Archive for the ‘Mobile Marketing’ Category
Guest post by Luke Rees.
Every marketing executive wants to know when their efforts are getting through to consumers, and the online world is certainly making it easier to do so. Whilst there is still no way to track impressions from offline marketing (human interface programmes just aren’t that advanced yet…), the online world makes it possible to track real time results via impressions and clicks.
But although online is great for understanding your customer base, it may not be the best platform for converting leads into customers. In fact, a recent study found that two thirds of people get frustrated when they can only interact with a company online.
65% of businesses still consider the phone their strongest lead source, so how can marketers track when their online efforts are generating phone calls?
Here are five techniques marketers can use to better understand their customers; to streamline their experience with the contact centre; and to ultimately improve ROI.
Click-to-call tracking allows advertisers to identify and measure calls to their business after an ad click through occurs. Google recently announced they are offering this service free for their AdWords users.
How it works:
- a code is placed on the company’s website or mobile site;
- this code generates a unique forwarding number for each AdWords click;
- when a customer calls from a unique number you can link it back to a specific page on your website, as well as publisher sites within the display network, to see the types of calls that are being generated;
- with the help of Google Universal Analytics it is possible to track the keywords (i.e. search phrases) the customer used before clicking on your webpage. Your call centre staff are therefore already clued-in about the specific needs of the customer.
Data from this new free feature allows marketers to understand which keywords and ads are driving the most phone calls from your website, as well as where the most valuable calls are coming from.
Google’s call conversion tool allows marketers to optimise each page of their website by seeing the amount of engagement it’s getting, but there are also more sophisticated methods available for tracking where customers are coming from.
Here are two more techniques for tracking customer acquisition:
- IP and ISP (Subscriber Trunk Dialing) tracking software allows agents to see the exact geographical location where calls are coming in from;
- integrating call tracking with bid management software can allow marketers to see the keywords that lead to the most offline telephone conversions. Having this data means they can fine tune their PPC and SEO campaigns.
Companies who understand the needs of their clients and know how to target them are likely to significantly reduce their cost per lead. For one company who had their data reviewed this was as much as 50% reduction.
Conversion to call
Call tracking companies like ResponseTap provide software which allows marketers to track the entire customer journey, not just the initial call.
With the help of web analytics programmes it is possible to see:
- which keywords the customer used before calling;
- the publisher which drove the visitor to the website;
- the webpages they looked at before, during and after each call.
Integrating call tracking with analytics software like Google Adwords tracking, Adobe SiteCatalyst, or DC Storm can further improve customer understanding and increase the conversion to the right kind of call.
One company wanted to reduce information only calls to make capacity for Sales calls. By reorganising content for existing members and non-members differently they were able to increase the conversion to the right kind of call by 66%.
Conversion to sale
Wouldn’t it be great if your call centre staff new exactly the needs of the customer before they’ve even picked up the phone? These three strategies do just that, which significantly increases your chance of making a sale:
- Call screening alerts the agent about the campaign that has motivated their call. A phrase is read out to the agent before or after a call, telling them information like how the caller found your website, and what keyword they typed in;
- Dynamic call routing allows companies to route a call depending on to how a visitor have found their website. The call can then be directed to the best team, department or person within the business;
- SIP (Session Initiation Protocol) can be integrated into your call centre tactics. SIP is a signalling protocol that makes it possible to implement services like voice-enriched e-commerce, web page click-to-dial, or Instant Messaging depending on the preferences of the individual customer.
Using smarter and more sophisticated routing to get the calls to the right people will result in increased ROI. One of the businesses who had their data reviewed saw an uplift in sales of 15%.
Higher order value
Increasing the average order value (AOV) at the end of the customer journey is the final part of the customer journey which marketers can optimise through clever call tracking.
Two way to ensure customers spend bigger are:
- URL callbacks allow you to send data about the caller to an online system at the start or end of the call in real time. By storing this data in a database, you can integrate with other online solutions like web analytics or CRM solutions to better understand the customer experience and needs.
