Google Webmaster level: all
When it comes to search on mobile devices, users should get the most relevant and timely results, no matter if the information lives on mobile-friendly web pages or apps. As more people use mobile devices to access the internet, our algorithms have to adapt to these usage patterns. In the past, we’ve made updates to ensure a site is configured properly and viewable on modern devices. We’ve made it easier for users to find mobile-friendly web pages and we’ve introduced App Indexing to surface useful content from apps. Today, we’re announcing two important changes to help users discover more mobile-friendly content:
1. More mobile-friendly websites in search results
Starting April 21, we will be expanding our use of mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This change will affect mobile searches in all languages worldwide and will have a significant impact in our search results. Consequently, users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.
To get help with making a mobile-friendly site, check out our guide to mobile-friendly sites. If you’re a webmaster, you can get ready for this change by using the following tools to see how Googlebot views your pages:
- If you want to test a few pages, you can use the Mobile-Friendly Test.
- If you have a site, you can use your Webmaster Tools account to get a full list of mobile usability issues across your site using the Mobile Usability Report.
2. More relevant app content in search results
Starting today, we will begin to use information from indexed apps as a factor in ranking for signed-in users who have the app installed. As a result, we may now surface content from indexed apps more prominently in search. To find out how to implement App Indexing, which allows us to surface this information in search results, have a look at our step-by-step guide on the developer site.
Get the message? Companies with Naples ties among those in spam-texting lawsuits
By AISLING SWIFT
Naples Daily News Sunday, December 9, 2012
NAPLES — Thx 4 ur mssg — Not!
With texting now more prevalent, junk mail has gone from the mailbox and emails to cell phones.
As a result, customers may end up paying extra charges — about 20 cents — for unwanted, repeated and unsolicited texts, with premium texts hitting pocketbooks harder — $1 or more.
That's prompted a spate of spam-texting lawsuits, including a recent class-action complaint targeting Zoom Tan of Naples, which in turn blames a third-party texting service it used for its 40 salons in Florida and New York.
Shaina A. Rutherford, who owns a Bonita Springs landscaping business, amended her September class-action lawsuit in late October after Zoom Tan and Club Texting, which does business as EZ Texting, filed responses denying liability.
"Without authorizing these messages or providing consent to receive these messages, I began to receive texts from Zoom Tan and its marketing agency on a regular basis," Rutherford said of texted spray tan ads that began in 2011.
An answer to Rutherford's suit filed last month by Zoom Tan's attorney, Justin Mazzara of Fort Myers, states that Zoom Tan obtains cell phone numbers "at which a customer consents to receive texts" and its "spam-free" notice tells customers it uses them only for informational purposes, including to alert them to items left behind, new store openings, health news and special events.
New York-based Club Texting filed a motion to dismiss the case last month, saying it's an "intermediary software provider" and Zoom Tan used its software to send the texts.
"By analogy, if someone using TurboTax's software committed tax fraud by misrepresenting their income to the IRS, TurboTax could hardly be considered to have 'made' the misrepresentation to the IRS simply by providing the software that transmitted its users' tax documents," the Club Texting motion said.
Rutherford's attorney, Kenneth Gilman of Bonita Springs, contends Rutherford never gave consent to receive the repeated text ads and that in February 2012, the FCC issued stronger requirements for obtaining express consent that go into effect next year.
"These heightened standards will require companies to obtain prior express written consent before engaging in mass text-message marketing campaigns, such as the campaign at issue in this suit," Gilman said.
* * * * *
Analysts predict mass text blasts will increase because they're an inexpensive, quick and direct form of advertising — targeting hundreds of consumers at once, sometimes for as little as a penny each.
There are 321.7 million cell phone users nationwide and 184.3 billion texts are sent monthly, according to CTIA-The Wireless Association.
The Telephone Consumer Protection Act and FCC prohibit companies from using automated dialing services to send texts without obtaining consent, unless for an emergency.
Under the law, a consumer can seek $500 per unauthorized message or $1,500, triple damages — if they're willful and intentional. The federal Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing (CAN-SPAM) Act also bans unwanted commercial emails sent to cell phones, which often appear as texts.
