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How to Retain Customers with Mobile Marketing

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Mobile marketing represents a huge opportunity. It provides a touchpoint for you to keep those who are already customers engaged with your brand and gives you a way to communicate with them on a personal level. Use these tips to help you retain your customers through mobile marketing.

Develop for the medium

As the Canadian communications philosopher Marshall McLuhan famously said, “the medium is the message”. The most important part of going mobile is taking advantage of your platform and developing uniquely for it. 

With mobile technology, you’re afforded the opportunity to connect with people on the go. Use it! Treating your mobile campaign the same as an online or even a physical one is a surefire way to create a flop, in both response ­rate and brand reputation.

Use what you have

With mobile, you’ve got the ability to play music, audio and video, and you can even use interactive panels to showcase your product. QR codes allow you to direct consumers to exactly the content you’d like them to see, coming from a physical object such as a billboard, flyer or an advert in a magazine.                                                      

A good example of a company taking advantage of the unique capabilities of mobiles is JetBlue, a travel company that launched an extremely successful advertising campaign connecting with users that felt annoyed by uncaring flight services.                                               

As part of a wider campaign that used the metaphor of a pigeon, users who loaded their mobile service were prompted to u​se their microphone t​o imitate the bird. Once they’d done this, it followed them through to the website. Creating little games and hooks like this goes a long way in building consumer interest, and are the mark of an innovative and resilient marketing campaign. Bringing the medium to life through your product is the best way to attract new customers and to make returning ones feel like you know what you’re doing.                  

Don’t be intrusive

Google’s informal corporate motto is “don’t be evil” (nowadays it’s been changed to “do the right thing”, but most people remember the former). This reminder was originally made in response to the way most big websites at the time were exploiting their user ­base, employing underhanded or annoying tactics to generate short ­term sales at the loss of long­ term users.                    

The mobile market is saturated with a lot of very aggressive advertising campaigns. Many in-­app advertisements or monetisation schemes try to steal focus from the user’s mobile controls, by playing un­skippable audio or video. This is detrimental to the marketer, as the last thing you want to do is associate your product with feelings of annoyance or frustration.                        

It’s best to drop the intrusion, especially for repeat customers, and come up with a friendlier way to drive sales that is relevant to the customer. This is better for both immediate conversions and long ­term brand loyalty.   

Give users a reason

Ask yourself this question: Why are my customers coming back to me, and not to my competitors? If you can’t clearly define this statement, you lack incentives.                                         

First, ask yourself how often you want your customers coming back to your website (hourly, daily, weekly, or at no fixed interval). If you’re trying to convince people to come back hourly, you better have a reason for them to load your website every time they check their phone.                       

A lot of mobile games, for example, use an hourly currency bonus or an in­game reward to keep people logging in – even if they only tap in to get the reward, they’re coming back, engaging with the product, and making it part of their daily routine.                                                    

Try launching a coupon system, or using an app as a platform for sales and promotions. If you’re selling coffee, why not have daily deals, or try a mobile version of a loyalty card?                            

Make it easy for users

Make your marketing an intrinsic part of the user’s routine; don’t make people jump through hoops to download your app or receive the service. If a customer has to leave your app, sign up for your newsletter, follow you on twitter, and rate on you on the App Store just to get what you were going to give them anyway, they’re likely to leave before you have the chance.                               

As well as this, don’t try to take too much from your user, in the form of social follows or signing up for other services. Certainly, give them the option, but do it sparingly.                                    

People don’t appreciate being strung around, and they won’t bother to spend ten minutes doing something on a mobile phone. A good marketing campaign won’t feel like a chore – it should be doing the chores for you.      

From the horse’s mouth

In any campaign, it’s important to receive user feedback; respond to the comments with updates; and, most importantly, listen to your customers.

Keep a log of common complaints or criticisms. One person shouting in a large pool of people can be an outlier, but if you start noticing a common thread (even if there are hundreds of people leaving glowing reviews), think about how you can best rectify it.                                          

Certainly, it’s impossible to please absolutely everyone, and sometimes what one group wants will alienate another, but it’s important to consider all the information you have at your disposal.

It is well known that the cost of obtaining a new customer is much greater than the cost of keeping an existing one. Someone who has bought from you is much more engaged with your brand. Keep them that way and they won’t even think about those alternatives that are really just a click away.

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