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How (& Why) to Break into Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing is so popular that it’s gone mainstream—or at least gotten mainstream media coverage. Today’s Boston Globe features an article on mobile marketing (via MarketingVOX). I think it gets at the heart of the issue, accurately explaining why it’s such an attractive and controversial potential advertising platform, in these quotations:

“We’re calling the phone ‘the brand in your hand’ — you’re never more than a foot away from it, 24 hours a day,” said Fareena Sultan, associate professor of marketing at Northeastern University’s College of Business Administration. The challenge, Sultan said, will be to produce an advertisement for the phone “that excites the person holding it.”

Also, “the phone is a device that can be with the consumer . . . right there in the aisle. That’s called the moment of truth,” said John Hadl, a strategic advisor for major brand marketers including Procter & Gamble Co.

“It’s a very, very private space. People have a tremendous emotional attachment; we’ve got to be really careful,” Sultan said. “If you think spam is bad, it’s really, really bad on your cellphone.”

“We’re trying to be very prudent,” said Steve Krom, vice president and general manager for Cingular in New England. “The big question is: Are users going to find it acceptable to see advertisements and pay for service, too?”

Think you’re ready to get into mobile marketing? Read/WriteWeb is also writing about mobile marketing today, with a 55-piece mobile marketing tool kit, designed to provide early adopters with the tools they need. These include

  • Developers’ mobile tools
  • Sites to test your site’s mobile readiness
  • Mobile site builders
  • Mobile search engines
  • Local sites
  • Mobile portals (including ones from our favorite portals and mobile providers)
  • Mobile social networks
  • Mobile visual search (matching your cell phone camera’s pictures)
  • Mobile video search
  • Mobile downloads
  • Real estate search
  • Mobile map apps

In addition to these tools, the Boston Globe touts two other services especially for mobile advertisers:

uLocate Communications Inc. . . . plans to unveil mobile advertising that uses global positioning technology to send ads to phone users in specific locations later this year. . . . MobileLime . . . turns the phone into a mobile membership card that receives coupons and store alerts from grocery stores and fast-food restaurants.

Now you’re all set to get into mobile marketing—if you think consumers are really ready.