2. Table of Contents
Mobile Marketing for Dummies
Mobile Marketing Using Texts/SMS
The Advent of User-Controlled Media
Mobile Codes Make Mobile Marketing a Breeze
Advertising through Apps
Bluetooth Advertising Hits Hard
Get Ready To Play With Advergames
Mobile Video Brings Video Advertising to Phones
Get Flashy With Flash Lite
Making Mobile Web Count
3. Mobile Marketing for Dummies
Keeping track of the many different ways that companies can market their products and
brands in the modern age is getting more and more difﬁcult. Itʼs getting to the point
where there is no conceivable shortage of ways to market your products, but the bigger
problem is that thereʼs so many ways that ﬁguring out the best ones for your business
and how they all work can be quite a chore. Weʼre here to help.
Mobile marketing is the cutting edge of advertising right now. The term “mobile
marketing” tends to refer to one of two ideas: the ﬁrst one being marketing through
mobile devices such as cell phones, and the second one marketing through physically
moving objects, such as moving billboards or road shows.
For the intents and purposes of these articles, weʼre going to spend most of our time
discussing the ﬁrst variety of mobile marketing. Getting on board with the second variety
is simple enough – at its very base, you could just nail a sign on the side of a truck and
that would fall under the second variety of mobile marketing.
The ﬁrst kind of mobile marketing, on the other hand, is becoming increasingly popular
and breaking into it as a startup company is one of the best ways to hit the marketplace
with a bang. Mobile marketing has entered the stage where itʼs still considered
somewhat revolutionary and a deﬁnite novelty, but is also mainstream enough that most
of the younger crowd will be receptive to the marketing.
Most forms of mobile marketing are centered around mobile phones. Part of the
reasoning why mobile marketing has taken off so much in the past few years has been
the advent and popularity of smartphones. With the technology of phones and
computers merging as rapidly as they have over the past few years, it should come as
no surprise that the marketing wave generated by the spread of personal computers and
the increasingly ubiquitous nation of the Internet is starting to spread out into the mobile
If you are a startup company, particularly one who is trying to market to the thirty ﬁve and
younger set, taking a foray out into mobile marketing via cell phones and smartphones is
an excellent choice if youʼre looking to make your products and brand stand on the
cutting edge. Itʼs important to keep up with the times when it comes to marketing,
particularly when youʼre working as a startup. Itʼs more important than ever to make a
serious impression on the market when youʼre ﬁrst launching yourself into it as a
business – and mobile marketing is one way to make that happen.
4. Mobile Marketing Using Texts/SMS
While this is not the most popular form of mobile marketing in the United States by a
long shot, the popularity of marketing via text message or SMS is so strong that itʼs
deﬁnitely worth a mention. There are companies in the United States that do engage in
mobile marketing through texting as well, but the restrictions on place in the United
States have made this a harder avenue of media marketing to break into unless you are
a startup that has a lot of money to spend on advertising.
Mobile marketing through text messages is exactly what it sounds like – a company
sends out advertisements and other form of communication to customers through a
texting service. This has been a very effective and popular form of advertising
throughout Asia and Europe in particular, despite being unpopular at the onset due to
people being concerned about spam.
If youʼre an American company, you might shy away from mobile marketing through
texting, as it might give the impression that youʼre “bothering” the customer with your
texts. While this might be true if mobile marketing through text is handled the same way
as “spamming” somebodyʼs inbox is through email, the reality of it is that mobile
marketing has found a great deal of purchase as an effective communication medium.
The trick is making it an opt-in system. In fact, in the United States itʼs a legal obligation
to make mobile marketing an opt-in, opt-out system, but this is the linchpin that keeps
using texting as a marketing medium from becoming spam. Using texts to get a hold of
potential customers is actually a great way to engage with customers in a similar way
that the customers engage with their friends on a regular basis – through text. If you
watch commercials, youʼre likely to come across a company or two advertising their
mobile marketing through text methods. Most companies who use this sort of method in
the States put out print, television, or radio ads advertising the fact that interested
consumers can contact the company through texting and get discounts and other such
promotional offers through texting.
If you as a startup are looking to take advantage of this version of mobile marketing,
youʼll need to contact a mobile operator for whatʼs called a short code, or the number
that your customers will have to text if theyʼd like to opt into your text marketing scheme.
