Apr 02, 2011
Can You Hear Me Now? Using Direct Mail to Make Mobile Marketing More Effective, and Vice Versa
Mobile marketing is still relatively uncharted territory. Marketers have dabbled in it here and there for the past five years or so, but it has only been relatively recently - in the past year or two - that mobile marketing has really begun to stand on its own two legs (a development that goes hand-in-hand with the increasing market penetration of Smartphones).
Now, no marketing channel by itself can accomplish all of your goals. But when you integrate two channels - in this case up-and-coming mobile marketing with tried-and-true direct marketing - the results can be incredibly powerful.
Integrating your direct mail and mobile marketing campaigns can help you open new response channels (and thereby increase your overall response rate) and reach new audiences. Plus, because a mailing list is far easier to come by than a list of mobile phone numbers, direct mail can be the ideal trigger to launch your mobile marketing campaign.
Open up new response channels
Direct mail giant Valpak (they send the envelopes of coupon-based advertisements) is currently testing the effectiveness of mobile calls to action on their printed coupons. Brooklyn-based Chopstix Chinese restaurant is among one of the advertisers testing the program - Chopstix's coupon asks readers to text the keyword WOK to a short five-digit code that then enrolls them into the restaurant's mobile VIP club.
As part of the promotion, consumers get a coupon sent to their phone when they first text in. Then they are asked to join the mobile VIP club to get regular communications from Chopstix. The mobile call to action makes the restaurant's direct mail program more measureable and more actionable than relying solely on print coupon redemption for tracking purposes. And now, the restaurant has two ways to stay in touch with its customers - by mail and mobile.
Reach new audiences
Contrary to what most people think, the reach of mobile marketing is by no means limited to American teens. In fact, an April 2010 study by the marketing agency Merkle found that 63% of U.S. adults aged 30-39 use text messaging to communicate with friends and family, as do 49% of adults aged 40-49.
The opportunity to tap those consumers is huge: 95% of existing mobile phone contracts having text messaging built into the agreement. Even better, text messages have a 90%+ open rate - compared to less than 40% for e-mails.
Go beyond text messaging
But just as the opportunity to leverage text messaging is potentially huge, direct marketers like Valpak are looking even farther beyond - to Smartphone applications that allow consumers to browse Valpack deals on their mobile devices. In May 2010, the number of Smartphone owners in the U.S. hit 49 million. With that many consumers using their phones for a whole range of communication (voice, text, email, social media), many marketers are, understandably, investing heavily in mobile marketing.
One way to tap into mobile marketing even beyond text messaging is through quick response (QR) codes. When scanned with a mobile phone's camera, these codes provide consumers with additional value - from free content to special discounts. You can include a QR code on any Click2Mail direct marketing piece, from flyer self-mailers to postcards.
You could, for example, send out a series of postcards to promote your upcoming webinar. When recipients scan the QR code, they are asked to join your special "Mobile VIP Club" (so you can send them text messages) and are automatically entered into a contest to win books and whitepapers as well as preview videos of the event.
It's said that two heads are better than one, and that's certainly the case when it comes to marketing channels - mobile marketing and direct mail are great on their own, but together they generate the best results. Plus, combining these two forms of communication offers a more interesting, more interactive experience for your prospects, and allows them more options to choose from in how they want to communicate with you. (And it's more likely to generate word-of-mouth buzz.)