- CRM Integration: instead of using your CRM to just be a system that retains customer information based on manual entries, integrating your website and call tracking software brings in valuable customer information directly into your CRM. It also enables complete end-to-end reporting of lead to conversion through the call channel.
One company presented the call handler with the actual landing page the customer arrived at so that they had an immediate understanding about their intent. As a result they believe AOV went up 20%.
By taking each point of the customer’s journey in isolation, businesses will begin to notice real results.
Let’s take a look at the example company numbers for each metric, before and after they integrated four call tracking strategies.
So initially traffic acquisition went up 50%, then conversion to phone call improved by 66%, conversion to sale went up 15% and finally AOV increased by 20%:
- 1,000,000 visitors
- converting at 1% from visit to call
- converting at 20% from call to sale
- at an AOV of £1000
= £2,000,000 revenue
After (assuming some fairly typical conversion metrics, and the improvement percentages taken from each of the businesses above)
- 2,000,000 visitors
- converting at 1.66% to call
- converting at 23%
- at an AOV of £1200
= £9,163,200 revenue
The difference on these metrics is a 458% improvement. By implementing some clever software with a few smart tactics to connect online and offline efforts, it is possible to improve marketing ROI exponentially.
Gone are the days when a mobile-enabled web presence was an afterthought. According to CNN, “Americans used smartphone and tablet apps more than PCs to access the Internet (in January 2014) — the first time that has ever happened.”
Also, consider these stats from the compilation below: about half of all U.S. adults now own smartphones; that figure rises to 76% for millennials. Nearly half of consumers say they won’t return to a website if it doesn’t load properly on their mobile devices. And mobile payments aren’t just for buying lattes—three-quarters of B2B vendors say they plan to offer mobile commerce by the end of 2014.
What do advertisers need to know about mobile access? How large is the mobile share of social network traffic? How does the online use of tablet owners differ from PC users? What the key differences between mobile and desktop search?
Find the answers to these questions and more here in almost two dozen facts, statistics and research findings about mobile marketing and web use from the past several months.
1. There are now 143 million smart phones in use in the U.S., and 71 million tablets. (Heidi Cohen)
2. Mobile internet access enabled by smartphones and tablets has nearly doubled the amount of time spent online since 2010. (Heidi Cohen)
3. 91% of U.S. adults now own a mobile phone. 61% of those are smartphones. (Heidi Cohen)
4. Though according to another source, 18% of adults do not own a cellphone. (iMedia Connection)
5. Smart phone use varies by age group. 81% of U.S. adults age 25-34 own a smartphone, as do 70% of teens and half of adults age 55 and over. (Heidi Cohen)
6. The leading platforms for U.S. smartphone use are Android (53%) and iPhone (40%)). Blackberry now accounts for just 3% of the market. (Heidi Cohen)
7. 189 million Facebook users (almost one out of five) are mobile-only, and mobile use accounts for 30% of Facebook ad revenue. (Fast Company)
8. And 751 million (nearly three-quarters of the total) Facebook users access the network from mobile devices at least some of the time. (Digital Buzz Blog)
9. Twitter has more than 500 million total users. 288 million users are active monthly, collectively sending out over 400 million tweets each day. (Digital Buzz Blog)
10. 25% of smartphone owners ages 18–44 say they “can’t recall the last time their smartphone wasn’t next to them.” (Fast Company)
11. 76% of millennials own a smartphone. 73% own a laptop. (The Social Media Hat)
12. Marketers spent $4.4 billion on mobile advertising in the U.S. in 2012. That figure doubled to $8.5 million in 2013; and that figure is projected to quadruple to $31.1 billion by 2017. Search advertising accounts for about half of the total. (Heidi Cohen)
13. Mobile ads perform 4-5 times better than online ads. (iMedia Connection)
14. 25% of Americans use mobile devices (primarily tablets) only to access the Internet. And there are five times as many cellphones in the world as there are PCs. (iMedia Connection)
15. Forget branded apps though. 93% of consumers say branded apps don’t contribute to their brand loyalty. (iMedia Connection)
16. And there’s this: “99% of apps only get used once. Unless your app does something amazing that no one else’s does, then the reality is that it will get downloaded, opened and forgotten about.” (The Social Media Hat)
17. 60% of Twitter users access the network from mobile devices at least some of the time. (Digital Buzz Blog)
18. Tablet users spend, on average, 50% more online than do PC users. (The Social Media Hat)
19. Nearly half of consumers say they won’t return to a website if it doesn’t load properly on their mobile devices. (The Social Media Hat)
20. On desktop searches, roughly one-third of clicks go to the top organic result. Average CTR on mobile devices tends to skew even more towards the first position, as smaller screens offers fewer listings at any one time. (Brent Carnduff)
21. Currently, about half of B2B vendors sell through mobile (including stores and applications), while 3 in 4 respondents plan to offer mobile commerce by the end of 2014. (MarketingCharts)
Mobile web search is no longer of importance only to restaurants and retailers seeking to bring in more local street traffic. It’s rapidly becoming imperative even for the big-data, desktop-centric B2B world. Consider that, according to recent findings from the Pew Research Center:
- • 86% of adults own a mobile phone (the percentage is even higher among business professionals), and more than half of them use their phones to access the Internet.