Short codes can be prohibitively expensive for smaller startups, though – often they cost
at least 600-1000 dollars a month to maintain. To waylay costs, though, you can team
up with another startup and split the cost of the short code. This is one great way you
can introduce text marketing into your repertoire without it costing you a mint.
5. The Advent of User-Controlled Media
One of the major differences between mobile marketing and other forms is that itʼs
considered a form of user-controlled media. What this means is that mobile media is
entirely based on an opt-in scheme. With other forms of advertising, customers usually
donʼt have much of a choice about whether or not the advertising is going to turn up in
their lives. For example, should a consumer be watching television, commercials are
considered an inevitable part of the process. The consumer can always mute the
television or change the channel when the advertisements come on, of course, but
thereʼs nothing the consumer can do about the commercial break taking place. Print ads
and radio ads are similar – consumers can avoid them if they so wish, but thereʼs no way
that they can “opt out” of the radio playing commercials or the magazine advertising
With mobile marketing, however, the entire premise is based off of opt-in services.
Should a consumer wish to join your text marketing campaign, theyʼre the ones that
have to dial your companyʼs number to start receiving information. If the customer never
does so, then you as the company can never send them advertisements through mobile
means. Thanks to privacy concerns as well as the popularity of the “do not call list” in
addition to other anti-advertising factors that have become prevalent on phones in the
past few years, itʼs entirely impossible to go about sending unsolicited advertisements to
customers through mobile devices and have it be a legal operation.
This presents a unique challenge to the company that is trying to get its message out
through mobile media – namely, often companies must advertise the fact that theyʼre
doing a mobile media campaign. This might seems somewhat counterintuitive given that
this boils down to advertising the advertising, but the gains that can be reaped from
using mobile media advertising are so attractive that any startup with the money to
spend on a mobile media campaign will almost certainly see results.
The great thing about mobile media is that it allows companies to get in contact with
users the way that friends contact each other. Texting is considered a non formal
medium of contacting, and being able to establish a rapport with customers on this
personal level goes a long way toward building brand afﬁnity and a more personal
relationship with the customer.
If youʼre a startup looking to get into the area of mobile marketing, understand that the
beneﬁts might not be as immediate as those you might experience with other kinds of
marketing. However, this avenue can give you a long-lasting personal relationship with
customers. It really helps if you can ﬁnd another company to help waylay the costs with
you and enter into mobile marketing as a joint venture. If you do this, then youʼre likely
to see more immediate returns on your investment sooner.
6. Mobile Codes Make Mobile Marketing a Breeze
More traditional forms of mobile marketing might involve strapping an advertisement to
the back of a van and driving around. Thankfully due to the relentless drive of technology
startups and others companies can now work with more advanced methods of getting
the message out to their customers in a mobile manner. Text message advertising is
one of the more basic forms of using this type of technology to get the point across to
consumers, but now thereʼs even more advanced ways of doing so.
One of the increasingly popular methods of mobile marketing can be found in QR mobile
codes. You might have seen strange little white stamp-like stickers around that possess
black squares and ﬂecks printed on them. These arenʼt strange little works of grafﬁti art
– theyʼre actually methods of advertising!
With a QR mobile code, a certain message is inscribed within that pattern of white and
black. The way that a consumer accesses the advertisement is to take a picture of the
box with a mobile phone. The mobile phone accesses the data in the code, and then the
customer is taken to a certain point of advertising. This could be anything from a phone
number that the ad signals the phone to call, a website, or an embedded video.
The great thing about this kind of marketing is that itʼs relatively inconspicuous and has
an aura of mystery about it. The consumer, confronted with this strange little sticker, is
often compelled to take a picture of it and see what, exactly, the sticker is advertising.
Itʼs a non-invasive way of advertising that deﬁnitely gets the attention of potential
consumers and often whets their appetite for adventure.
QR mobile codes can be used in a number of ways. Thereʼs the ubiquitous sticker, often
found on telephone poles or message boards, sometimes with no other advertising
medium around it. If youʼd like to take a more proactive approach with it so that the
customer knows what the mobile code is advertising, you can put a mobile code in print
advertising or even on a television screen. All the customer has to do is take a picture,
and you can continue your advertising scheme though this unique and innovative
method of mobile advertising.
