Trend Spotting: Direct Digital Marketing in 2010

Josh GordonOver the next two installments of The Lunch Pail, I will provide some foundation for two of the more promising trends in direct digital marketing.
I first mentioned the recently published retail interactive marketing research from Forrester’s Shar VanBoskirk on Monday, specifically detailing the valuable roles of personalization and relevance in direct digital marketing. One other valuable nugget of information in the report, entitled Retailers Boost IM Spend To Drive Online Sales, is the pointer for marketers to “eventually invest in mobile.” While the annual “20XX is the year of mobile” columns are hitting the Web right now, I’ll spare us all some frustration and cut to the chase – mobile marketing is happening, but how the discipline of mobile marketing is developing is more important than the basic fact it exists, or the cursory non-predictions seen in most industry press. Predictably, marketers drive the market for mobile marketing service and solutions, and they have an enormous power to properly shape the way all businesses embrace the hottest channel in direct digital marketing.

With marketers in control, the most important trend that can develop in 2010 is for marketers to seek a single mobile marketing solution and service provider that is not only responsible for the execution of an SMS campaign or strategy, but also has the capacity to manage the database, develop mobile websites and landing pages, deliver personalized and relevant content, and use data from other direct digital marketing – and traditional marketing sources – to power triggered messaging. In short, marketers must seek the complete mobile marketing solution to achieve sustained engagement, success, through the channel.

Consider some of the issues currently plaguing mobile marketing.

According to a recent report, eight of every ten mobile phone users encounter at least one problem when trying to access content on the mobile Web. The inflated time consumers are forced to spend browsing and searching and dealing with problematic interfaces cuts down on touch points while leading toward general frustration and, eventually… attrition.

The same report also highlighted the value consumers place on personalized content – an even more important principle of modern marketing when using the mobile channel. Sixty-one percent of those surveyed claimed they would, “spend more time or money accessing” content on their mobile device if it were personalized. Another lost opportunity.

Then we have the mobile app craze that seems to be finding its way into every marketing meeting. The boss, and the boss’s boss, is enamored with this mobile app concept. The problem? Apps are gaining an improper perception in the market as effective mobile marketing. Instead, apps are simply targeted marketing for a specific audience. For more basis, read this commentary from the Chairman of the Mobile Marketing Association, Federico Pisani Massamormile, or study the demographic data in this white paper from our own Bryce Marshall. Both experts agree that SMS is the best method of effective mobile marketing.

Last, there is currently a lengthy time to market inherent in every mobile marketing endeavor because of the various demands from the carriers, who – to their credit – work hard to preserve the privacy of their subscribers.

A complete mobile marketing solution is able to address the issues that are beginning to pile up in mobile marketing from user experience problems while helping to shape the developing habits of the feature phone and smartphone user. In 2010, get informed, and be smart. Your customers will be grateful!

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  1. Posted December 30, 2009 at 2:42 pm | Permalink

    Great points and very well written. As an iPhone and iTouch app ourselves (Riff Raters), our challenge is to find the right target markets and use Guerrilla Marketing (or like you said) personalization to reach those that love music, play music and have an iPhone or iTouch without spending a ton of money. The SMS campaign and strategy are good points too. Thanks for the well written insight.

  2. Posted January 2, 2010 at 4:36 am | Permalink

    Thanks for the great posting – and happy new year to you all 🙂

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