Texts, called Short Message Service, SMS, and Multimedia Messaging Service MMS, which include audio, videos and photos, are used frequently to target customers due to their 98 percent "open rate" — 98 out of 100 recipients open them — compared with 10 percent for emails, according to California-based marketing company Mogreet.
Because customers opt-in, they give a company permission to text.
"It's probably the best kind of permission marketing you can get," said Mark Cyr, president of Dolphin Global Technology Solutions of Naples, a shared short-code mobile marketing company. "Customers opt in because they want texts. Ninety five to 98 percent are opened in the first four seconds."
It can cost $500 monthly to register a random short code texting number or $1,000 monthly for a custom or vanity texting code, so many small- and medium-sized Naples businesses — such as Jump On Express (JOE), Simply Southern Barbeque and Purely You Spa — use Dolphin Global.
Companies can pay $150 monthly to Dolphin Global to use its short-code number, 97063, enabling customers to opt in to receive texts about services and deals. For example, JOE customers can text JOERIDE to 97063 to opt-in to get a schedule, or they can text JOECLUB for special offers.
"Each text should have an opt-out at the bottom, if they're legitimate," Cyr said.
Due to high response and customer-conversion rates for texts, the return on investment is much higher than for emails, explained Jackie Truong, Mogreet's senior associate marketing manager, who noted that national retailer Charlotte Russe reported its text-message program gets 10 times more response than its email marketing promotions.
* * * * *
To avoid pitfalls, such as class-action lawsuits, business owners must be aware of government regulations and how not to antagonize customers.
Last month, Papa John's Pizza, owned by part-time Naples resident John Schnatter, was hit by a $250 million class-action lawsuit after a federal judge in Seattle certified plaintiffs in a 2010 complaint as a class —allowing anyone who received the texts to get a part of any settlement or verdict.
The lawsuit contends five franchisees sent customers 500,000 unwanted texts to offer deals for pizza, with some receiving 15 in a row — some in the middle of the night.
The franchisees used a mass-messaging service called OnTime4U, which also is a defendant. When the lawsuit was filed, the franchisees stopped using OnTime4U after a Papa John's corporate memo warned that sending unsolicited messages to cell phones "is most likely illegal."
Papa John's plans to appeal.
So far, the heftiest spam texting verdict or settlement involves Jiffy Lube.In August, Heartland Automotive Services, the nation's largest Jiffy Lube franchisee, and TextMarks agreed to pay $47 million to settle a class-action lawsuit involving 2.3 million cell phone users. It didn't admit wrongdoing, but agreed to obtain "informed written consent" for text ads and give the 2.3 million customers a $17.29 certificate to use at Jiffy Lube.
Dell and the Huffington Post also were hit in August by spam texting class-action lawsuits. The Dell lawsuit alleges a computer customer received more than 100 automated calls demanding past due payments, while the online media outlet is accused of sending news updates at all hours, even after the customer revoked consent.
Truong, of marketing firm Mogreet, said businesses are getting accustomed to the regulatory environment for text message marketing.
"Companies like ours have always provided a helping hand because it's best for consumers, advertisers and us," she said. "There are really a few simple rules to follow, but marketers are coming to understand that if they can prove they have the consumer's explicit consent to send messages to them, 90 percent of the suits would go away."
Customer's View of Our Quality Service.
"Technology changes so fast and I can’t thank Dolphin Global enough for helping our business stay ahead of the game. Our new mobile website was just the marketing edge we needed. We are able to put QR codes on all our marketing materials and Ads. Customers can scan our mobile site from their phones and get instant information. They can also book right online from their phones. Thank you Dolphin Global for making our customers lives so much easier and keeping us ahead!"
Jenny Foegen, Sales and Marketing Director, Naples Princess .
Want your business to survive? Have your Website work on a smart phone
Posted: Thursday, June 14, 2012 1:00 am By Derek Gilliam from www.naples.leadaloft.com
As mobile broadband falls into the hands of people all across the world, having your businesses' Website fit onto the small screen of the smart phone is increasingly more important to businesses of all sizes.