QR mobile codes are becoming increasingly popular among startups due to their
somewhat secretive nature and the way that they can pique curiosity among the
consumer. Itʼs a less in-your-face method of advertising that consumers enjoy – itʼs
almost like going on an Easter egg hunt and seeing what might be inside of the egg. If
youʼre a startup looking for an innovative way to get your message out on the waves,
consider QR mobile codes!
7. Advertising through Apps
Smartphones have become a ubiquitous part of daily life, particularly for the younger set.
Those of us who remember when cell phones ﬁrst came out, roughly the size of a brick
and just as heavy might be a bit bemused by the latest advances in technology.
Nowadays, it seems as though the latest smartphones can do everything but physically
make you dinner. There are deﬁnitely enough apps out there, however, to have the
phone tell you how to make dinner, at the very least.
On that note, apps are another way to harness the power of mobile marketing. This is
an especially good one for startups to consider, as app development and implementation
is actually one of the best ways to get the most out of mobile marketing for your money.
For those who arenʼt exactly in the know, an “app” is short for the word “application.”
Since smartphones are like mini computers but donʼt work in the exact same way, there
are certain programs that companies have developed to help smartphones function
more like a traditional computer. These programs are the apps.
Apps are extremely popular in todayʼs day and age, particularly given the prevalence of
smartphones. There are apps that specialize on everything from coupons to fashion to
locating others in the area for potential dates. What does this mean for people who are
interested in mobile marketing? Creating an app is a great way to get your message
across to users and help enhance your overall marketing presence.
Companies can use apps to great advantage. Many larger companies either sell or give
away apps to interested consumers, and then they pack those apps with either deals or
great content to share with the consumers who have installed the apps on their phones.
Having an app that centers around your business and products is a great way to keep
your loyal customers up to date on what your company is doing and how they can serve
the consumer better.
Not to mention, apps are deﬁnitely cutting-edge insofar as technology is concerned. If
you are able to offer you consumers an app for their smartphones, youʼre signaling to
the consumer that both you and your company are hip to the technological savvy of the
populace. Youʼll be able to get your customers information on an as-needed basis.
Apps can even help customers locate your stores or outlets if they should happen to be
in an unfamiliar area and have a sudden Jones for your product.
So if youʼre looking to break into the world of mobile marketing, you should most
certainly give app development a second look. If you can get your idea into an app and
onto the phones of your consumers, your consumers will most certainly be giving you a
second look as well – and a third, a fourth, a ﬁfth, and as many more as fast as
technology can travel.
8. Bluetooth Advertising Hits Hard
One of the newest ways of mobile marketing is through a device known as Bluetooth. If
youʼre not familiar with Bluetooth, itʼs time to get out from under the rock and back on top
of the mountain of advertising. Bluetooth is a method of transmitting wireless
information from one device to another. If youʼve ever heard of wireless mice and
keyboards, the secret to their magic is Bluetooth – when a key is struck on a wireless
keyboard, the Bluetooth connection registers the information and transmits it to the
computer wirelessly, much in the same way that a wire would function to move
information in a traditional computer setup.
This method can also be harnessed effectively for advertising purposes, particularly with
the development of smartphones. All smartphones these days come with Bluetooth
programmed in so consumers can use wireless headphones and transmit information
from the device in a way other than traditional wireless communication. This Bluetooth
toggle is nearly always on, so the smartphone is receptive to information that could be
casting around the area.
This is a perfect way to step in for advertising. Bluetooth advertising works by setting up
“hubs” in areas where you believe that interested consumers might be hanging out. A
good example of a Bluetooth hub might be at a mall, or a dining hall at a busy college
campus. Any place where thereʼs a high density of people is a great place to set up a
Bluetooth hub. When a customer with a smartphone walks by that has Bluetooth
activated on his or her phone, the hub will pick up on it. At that point, the hub sends a
query to the customerʼs phone, asking if he or she would like the information that the hub
The information sent by the hub can be anything from a screensaver to a coupon to a
link to your website to ringtones to a multimedia display. Anything that can be sent
wirelessly can be sent to a consumer through Bluetooth. The range of an individual hub
can be between 200 and 300 feet – so if youʼre at a convention or any place where there
are a lot of people wandering around, think of all the customers that can be queried by
If youʼre a startup who doesnʼt have a whole lot of money to spend on constant mobile
marketing campaigns, using Bluetooth technology can be a great way to get started,
since it doesnʼt require constant costs. If youʼre heading to a convention or you have a
booth in a mall, you can have a Bluetooth hub set up for that particular event. Even
better, you can track the amount of people who accept your Bluetooth-sent queries, so
you can effectively ﬁgure out how interested consumers are in your information and
make adjustments regarding the broadcasting of information and your Bluetooth
9. Get Ready To Play With Advergames
People love video games. Even those who shy away from considering themselves
“gamers” enjoy a bit of gaming every now and then – all you need to do is go sit on
public transportation for a couple of hours to see the masses of people playing Tetris on
their cell phones. Even those who havenʼt made the transition to the fancier
smartphones likely know how to play the snake game on their cell phones and probably
use it to wile away the empty minutes every now and then.