- • Smart phones now outsell PCs.
- • 28% of all Internet usage is on mobile phones.
- • In sectors like travel, retail, and entertainment, mobile search queries have increased roughly 70% in the past year.
- • B2B mobile web use still trails consumer search, but is growing rapidly. Anecdotally, one of our clients had 4% of all access to their corporate website come from smart phones last month; not a huge number, but that’s up from just 1% a year ago. Another launched a mobile version of its company website in March; traffic to it has surged 250% in the past six months.
While mobile site SEO has some similarities to traditional best practices, it also has many of its own unique requirements. Here are a set of on-page, technical and link-building techniques to optimize a mobile website for search.
On-Page Mobile SEO Techniques
As with traditional websites, follow basic on-page optimization best practices on mobile sites: use keywords in your mobile site content, headings, keyword links, image alt tags, and of course, page meta titles. But keep meta titles short: absolutely no more than 65 characters (including spaces), and preferably 45 or less (the display limit in the Safari browser).
Social and mobile go together, so include popular social sharing buttons (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and email) on your mobile web pages to make them easy to share.
It may seem obvious, but make sure your corporate website and mobile website link to each other.
The specific search phrases that people use on mobile devices are often different than those they may use from a desktop. And it’s often easier to rank for popular short phrases in mobile search than in desktop search due to the lower level of competition. So, use Google’s keyword research tool to analyze mobile-specific search phrases.
Mobile SEO Link Building
Get your mobile site listed on popular mobile sites like Google Maps, Yelp, Foursquare and Facebook Places.
Also get the site listed in high-authority mobile directories.
Include your mobile website link in your YouTube channel and add mobile site calls to action (CTAs) within your posted videos.
Technical Mobile SEO
Some sources have suggested that using a single website with responsive design is best for SEO, with a subdirectory approach (company.com/mobile) being second-best, followed by a subdomain structure (m.company.com) and finally a separate top-level domain (company.mobi). However, Mashable more recently reported that the search engines have figured things out and there is no longer any SEO penalty for having a separate mobile URL.
Validate your code. Mobile devices are less forgiving of dodgy code than desktop PCs.
Follow Google’s recommendations for building mobile-optimized websites.
Following the mobile website SEO best practices above should help your site rank well even in highly competitive spaces. In the (for now, at least) less crowded mobile B2B space, it should really help your site stand out.
Additional Mobile SEO Resources
Mobile SEO Best Practices (long and rather technical, but very well done; if terms like “site transcoding,” “user agent detection” and xHTML don’t phase you, then check it out)
You’ve seen the statistics: mobile browsing (e.g., browsing the web using a smart phone or other mobile device) will eclipse desktop web browsing sometime in 2013. Yikes! More than half of my website traffic coming from mobile phones? I’m not ready!