The Entrepreneur Society of Naples held its monthly meeting at the Greater Naples Chamber of Commerce Wednesday, where entrepreneurs showed off some of their products and where the main topic of conversation was the importance of mobile Websites.
Mark Cyr, president of Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, took the conversation about mobile usage from global to national, then focused on local.
Cyr started his career in the technology industry in the early '90s, said Marcus Zillman, a co-founder of ESON.
In 2001, Cyr became the vice president of sales for a Czech Republic digital media company, which was in competition with China to manufacture packaged software for U.S. companies, then import the software back into the United States.
“His race was on with China to be the first to import packaged software into the U.S. and he won, until the U.S. dollar dropped in global value,” Zillman said.
With the fall of the dollar, Cyr made his way back into the United States, where he worked with software giants such as Electronic Arts and Activision in the sales of their video games.
When the global recession caused the company he worked for to shut down its U.S. operations, Cyr decided to start his business Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, which specializes in mobile marketing.
“We develop, design and host mobile websites, along with SMS texting programs for small businesses here in Collier County,” Cyr said.
He said that 95 percent of all smart phone users have searched for local businesses using their mobile device, with 61 percent of users calling the business after searching. Here's the kicker -- 59 percent of those that called the business visited the store with 90 percent visiting within 24 hours, he said.
“Mobile is all about instant,” Cyr said.
He said that that on average, if a person used a desktop to search and call a business, it would take a week for them to visit the store.
He said that out of 243 mobile million phones in the U.S., nearly half of them are smart phones. Fifty percent of all local searches are done on a phone so it's critical for all business to look at how their Websites translate onto the mobile devices, he said.
“I ask all my clients to open up their Website on their phone, and ask yourself, ‘Would you do business with you?” he said.
He said a company can do simple things to improve their mobile presence, like making sure their phone number is “clickable.”
If a customer can't instantly connect, in today's society of instant gratification, it's likely that their business will go to a competitor, he said.
Karl Gibbons, chairman of ESON, echoed those thoughts:
“You cannot be in business today and use yesterday's methods and expect to be ahead tomorrow,” he said.
Is Your Company Late to the Mobile Party?
With half of the total U.S. population already accessing the Web through smart phones and tablets, a mobile platform is a necessity.
By ED NASH WSJ April 12, 2012
Web 3.0 isn't coming—it's already here. And it's all about mobile interaction. If your company doesn't have a mobile website—a site specifically designed and coded for each mobile platform—you're already seriously behind the times. The marketplace demands content and the available delivery pipelines are exponentially more diverse and interactive than ever before.
Our businesses compete in a technological environment in which information is coming and going from every direction in all conceivable digital forms. Suddenly, the ability to explore a fully interactive website or a full-length video doesn't require anything more than a small hand-held device. Wireless data delivery is faster and easier than ever, and consumers want what they want right now—whether they are sitting in front of a desktop, riding on a train holding a tablet, or walking down the street, smartphone in hand.
All of these factors make the development and implementation of dedicated mobile websites absolutely critical to success. According to a 2011 report by comScore, fully half of the total population of the U.S. uses mobile media—an incredible 20% increase in a single year.
World-wide, there are 1.2 billion mobile Web users. In the U.S. alone, 25% of users access the Web exclusively through mobile devices, and that number is significantly higher in many other parts of the world, such as 70% in Egypt and 59% in India.
Mobile Web growth stats aren't slowing down either. They'll continue to balloon, just as network availability, access speed, software and hardware devices will continue to revolutionize mobile interaction and ease of use.
So how can a global company survive without a great mobile website? With stats and trends as they are, I'd rather not wait around to find out.
Case in point: A mobile Web solution was recently shown to me by a friend in charge of marketing at a major record label. He had contracted the development of mobile sites for several of their acts, and has been impressed at the potential for a Web platform that is simple, appealing and intuitive. In the not-too-distant past, fans performing a mobile search for their favorite music artist would find themselves on a traditional website that was barely viewable on their hand-held device, slow to load, and nearly impossible to navigate—much less interact with.
Today's Web 3.0 is different—it is fast, easy, clean and interactive. Viewing videos, hearing music, buying products, signing up for email lists, and checking tour dates on a mobile device is now simple, convenient and attractive—the way it should be.
