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3 Do’s and Don’ts of Mobile Marketing to Customers

- January 12, 2011 - 2 Comments

Mobile is the most overhyped thing of all time.

So says Alex Dunsdson who leads M&C Saatchi Strategy Group on development of portable content initiatives for business.

The self-professed “mobile realist” led a session for partners at Partner Velocity last December called Mobile is the “Next Frontier of Marketing — How Can You Get Started without Falling Off the Edge?” (Full session replay available on the Partner Velocity site.)

There are more smart phones sold now than PCs, he says. What’s more, a staggering 90% of people have their mobile phones within one meter of themselves at all times.

So how do you leverage that opportunity to use mobile to market to your customers? We chatted with Alex to find out his thoughts and learn some mobile do’s and don’ts.

What else did he say? Here are 3 mobile marketing tips he shared.

Tip #1: Remember That Mobile is Very Personal

Alex noted that most people report losing their mobile phone within four hours and their wallet within 28 hours. He  conducted an experiment during the session by asking attendees to pass their phone to person on their left. Looking around the room, most people were visibly disturbed and worried when a stranger was holding their phone. One person said that giving up his phone for that short experiment was like losing an appendage.

So collect your customers’ mobile numbers, but remember: when you’re using mobile to market to customers, it’s important to get their permission first. Otherwise, it’s spamming.

Tip #2: Make It Fun, Make It Easy

In one case study, Alex shared how Intel used mobile to get over 1000 leads in four hours at last year’s CES using Foursquare. Intel asked attendees to check in at their booth with Foursquare and they received a message back saying: “Since you’re so close, come to the Upload Lounge at Intel.” (See image to the left.) They gave rewards like coffee for checking in.

Another way to market to customers at trade shows is to “QR” them.

Trade shows are notorious for generating tons of paper, but using a QR code (see image to the right) allow users to download a free smart phone app that you use to take a picture of the QR code. The app decodes the QR code and can take you to a video, to a product sheet, or

any other info you want them to have.

Tip # 3: Make Your Site Mobile Friendly

Alex’s advice is to not make it too busy when designing a mobile site. If you look at eBay’s mobile site, he notes that there is no horizontal scrolling.

Another reason your site should be optimized for mobile: “view on mobile” is the third-most clicked link when included in promotional emails.

Alex’s Other Quick Mobile Tips:

– Don’t spray and pray
– Do put yourself in your customers’ shoes (ask yourself how you would you react.)
– Don’t’ assume one size fits all
– Do think about the size of the screen?
– Do start!

What other mobile tips do you have? Have you used mobile to successfully market to customers? We want to hear your stories.


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  1. Hi, Carol. Thanks for reading! Alex's blog can be found here: You may also try the Mobile Marketing Association for more information and best practices.

  2. These are awesome tips! Does Alex Dunsdson have a blog or any location where I can get more information on Mobile For Marketing?