Relax (unless you’re in the relatively small group of businesses that shouldn’t). Mobile browsing is unquestionably having an impact on website strategy, but the impact varies widely among different sectors based on a variety of factors.
Type of business: if you run a bar, restaurant or specialty retail shop that is dependent on local traffic, then by all means you had better have a sophisticated local and mobile web strategy. As recently as five years ago, many of your patrons were likely finding you through the (print) yellow pages. Most households don’t even want those tree-killing doorstops anymore, much less do they use them.
Local service businesses have a bit more breathing room, but only a bit. If you offer home repair, plumbing, electrical, landscaping or other types of services, your clients may use the “big screen” of a desktop or laptop PC to find your company, read about your offerings. and research reviews. But even this simple research is becoming increasingly mobile.
For B2B companies with complex offerings, however, the pressure is far less urgent. For considered purchases, where the research is generally conducted within the workplace environment, desktop browsing still reigns. Based on analysis of traffic patterns of b2b technology websites I’ve worked with (more than 40 are displayed in my Google Analytics home screen view currently), mobile browsing is a growing but still fairly small part of the picture. This is not a comprehensive study but is likely to be generally representative of B2B websites.
Note that, on the one hand, the share of total website traffic nearly doubled from the first quarter of 2011 to the first three months of 2012—a clear indication of increasing use of mobile browsers to access b2b websites. But note also that the mobile proportion is still only 1 of every 16 visitors on average, and as few as 1 of 50 at the low end of the range. Hence: prepare, but don’t panic.
That observation doesn’t tell the complete story, however, as a portion of those visitors are using tablets, with screens almost as large as small laptops. What’s really crucial to consider is how many visitors are coming to your site from a smart phone with a small format screen.
When tablets (such as the iPad) are excluded, the share of mobile visitors is considerably smaller; roughly 2/3 of all mobile visitors. These are the potential visitors for whom you really need an optimized mobile website experience. But though they have increased by nearly 50% in the past year, they still account for just 1 out of every 24 visitors to the typical B2B tech company website, on average.
Type of information sought: whereas desktop computers are used for a wide range of tasks including in-depth research, mobile devices (in a b2b context) are most frequently used for three purposes:
- • Fact-checking: is the software both Windows- and Mac-compatible, or better yet, completely cloud-based? What are the dimensions of a device, or specific properties of a material?
- • Location-based information: where is your closest sales office? Where can I take the item for service?
- • Communication: not surprisingly, as communications were the initial purpose of mobile devices, your customers and prospects will often visit your mobile site seeking to contact your company. Make it easy with click-to-call buttons, email links, and links to your Facebook, Twitter and other social media accounts.
Demographics: while one has to be careful here to avoid stereotypes (and it is true that 82% of CEOs own smartphones), there’s no question that digital natives (those born in 1990 or later) are simply more immersed in mobile technology (having literally grown up with it) and are therefore likely to be, all other things being equal, heavier users of the mobile web than are typical b2b decision makers (generally in their 40s, 50s or 60s).
Again, a sophisticated mobile presence is essential now for bars, clubs, gyms, universities, restaurants, theaters, and any other business catering to 20-somethings. Digital natives are the b2b decision makers of tomorrow, so again, when it comes to b2b mobile web presence, companies need to prepare but not panic.
Specifically, here are three steps b2b marketers should take today if they don’t already have a mobile strategy in place:
1. Check you website analytics to see what percentage of your visitors are coming from mobile devices. If it’s more than 5%, you need to develop a mobile plan for website design. If it’s more than 10%, you need to develop a mobile website—quickly.
2. Check to see how your current website looks on a variety of mobile devices, or use mobile device emulators. If it isn’t the experience you’d want your customers and prospects to have, you need to develop a mobile plan.
3. When developing your mobile site plan, be sure to incorporate best practices in mobile website design.
When it comes to mobile and b2b, don’t freak out over the hype, but do take action.
Guest post by University Alliance.
Mobile access to the web has surpassed browser usage. Consumers are growing fonder of their smartphones and tablets, using them to access content and make online purchases in staggering numbers. In fact, by 2015 more U.S. Internet users will access the web through smartphones than through PCs, according to technology site Mashable.com.