The solutions, despite what you might think, are not expensive. The technology is broadly available and the process of using existing Web elements to "skin" (i.e. optimize) a site for mobile use isn't altogether difficult.
Yet much of the business world remains woefully unprepared. I've heard from more than one large corporation that mobile Web integration is in the works for 2014—no that's not a misprint. Given the fierce competition, I truly hope that these companies can stay in business until then. If they want to survive, they need to bump up the time frame just a bit—like today.
If your company is going to compete in a web-based world, it must be broadly accessible and elegantly intuitive—Steve Jobs taught us that. The technological landscape has changed immeasurably since I started my first business over 20 years ago. In that time, I've learned that change can be very profitable for innovators and early-adopters, or very costly if you're the last to show up to the party. For those who aren't ready for Web 3.0, get your dancing shoes on—the party is already in full swing, and you're late.
Mr. Nash is the president of Altius Management in Nashville, Tenn.
A version of this article appeared April 12, 2012, on page A15 in some U.S. editions of The Wall Street Journal, with the headline: Is Your Company Late to the Mobile Party?.
Dolphin Global Announces New Mobile Marketing Product
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions is pleased to announce the addition of a new mobile marketing product to our mobile lineup. We can create a simple mobile landing page that you connect via a QR Code placed in an ad, in addition to our SMS/texting and mobile website design and hosting products.
A mobile landing page is typically a standalone mobile page that is not integrated into your regular website. With so many of your customers having a Smartphone, it is a way to give life to a two-dimensional ad and to provide an optimized mobile-friendly experience. This is an ideal way for providing discount coupons and/or more information via YouTube videos and images about a product or service you are advertising.
Dolphin Global Tech will design the mobile landing page, host it for 30days or as long as you are running the campaign, and provide you with a unique QR Code for the ads. We also provide each of our clients with the QR code mobile statistics. Our product and service is designed for the small business budget with many pricing options from one landing page to multiple landing pages with volume discounts. For more info on how to integrate a mobile landing page into your marketing and advertising efforts call 239-430-7003
Scan QR code for Sample Landing Page
Why the time for a Business Mobile Website is now!
Your Customers are going mobile. Are you going with them?
Article from the Feb issue of the Southwest Florida Business Today Newspaper
Hearing the words mobile marketing, most small business owners think of iPhone apps, Andriod apps, or mobile websites. They wonder if they need an app to get into mobile marketing. In a previous article, I addressed how small businesses could use third party SMS/texting technologies to reach their mobile customers. In this article, I will talk about the rapidly changing mobile market and the requirement for small businesses to review their need for adding an optimized mobile website (one that fits the small phone screen).
Mobile facts first: Smartphone ownership has more than doubled in the last 24 months. That means that more than 44% of all mobile phone users in the US have a Smartphone as of the end of 2011. That number is accelerating and expected to hit 60% by the end of 2012. That means more than 150 million mobile users in the US will have a Smartphone by the end of this year. When you consider that far more web searching will be done via Smartphones rather than PC desktops by 2013 (Google), the mobile web is rapidly becoming the new area small businesses need to integrate into their overall marketing strategy.
Customers are connecting more with local business on their mobile phone. A whopping 95% of Smartphone users have searched for local information. Moreover, 61% of users call a business after searching and 59% of those visit the location. As well, 90% of these people act within 24 hours (Google – “Understand Smartphone Users”).
So what is the mobile web and how do you determine whether you need a mobile website? The fastest way to determine if a business should add a mobile version of their website is to open their site on a Smartphone to see what their customers are experiencing. If the site does not fit the phone’s small screen and is hard to navigate to find information, then the business needs to consider adding a mobile website.
In addition, if you are using Google Analytics to measure your website traffic, Google added a new feature allowing you to track mobile device activity. This is another way you can see if your website is being viewed often on mobile devices. If you are using a web marketing company to manage your SEO, ask them for the mobile stats.
If a mobile site does not load in three seconds the user will move on to another site, according to Google. Compuware says mobile users expect a mobile experience to be as good as their desktop experience. As well, Compuware research has shown that a bad mobile experience can cost you customers. If they can’t find your location and phone number easily they will move to another site.