A savvy marketer sees this and starts dreaming of the possibilities. Bored consumers in
locations where they have nothing else to do but tinker with the video games
programmed into their cell phones are a prime market to start dropping advertising hints
to. The numbers also back up the simple observations – over one third of cell phone
users play video games on their cell phones at least occasionally. With this in mind, itʼs
easy to realize that this is a gigantic portion of the population. In marketing terms, this is
a gigantic portion of the population that could be looking at your advertisements.
This is where the Advergame comes in. The name might be a little strange, but thereʼs
nothing weird about how an advergame can help you get your marketing message
across to an audience who often has nothing better to do than sit around and play your
game. An advergame is exactly what it sounds like – a video game thatʼs been
developed with your products in mind. Advergames come in all levels of complexity –
one advergame might just be simple Tetris with an advertising banner across the top of
the screen, while another company with a larger budget might develop an RPG type
game that cleverly involves their products and services while offering the player a
competitive gaming environment.
Advergames are a great avenue to explore if youʼre at all interested in using the very
best of technology to get the message across to your consumers. You also donʼt need
to be very tech savvy in your own regard to get the ball started on advergame
development – a simple search online will produce hundreds of companies who are
willing to help you design your very own advergame. All you need to do is come up with
the idea for it, and let the programmers take care of the rest. Even if youʼre looking for a
more complex advergame, there is likely a storyboard artist who works at advergame
companies who would be more than happy to help you create an advergame of your
Remember, the more compelling your game, the more contact youʼll have with the
customer since theyʼll be inclined to play it longer. Come up with a compelling
advergame and you could have potential customers interacting with your advertisements
10. Mobile Video Brings Video Advertising to Phones
What if you could combine the very best of television advertising with a smartphone?
Many companies are looking into doing just this, by developing what can only be called a
cell phone commercial. The basic tenants of this are exactly what they sound like – a
video clip is sent to a customerʼs cell phone, where they can watch your advertisements
on the screen of the device. Consumers donʼt even have to have smart phones to be
reached via this method of advertising, as even the most basic phones these days have
color screens and are capable of viewing video.
This might leave you scratching your head a bit – how would you get the mobile
commercials to your customers? And since mobile marketing is based so much on an
opt-in system, how could you convince your customers to “opt in” to seeing
advertisements? In general, people dislike commercials on television and radio, so why
would using a mobile phone device make it different?
The thing about mobile video commercials is that they are generally best paired up with
other forms of mobile marketing so you can get the commercial to the consumerʼs
phone. Itʼs true that you just canʼt start spamming the phones of customers with
advertising, even if itʼs the coolest mobile video ever. However, there are certain
methods that you can take to get this information to the customer, and get the customer
to undertake the consumption of mobile video readily.
One way is through the aforementioned QR mobile codes. With this method, the
consumer takes a picture of the mobile code and is then taken to the mobile
advertisement. In this way, the customer “opts in” to receiving the mobile video ad.
Another way to do it is through Bluetooth projection, wherein a Bluetooth hub contacts a
usersʼ cell phone and asks permission to input information onto the device. Should the
customer accept, then the hub transmits the mobile video to them.
If this is a method of advertising that youʼd like to undertake as a startup, it helps to pull
in the advice of the professionals in order to do it appropriately. You donʼt want your
mobile commercial to be any longer than thirty seconds, or you risk annoying the
consumer. There are also specialty editing processes that go into making a mobile
video show up well on a phone and also project good audio.
