For Mobile Marketing To Work, Users Must Opt In, Stakeholder Says

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Written by Dana Sanchez

Many mobile markets in both developed and developing markets are approaching saturation, and consumers have clear expectations regarding the way mobile marketing campaigns should be run, says Nadia Gonzalez, vice president for mobile marketing at Gemalto, in an ITWeb report.

Compared to other media channels such as radio and TV, the real power of mobile lies in the fact that it is immediate, timely and contextual, Gonzalez said. Allowing people to make their own choices and opt in for marketers’ messages are the first critical steps to fostering a relationship built on trust.

Mobile phones are interactive, they’re always on, and mobile appears to be the perfect medium to run marketing campaigns. But Gonzalez urges caution, saying mobile phones are personal devices that people are attached to. Running mass-market, untargeted marketing campaigns through this medium could easily be perceived as too intrusive by the end-user and abusive mass marketing campaigns could spoil the channel, she said.

“Our research shows that consumers have clear expectations regarding the way mobile marketing campaigns should be run,” Gonzalez said.

Gemalto is an Amsterdam-based international digital security company providing secure personal devices such as smart cards, software applications and managed services.

Allowing people to make their own choices and opt-in for marketers’ messages are the first critical steps to fostering a relationship built on trust, Gonzalez said. It ensures the brand message is delivered to an audience of opted-in consumers who genuinely want to hear it. It provides the cornerstone of a strategy that delivers reach, interactivity and high response rates, she said.

“It is also important for companies to identify themselves from the get-go, and be transparent about who they are and what they want,” she told ITWeb. “Messaging is a conversation and a relationship. You would not let a stranger into your home and the same holds true for brand communications on mobile.”

If those golden rules are respected, Gonzalez said most adults would be won over by mobile marketing. “Successful mobile marketing is about meeting customers’ requirements for relevant messages and implementing strategies that put the end user in control of the conversation.”

Many mobile markets are reaching saturation, Gonzalez said. “With current growth rates, there will be more mobile subscriptions than people on earth well before the end of the decade. But this hardly represents a tremendous growth story because mobile operators in all markets also face a rapid decline in the average revenue per user.”

With these challenges, mobile operators have two options, Gonzalez said. They can get more value from existing customers, or win over more customers from rival operators. Operators are in an enviable position, well equipped to deliver what their subscribers want and appreciate, she said, according to ITWeb.


About Dana Sanchez

Dana Sanchez was born in South Africa and is a U.S. citizen. After working in advertising, she went back to school and earned a master's degree in journalism from the University of South Florida. As a business writer, she won regional and national writing awards. As editor of a daily newspaper, she coordinated staff writers, freelancers and photographers in the fast-paced environment of daily news. Dana was an editor at Moguldom Media Group for four years, helping to build and manage a team of staff and freelance writers. She works now on Moguldom.com for Nubai Ventures. A long-distance hiker and cyclist, she writes about the business of technology.