After you have determined whether you need a mobile site, there are many things to consider in creating an effective mobile site and avoiding missed opportunities. Here are three key elements that you need to consider to provide a successful mobile experience for your customer. First, your users are busy and short on time so make the experience fast; create a site that loads quickly providing the features and content the users need most. Second, no one likes to be confused. Simplify the navigation by using seven links or less per page of navigation. Third, add calls-to-action like the business phone number, link to Google maps for your location, etc. After the site is built make sure you have the redirect codes added to your desktop site so users searching for your site on their mobile phone will be redirected to your mobile site first. Also, always offer a way for the users to click to go to your business’s full website.
As you can tell, the mobile Smartphone market is changing very quickly and your customers are moving into this market at lightning speed. In less than 24 months Smartphones have grown from 18% of the mobile market to 44% with 51% of Smartphone users now female. In a future article I will address another aspect of the mobile market that will be affecting the small business mobile commerce. If your business sells products in an e-commerce model today, you will probably be building an m-commerce mobile site in the not-too-distant future.
This is a very creative time for mobile marketing and, in a lot of ways, a game changer for some small businesses in the way they market and connect with their customers, while providing exciting opportunities for small businesses to increase sales. Your customers are going mobile-are you going to be going with them? For more information call Dolphin Global Tech at 239-430-7003 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org www.dolphinglobaltech.com
Mobile will play pivotal role in 2012 political campaigns
January 10, 2012
A string of Obama's recent SMS program
In the 2008 presidential elections, President Obama’s campaign was applauded by mobile marketers for its use of SMS and mobile Web. But with an increase in consumer adoption and more companies incorporating mobile in the past three years, how will political candidates use the channel in the upcoming 2012 elections?
Text messaging is still the most effective way for political candidates to reach a broad group of consumers, but video, applications and advertising will also play an important part in the 2012 elections. Additionally, political candidates will need to combine their mobile efforts with other marketing channels including social media, broadcast and Web for 2012.
“Voters will demand more with real-time engagement in the 2012 elections, whether it is breaking news, polling information or an insider perspective from the campaign,” said Scott Goodstein, CEO of Revolution Messaging, Washington.
“Mobile is growing up and the fad is wearing off with people that want real-time information via their devices,” he said.
Mobile is slated to take over a bigger part of ad dollars for political candidates in 2012 after marketers saw the impact that mobile had in 2008.
However, now marketers have access to other channels that were not as widespread in 2008.
“Whether it is through in-app, MMS, a mobile landing page or a YouTube clip, the ability to watch a video through mobile makes a direct connection between candidates and voters,” Mr. Goodstein said.
Video is a key component to a political campaigns with debates and speeches, making mobile a natural extension for candidates for voters to visually see candidates while on the go.
Mr. Goodstein, who worked on Obama’s election campaign, says that the campaign wanted to use more video in 2008 but was held back with technology advances.
For example, smartphone penetration has increased dramatically since the last presidential election and has created larger data plans and better video quality for consumers.
In addition to video, applications will also play a more strategic role in political campaigns this year.
Mobile campaigns are expected to especially use more location-based services that tie political messages to real-world places where voters can do something to support a candidate.
From getting contact information, finding supporters or locating a nearby voter stations, apps can help political marketers target a large group of voters and make a campaign more tailored for specific voters to help educate them.
Mobile apps can also be used to help drive donations by political candidates.
For example, Calyp, which is a loyalty and rewards app, is currently being by used by Republican candidate Rick Perry to let users donate via the app. Users can also share Rick Perry content with their friends and family via social media.
“A mobile political campaign is not just about short text messages anymore,” said Andrew Levi, founder/CEO of Calyp, Dallas.
“Mobile needs to be used as part of a full, creative campaign with interactive videos and social media to target a mass number of consumers,” he said.
Here is the in-app endorsement that Rick Perry is using on the Calyp app
Talk via text
Despite the rapid growth in smartphone ownership, SMS reigns as the channel with the broadest reach, which is especially important for political candidates looking to reach a mass amount of voters.