Mobile commercials can include anything from real-life footage to animation to a straight
up audio track. Itʼs all about how youʼd like to project an image of your company to the
mobile consumer. With the advent of increasingly complex technologies itʼs only right
that the humble television commercial advance as well - and moving onto the mobile
platform is the next step along in visual, multimedia advertising.
11. Get Flashy With Flash Lite
When most people think of advertising, they tend to think in more traditional terms of the
word. This is natural, given that technology has advanced very rapidly in the past ten
years, and most people canʼt keep up with it as much as theyʼd like. While this
technological advance has been going on, however, some things have remained
constant in the world of advertising. Television ads and radio ads, for example, have
remained as a staple of advertising throughout all the technological upheaval that the
last twenty years have been. Aside from ﬁlm and video quality getting better, the actual
tenants of the advertising itself have been the same.
However, when it comes to mobile marketing, itʼs more important than ever to think
outside of the box; given how new all the technology is that surrounds these devices.
When people think “mobile marketing,” they often spend a lot of time wondering the best
ways to convert traditional means of advertising onto a mobile format. While this
certainly has its place and has been done with great gusto – the upswing in mobile
commercials is proof enough of that – there are other ways to advertise speciﬁcally to
mobile phones that donʼt translate over into other devices.
Flash Lite content advertising is one way of doing just that. You might be familiar with
the program Flash that creates animations for computers – Flash Lite is the mobile form
of this art. What many companies are ﬁnding great success in is using Flash Lite to
create animated wallpapers and screensavers for mobile devices and using these to
market their products and services.
Flash Lite content advertising is a great place for startups to begin if theyʼd like to make
a foray into mobile advertising but donʼt have millions of dollars to spend on some of the
more complex ways of doing so. A Flash Lite animation might cost a couple hundred
dollars to produce, but then can be handed out to customers over and over again. Most
who work with Flash Lite content advertising say that itʼs one of the most cost-effective
versions of mobile marketing that is available right now.
Also, consumers are much more likely to enjoy having animated background on their
mobile phones as compared to their desktop or laptop computers. Cell phones are still
seen more as entertainment devices as anything else and consumers are more forgiving
toward devices and apps that might be seen as “distracting” by computer users.
So in the event that you are a startup company looking to enter into mobile marketing
but you donʼt have a limitless budget, consider looking into Flash Lite advertising. Itʼs a
great place to start with mobile marketing that wonʼt break your wallet.
12. Making Mobile Web Count
Many people who own cell phones surf the Internet using them. Smartphones are no
doubt the best arena to be surﬁng the web in, but the truth of the matter is that even the
simplest cell phone these days likely has Internet capabilities. With this in mind,
remember that more and more people are sitting around, stuck in trafﬁc or waiting for
their date to show up, tinkering with the Internet on their phone.
If youʼre a business with a marketing mindset, then this information is doubtlessly
making you wonder how you can best turn this to your advantage insofar as getting your
message across to the consumer is concerned. Having a website in general is one of
the best ways to get yourself out there to the masses, and business websites are all but
considered necessary these days to any business who wishes to get off the ground and
advertise to a wide range of potential clients. But what about clients who are surﬁng on
their cell phones?
The truth of the matter is that no matter how good your site looks on the computer or
how well organized it is, itʼs likely a little awkward for those who are working with mobile
browsers. Regular websites are simply not calibrated to handle mobile browsers, and
the result is often squished graphics and confusing layouts.
What can assist in this matter is a website that is speciﬁcally calibrated for the use of
Internet surfers using mobile phones. These specialty websites are often known as
“WAP” websites, and generally project a truncated version of the companyʼs full website.
WAP websites are a great way to get headlines and multimedia downloads to your
consumers in a mobile format.
Spending the money to develop a website that is speciﬁcally calibrated for a mobile web
browser is another great way for a startup to break into the mobile marketing craze. Lots
of people surf the Internet on their phones, and being able to reach out to these surfers
is a great way to make your mobile marketing dollar stretch farther than with other
methods. Also, if youʼre worried about certain kinds of mobile marketing being too
“intrusive,” having a mobile website is a more latent way to take advantage of mobile
marketing while still getting in on the trend.
In order to ﬁnd people who can help you calibrate your businessʼ mobile website, you
can search online for companies that specialize in “mobile web development.” Those
who do work in this department are different than traditional web designers, so be sure
that you know who youʼre working with and what their capabilities are insofar as mobile
web design is concerned before making a commitment.