Right Now, Mobile is a Service

Brian DeaganSince the news broke that GameSnake.com and Knotice are entering into a partnership, I thought I’d take a moment to offer some behind-the-scenes insight on how this partnership came about, and how it’s reflective of our current, overall mobile philosophy.
The Partnership
If you like playing pickup sports, or going mountain biking with a group, GameSnake.com is perfect for you. GameSnake members are able to configure their entire portfolio of physical activity in one place.

Members put in the activities they like and how far they’re willing to travel to participate. When anyone within that mileage radius, skill level and preferred activity organizes a game online, the other people that satisfy those criteria are sent an email and/or a mobile alert. Knotice will be sending the emails and alerts. Members can accept/decline the invitation, or communicate with each other and discuss specifics. GameSnake members will also be able to see what games are going on via bi-directional SMS (e.g. text to the GameSnake shortcode).

GameSnake is ground-breaking in their blend of offline and online social networking. They offer a place for sports and recreation enthusiasts to congregate and communicate both on and offline. GameSnake provides a valuable service to active people. Their approach coincides with a core principal to our approach to mobile marketing.

The Philosophy

Mobile marketing is only as good as consumer adoption. While adoption of standard services, like voice minutes, continues to increase rapidly, consumers have been slower in incorporating other services like SMS, MMS and data plans. In certain demos, yes, the adoption is already there. In others, the numbers will increase with time; and improvements in the overall mobile experience will spur growth in those mobile content delivery methods.

For now, mobile marketing programs are only as good as a consumer’s willingness to engage.

The numbers bear that out. In a report cited by eMarketer in January, and originally published by Deloitte Development and Harrison Group, only 61-percent of consumers that have a mobile device actually text message. That is a cross-section of all demographics with 86-percent of “Millennials” (ages 13-24) texting and only 15-percent of “matures” (ages 61-75). Internet access for all user demographics is all the way down at 35-percent.

While Knotice has capabilities ranging from the mobile web to MMS couponing the numbers show low adoption. Consumers are more interested in mobile marketing if it is adding value to their consumer experience and less interested if you’re trying to sell them something. As the trust begins to build between the consumer and their mobile device the adoption curve will spike and mobile marketing will evolve. Until then, it’s all about service. Until then, it’s all about value-added services that make a consumer’s life a little better, and in turn, the brand relationships a little stronger.

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