However with the increased use of mobile marketing, consumers expect more when opting into a SMS program and candidates will need to make sure their text message programs use mobile more strategically in the 2012 elections.
“With political campaigns, you are talking about trying to market to people in mid-America with a higher percentage of SMS usage,” said Derek Johnson, CEO of Tatango, Seattle.
Tatango has worked on the SMS programs of Massachusetts Senator Scott Brown and Washington State Senator Patty Brown and believes that SMS is beyond the stages of being a vessel for communicating.
Obama's text messages lead users to a mobile Web site where they can donate and buy merchandise
Consumers are familiar with mobile Web and therefore expect to get a message with a direct way for them to act on.
For example, Obama’s most recent text messages include links to mobile Web sites where users can donate and learn about upcoming campaign events.
MMS can also help political candidates bolster their campaigns.
“The key to text-message marketing is getting people engaged and having the opportunity to provide a rich media experience that gathers voters’ attentions and grabs a piece of emotional ground for them,” said Steven Gray, CEO of iLoop, San Jose, CA.
Text message programs can also be effectively used to interact with voters at events and build a mobile database.
“Mobile is a phenomenal tool for citizens to speak out about issues they are passionate about,” said Amanda Moskowitz, general manager of Mobile Commons, New York.
“For political candidates, mobile messaging is a powerful way to grow a base of supporters from their media and events," she said.
"Candidates can then affect important outcomes through mobile messaging with these groups, such as rallying people for more local events, motivating them to get out the vote, prompting a donation and many other forms of effective engagement."
Another big area of mobile growth for 2012 will be in mobile advertising, specifically with geotargeting.
Location-based mobile advertising lets candidates target voters in areas that they might need an extra push, such as battleground states.
For example, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachman recently used geotargeted ads at the Minnesota State Fair that educated users on a proposed tax increase on food found inside the state fair.
Voters can expect to see similar mobile initiatives from political candidates in 2012 looking to drive a specific, targeted message to a group of consumers by location.
“Geo-targeting is the magic bullet for political campaigns because it enables them to focus their ad spending only in the markets where there is heated competition,” said Alistair Goodman, CEO of Placecast, San Francisco.
“We can expect to see a number of new uses of mobile technology - from geo-triggered alerts when a candidate is speaking in the area to social services connecting like-minded campaign supporters when they are near each other,” he said.
“Political campaigns are consistently at the leading edge of using new digital marketing tools for reaching their audiences and spending on mobile this time around will be both substantial and highly valuable.”
CBS exec: SMS more valuable than QR codes
By Lauren Johnson September 14, 2011 Article from Mobile Marketing Dailey
One of CBS' new SMS-enabled ads
Broadcast network CBS has opted for SMS calls to action as opposed to QR codes within its print advertisements to draw in primetime viewers. CBS is creating buzz for its fall lineup that includes five new series with SMS calls to action, which let consumers learn more about the TV shows. The ads bridge mobile, video and print.
“Everyone has phones that support SMS,” said Philippe Browning, vice president of advertising and operations at CBS Mobile, New York. “QR codes have an added barrier with a download and although we are interested in it and have experimented with the technology, it doesn’t have the same value of a text," he said.
Print ads promoting the network’s new series are placed in People, US Weekly, Entertainment Weekly and Maxim magazine. The ads are targeted towards specific demographics depending on which publication they appear in, but People magazine was the only title to feature all five ads. For example, the upcoming CBS’ series "How to be a Gentleman," which is a comedy about a quirky friendship between two men, will likely appear in Maxim.
Consumers can send keywords to short codes to learn more about the shows Each ad has a call to action that prompts consumers to text a specific keyword to a short code. Users can then follow a link to a video clip with a teaser to the show. “Three out of the five ads give users a 60-second video, which is a substantial amount of time,” said Anne O’Grady, executive vice president of marketing at CBS, New York.
“Print is wonderful, but to take it to the next level, people actually need to see something additional,” she said.
With this campaign, CBS was interested in using SMS because of its simple format that draws in any consumer with a mobile phone. “We wanted to do something that everyone could interact with,” Ms. O’Grady said.
