step is to cause conversion and measure it. Whether the conversion is tied directly to a transaction or to a meaningful engagement, our jobs are to build the bridge to the consumer. Make it easy for them to convert their impulse. If not, they’ll finish getting ready, get the baby ready and walk out the door.

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