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Mobile marketing: It's the best of times and the worst of times

Steve Olenski
Master Principal Sales Architect

Would paraphrasing Charles Dickens' classic A Tale of Two Cities be considered the infusing of pop culture into an article dealing with marketing, advertising and branding?

The reason I ask of course is I am of course prone to this type of melding, if you will and I was curious if Dickens would be considered pop culture? Not sure to be honest with you but be that as it may, my borrowing of the the famous opening line to the classic tale is quite apropos when it comes the current state of mobile marketing.

mobile-marketing

Here is the actual full opening stanza to  A Tale of Two Cities:

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only."

Now the reason I share this entire opening line in its entirety is for the simple fact that there are other notable words and phrases that equally apropos.

It was the age of wisdom indeed as we know full well that there are a gazillion people on the planet who own a mobile phone/smartphone and that number is only going to go up as time goes by.

It was the age of foolishness as witnessed by the results of a survey of SMBs in the US and UK late last year which revealed that just 6% had a mobile optimized website.

It was the epoch of incredulity for I was incredulous when I read the results of a study conducted by Responsys which revealed among other things:

mobile-marketing

It was the spring of hope for it would appear that consumers are taking a shine and liking to mobile marketing as witnessed by a recent headline on MarketingCharts.com Online Americans Say They Hold Generally Favorable Views of Mobile Marketing. The content of the article was based on the same study conducted by Responsys.

mobile-marketing

As you can see from the above chart, the operative word here is "generally" as in generally speaking consumers are ok with mobile marketing.

Clearly there are areas which need improving, however,

2014 - The Year of Mobile Marketing

I have to admit my fingers nearly became disconnected from my hands as I was typing the above headline. I say that because how long and for how many years have we heard that phrase "The Year of Mobile Marketing" being bandied about and touted? For far too long that's how many.

No I don't think 2014 will be The Year of Mobile Marketing" as I am starting to believe that any year will be able to claim such a moniker. Forbes contributor Kimberly Whitler would disagree, however, writing in her recent article that "... 2014 is poised to finally be the year that mobile becomes a mainstream marketing solution." Perhaps she is right. I hope she is right. But the cynic in me is saying "Believe it when you see it."

Regardless of whether this is truly the year of mobile marketing there are human traits inherent in every consumer that permeate every form of marketing including mobile marketing that will never change. The trait I am referring to is the human desire to get something; to receive a special deal, a discount, an exclusive; something that has to do with money and the saving thereof.

One last finding from the study: (In case you can't make out the question that solicited these responses it was "What are some of the reasons you have opted-in to receive marketing communications on your mobile device?")

mobile-marketing

Sources: Forbes, MarketingCharts.com, Wikimedia Commons

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