SMS is particularly useful for print advertisements because it makes a static medium more interactive by connecting readers to digital content. Also, there is no need to download an application. “We try to use as many forms of marketing that we can get our hands on to reach our consumers,” Ms. O’Grady said. “We wanted to use short codes because it’s an easy way to incorporate mobile and give users additional content,” she said.
Making the trek
CBS’ SMS-enabled ads are the latest string of mobile developments for the company.
The company launched an iPad companion in the past few weeks that lets viewers learn more about the shows and casts. CBS also recently created an iPad app that plugged Star Trek fans into the beloved series (see story).
“CBS is actively working with all of its distribution channels to mobile, whether it’s with print, Web, broadcast or physical mediums,” Mr. Browning said
SMS/TEXTING in Small Business Mobile Marketing Strategy
Article in the July issue of Southwest Florida Business Today
When we hear the words mobile marketing, most small business owners think iPhone apps, Andriod apps, or mobile websites. They wonder if they need an app to get into mobile marketing. At some point a small business may need an app or a mobile website, but until then there are other mobile marketing technologies available to the small business. In this article, I will address the third party SMS/texting technologies that are available and a couple of ways small businesses or nonprofits can effectively connect to their most valuable customers, and even create new ones.
Mobile factoids first: In 2011, 7 trillion SMS messages will be sent worldwide from 4.2 billion mobile subscribers. A whopping 93% of the US population has a mobile phone (293M subscribers) with 97% having the ability to send and receive text messages. Smartphone users (with the ability to access the Internet) represent 30% of the mobile users and growing fast. Most of these messages, (95%) are opened within 4 minutes. SMS marketing is permission marketing at its best--you can’t send out messages unless your customers asked for them.
There are two primary ways that a small business can use SMS. The first is by having your customer opt-in with a special keyword on his phone, thereby becoming a member of your business’s SMS database. This model allows you to send text messages or information to them weekly, usually not sending more than eight messages per month.
Restaurants were the early adopters of this model of texting, sending out coupons, weekly discounts or running contests. Over the last 24 months however, many other types of businesses and organizations have been using this SMS model, for example healthcare, nonprofits, and entertainment.
The State of Rhode Island Department of Health, for example, is running a stop smoking campaign that sends out inspirational text messages to members to help them quit smoking. On an national level to reduce infant mortality rates Pfizer and Johnson and Johnson recently partnered with the US government to provide SMS health alerts free for pregnant women and new moms, focusing on those moms who were the at the highest risk. They have over 75,000 members and this number is growing daily.
The second way to use SMS is to have the keyword a response-only word, so when your customer or potential customer opts-in, they will be sent a text only and not captured in a mobile database. This method is used to tag signage or newspaper/ magazine ads to create an interactive quality. In all cases you can send one text out or several over a period of time.
A good market for this second application of SMS is in the real estate market. Let’s say you are driving past a property that you are interested in, but there is no open house; however, you see that there is a text code on the For Sale sign. You simply use your mobile phone to opt in and you instantaneously receive, for example, three detailed texts: a YouTube video of the home’s interior, thorough specifications and floor plan information, and the agent’s contact details. It’s a way to give a flat advertisement extra dimension and added life. In addition to signage the text code could be added to advertisements and online listings. Other applications are billboard signage or digital signs in malls advertising a product or service along with a text code which enables users to get more information.
There are many other ways you can apply SMS/texting, the most common for everyone is SMS voting currently used for TV shows like “Dancing with the Stars,” or for running surveys after an event. But I will save those applications for a future article. This is a very creative time for SMS applications and new ones are emerging every day. For more information call Dolphin Global Tech at 239-430-7003.
N.A.P.L.E.S. GROUP BIG EVENT:
Join me and fellow members of N.A.P.L.E.S. November 11, 2010 and share an evening with one of the country's leading entrepreneurs and philanthropists, Thomas Golisano owner of payroll processor giant Paychex and founder of the B. Thomas Golisano Foundation.
This will be the B2B event of the year in SW FL! The networking opportunities available are endless.