Still not convinced? Consider these 2012 statistics:
- • Twitter estimates 55% of users access the site through a mobile device.
- • 34% of marketers have generated leads using Twitter.
- • Click-through rates on search result ads are higher on mobile, according to a Marin Software study. In the fourth quarter 2011, smartphone click-throughs were 1.25%, tablets were 1.31%, and desktop/laptops were .95%.
- • 57% of Facebook users “like” a business because they want to receive special offers and promotions, according to Mashable.com.
- • Consumers are engaging with their favorite companies on Facebook, says Mashable.com. 77% said they interact by reading posts and updates, while 17% share experiences and news stories, and 13% post updates about brands they like.
- • 56% of consumers are more likely to recommend a brand to a friend after becoming a Facebook fan, according to Mashable.com.
But what do these trends mean for today’s businesses? And what do marketers and business owners need to know—and more importantly, do—to keep ahead of consumer demands? First, they should recognize the benefits of creating a mobile strategy that their best customers will respond to.
What Can A Mobile Strategy Do For Me?
Once upon a time (like a year ago), having a mobile strategy was an option, and revamping your company website for mobile was very progressive. Now, having a mobile strategy is a must—no matter what size your business is.
Consumers use mobile devices for entertainment, with books, movies, games and videos; to interact with friends and business on social networks, like Facebook and Twitter; and increasingly, to find information and make immediate buying decisions. What does mobile mean to your company?
Mobile is a direct channel to your target audience. It can have a significant impact on your marketing efforts by increasing awareness of your brand, events and special offers. Mobile marketing can drive traffic to certain locations, and provide a mechanism for instant feedback and engagement. Plus, it can create a whole new generation of opt-in prospects, and give you the means to convert them to customers and evangelists.
Mobile can help you acquire new customers, increase your engagement with them, and drive sales; and you’ll be more successful at all three when your brand message is delivered across all mobile platforms.
Cross-Platform Is a Must
It’s important to note that all mobile platforms are worthy of attention. Focusing on just the iPhone ignores huge sections of your market. Apps, games and videos must be developed for Androids and iPads, as well. And don’t forget about the Amazon Kindle, Windows Phone and BlackBerry. Fortunately, cross-platform mobile frameworks make it easier for developers to generate new versions of an app, so it functions properly across platforms.
When done well a smart mobile marketing strategy can be hugely successful, as demonstrated by the Oklahoma Lottery.
How One Organization Successfully Embraced Mobile
The Oklahoma Lottery recognized mobile marketing’s power to reach new markets. They launched a 30-day promotion, creating an exclusive Mobile VIP club. Participants had the chance to win $100 per day by texting in to join the club. Updates and winners were posted on the company Facebook page and mobile website.
At the end of the month-long contest, the Oklahoma Lottery had over 13,000 new, highly engaged fans. The very next day, they launched an iPhone app, and invited the Mobile VIP club members to download it. The result? 667 click-throughs from the text to the app on Day 1. By targeting their audience through their mobile devices, they amassed an entire community they can tap into to promote special events, drive sales and introduce new products.
With the enormous growth of mobile devices, mobile marketing strategies are a must for every business. As the Oklahoma Lottery’s effort shows, knowing how to create and execute a mobile marketing campaign can open up tremendous opportunities for your business.
Developing a Mobile Marketing Strategy is Essential
Mobile media marketing puts your brand right into the hands of your target audience. No one knows what the next mobile craze will be, but it’s clear that mobile devices are increasingly the consumer’s choice for staying in touch, finding information and making buying decisions. Savvy marketers will continue to stay on top of mobile marketing trends and deliver informative, usable content that their customers want—no matter where they are.
This guest post was provided by University Alliance and submitted on behalf of University of San Francisco. USF offers online marketing courses including SEO training, search engine marketing, social media training, advanced mobile marketing training and more. To learn more about University of San Francisco’s certificate programs visit www.usanfranonline.com.
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