For more information to go http://naplesgroup.net or call Jenny Foegen on (239) 649 275 or text: NGEVENTS to 97063 (normal rates apply)
White Paper: The Role of SMS in Biz Communication.pdf
A great white paper overview, by mBlox, of SMS/Texting business communications applications for many markets, i.e. mobile banking, fincancial services, call centers, healthcare, travel, transportation, M ticketing and retail.
Dolphin Global Technology Joins Local Business Networking Group.
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, LLC joined the N.A.P.L.E.S. Group, the Naples Area Professional League of Executive Services. The N.A.P.L.E.S. Group is a networking organization made up of small businesses in the Naples Florida area. Each business membership represents a unique type of business. To learn more click on N.A.P.L.E.S.
Redesign and launch of new website for Youth Haven
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, LLC, a Naples, Florida, Internet and mobile web provider, announced today the redesign and launch of a new website for Youth Haven in Naples, Florida, http://www.youthhaven.net . Youth Haven is the provider of Collier County's only residential home for abused, abandoned, and neglected children as well as a number of other services such as family support, parenting education, abuse and homelessness prevention, intervention services for families living in crisis situations, and individual and group mental health counseling for children and families in the community. Youth Haven has been in continuous operation since 1972, providing services to over 1,600 children and family members each year.
The Youth Haven site is running on a software CMS platform developed by Savvy Software, a Portsmouth, New Hampshire, company that is the premier U.S. Internet Content Management Software with hundreds of sites running their software nationally—http://www.besavvy.com. This powerful CMS platform allows for multiple instant user updates to the Youth Haven site without the involvement of a tech professional.
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions provides Internet and mobile web design and development services to companies http://www.dolphinglobaltech.com. Contact Mark Cyr at 239-430-7003 or mailto:email@example.com for further information.
Mobile Company Partners with a Leading CMS Software Company
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, LLC, a Naples, Florida, company that develops mobile phone applications and mobile web conversions, announced today they have signed a sales agreement to represent Savvy Software, a Portsmouth, New Hampshire, company that is the premier US Internet web CMS, Content Management Software.
"This is very exciting because many of our clients have asked for complete redesign of their Internet website before we convert their site to a mobile website….now we can provide a complete one-stop service with one of the US leading CMS Internet companies. Demand is rapidly increasing for mobile website conversion as more smart phones enter the market and companies want their customers to be able to view their website fully optimized for their phone", says Mark Cyr, President of Dolphin Global Technology.
"We are looking forward to working with Dolphin Global Technology. Delivering web content on mobile devices is the next major advance in Internet technology. Having a partner with the experience of Dolphin in mobile technology is a huge plus for our content management solution and customers", says Bill Savoie, President of Savvy Software.
Savvy Software is a privately held corporation based in Portsmouth, NH. The idea for Savvy Content Manager grew out of work developing database driven web sites for clients that wanted the ability to update their own web sites without having to use HTML, FTP or any other technologies used in web development. Its award winning Savvy Content Manager is used by more than 500 organizations worldwide. The company was founded in 1996. Web: www.besavvy.com
Dolphin Global Technologies Solutions provides digital communication consulting and development services for companies that want to move their business digitally into the mobile phone market. Contact: 239-430-7003 e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
A Czech Republic mobile phone company enters the US market.
Dolphin Global Technology Solutions, a Naples based digital communication solutions company, recently signed an exclusive partnership agreement with MicroMedia, a Czech Republic developer and aggregator of content for mobile phones, to provide mobile solutions for the US market.
MicroMedia started developing mobile products and applications in 2002. They are a custom developer for converting Internet websites to mobile websites, including iPhone and Android. They can convert any type of website to fit all the different cell phone formats. Once converted, they can develop and manage advertising, discount coupons, ticket sales, etc. - the applications are endless.
MicroMedia has the advanced technology to manage mobile advertising and marketing campaigns for mobile sites on an extensive IT infrastructure and framework that manages content hosting and customer traffic analysis. The content management software was developed by MicroMedia to handle all Internet capable mobile devices in the US and is designed for real time customer access to all the traffic data, helping that the customer gain better control of their advertising dollar.
“We are very excited to partner with MicroMedia and offer their advanced technology and service here in the US. Europe has been way ahead of the US in mobile technologi