Gonca Telli Yamamoto. Mobilized Marketing and the Consumer: Technological Developments and Challenges. Hershey, PA: Business Science Reference, 2010.
This section overviews marketing and the impacts of technology on marketing, and presents the current situation where certain traditional rules of marketing are not valid anymore and certain new efforts are required. Also the mechanism of exploration is taken into consideration before going into the details of mobile marketing. Mobile marketing is discussed with its narrow and wide meanings.
A great development has been experienced through approximately the last 20 years of mobile phones, and these devices have turned into significant marketing devices. Not only mobile phones, but also computers converge with mobile, and many different devices such as mp3 players and video players are also mobilized. The convergence of computers with mobile devices makes new devices more functional. It is now possible to influence the target mass in an efficient and measurable manner by using mobile devices individually or in a classical marketing mix.
The section on the features of mobile marketing provides the details of the features that differentiate mobile marketing from conventional marketing devices. Mobile devices which are turned into marketing devices are discussed. The development of mobile marketing is evaluated with the mobile marketing concept and mobile phone device, and mobile phone line marketing concepts. After a brief definition of the concepts, the characteristics of mobile marketing are presented. Advantages such as individuality, directness and reliability of mobile marketing are considered and mobile marketing models are inspected. This chapter ends with the SWOT Analysis of mobile marketing based on literature screening.
Marketing, Technology, and Present Situation
Marketing is the total of efforts aiming to meet human needs and desires. Global marketing has always been influenced by technological developments. For example, similar to the way railways transformed products and services from local to national and international, and thus contributed to the development of marketing and the globalization of the marketing environment concept, the reinforced concrete technology brought great changes to urbanization and structuring and triggered both movable and immovable property markets; other technologies also create their unique impacts on the markets.
New technologies have not only changed the lives of people, but they have also significantly changed business practices (Yamamoto & Telli, 2005). Every new technology brings a new dimension to the marketing concept and its interpretations with respect to both product and service. Developments in computer technologies have directed social life towards technology unexpectedly and, mobilization right afterwards has further accelerated such changes and new interpretations. The created mobile technologies enable using the marketing elements in different ways.
It is clear that e-commerce created radical changes on marketing systems and accelerated such developments before mobile development. Sheth and Sisodia (1999) indicated a change in society as they expressed the radical change in the content of marketing together with the expansion of e-commerce. At the end of the ‘90s, computers developed at a faster pace than mobile phones. In the later period, however, mobile phones developed much faster than computers with regard to their features and functions.
According to Sheth and Sisodia (1999), the development of electronic commerce caused a transformation in society and various points of twist occurred in the evolution of social and commercial change as a result of the transformation. With the mentioned change, sales, advertising, distribution and the promotional styles of conventional marketing cannot even create a sufficient influence, let alone a major one.
The application of conventional marketing rules is getting more difficult as the environment is getting more complicated. International networks of commerce, created in the globalization-oriented market strategies with painstaking efforts, high costs and trained labor force, transformed into new systems through Internet and mobile devices, and provided an inexpensive, simple and fast relationship between the producer and the consumer. There are almost no limitations with regard to the number of manufacturers the consumer can refer to, and literarily, surfing is possible among the product and service options of organizations on technological networks.
Due to these extensive means, differentiation became a point that should be carefully dwelled upon at every point from the beginning of launching the product to marketing and afterwards because products and services are gradually becoming more similar. In order to deliver the differences of similar products/ services to customers, differentiation on the promotional instruments should be obtained first. One of the most important promotional materials is advertising. For example, at present digital advertisements have turned window shops into live marketing and promotional instruments, and mobile phones can also be used as a channel which can be accessed at any time and individually. Digital advertisements turn color, light and sound games and effects into brighter and more appealing and more entertaining form; thus making it more effective. However, in addition to providing differentiation, this and other similar promotional oriented approaches have also become easily imitable. On the other hand, the Internet placed an important role in this differentiation in terms of communication and sales; the developed web sites and internet sales have caused new business opportunities to appear.
Brand new opportunities will also appear as a result of Internet access from mobile phones. After the exchange of corporate and personal e-mails from any point where mobile phones can be connected to the Internet became possible, it has become possible to give a more “online” direction to marketing. Digital systems have undertaken missions beyond being a device only, and gained a multi-functional status where hardware, software and services are compiled together.
Actually, new technological instruments led to a shift even beyond “online”. All sectors and sectorial companies serving as a mobile content technology developer, an application service provider (ASP) or similar roles are supported using variable data with new technology and software. They also introduce new systems and new means of marketing.
Customers, the most important agents of marketing, on the one hand deliver their knowledge to the system, and on the other hand they become more conscious by the information and documents circulating in the system. Customers can now be informed about anything related with products and services very easily. Even, innovation which is not attractively presented by a manufacturer is rapidly replaced by a substitute who gains advantage in this way, and an environment in favor of the customer is developed in terms of reaching the maximum level of information. The easily convinced and fooled customer has gone and instead, very conscious customers with many alternatives have appeared. On account of both corporate technological developments and satisfaction of the customer’s requirement, it has been required to evaluate the existing situation which should also include mobile environments from a marketing perspective. Therefore, we can say that when a company enters into an environment of competition, it cannot reach its actual performance without making true use of mobile devices. As a result, the issue of mobile marketing gained importance and new strategies and tactics appeared with the questioning of the basic concepts related with mobile marketing.
Developing mobile instruments have more functional structures compared to the Internet or television. Therefore, there is a situation beyond competition between these communication devices and those which can only be used at certain locations. In this sense, mobile phones and equipments support a very different marketing approach based on integrated communication in marketing. Mobile phones also have the required features to perform the functions of the Internet and television in parallel to them. With other devices and components (for example, loudspeaker or screen) attached to mobile phones, the uses of devices such as TV, music player, radio can be replaced and their functions can be provided to large masses.
In social and individual approaches, increasing demand by raising the saturation point also causes the expectations in the market to increase and this approach is influential in changing marketing structures.
The Descovery Mechanism
People have great responsibilities in this world. Everybody may be created equal, but some go into more different searches and make various efforts to facilitate life on earth and to enable and guide to the development of the humanity. Discovery, with the most general meaning, is to find something new or to realize something new. The efforts of such people can also be defined as approaching life with a kind of discovery mechanism. In fact, the human being comes face to face with this discovery mechanism as soon as he or she is born. Some of them are things that are seen and known in this world, while some others can be considered as unknown and mysterious things. Some of the unknown and mysterious things are revealed with inventions.
In addition to research and development activities, inventor entrepreneurship activities have also become more preferable. For example, the combination of academic researches with applied researches during the industrial revolution has led to an industry and university cooperation approach. Also in the new period, formations in which cooperation could be much faster and individual participants can create different pools with open-ended points or environments of ideas will accelerate the creativity mechanism.
In the present situation, international companies are expanding their influence and adding new dimensions to their differentiational efforts through mutual and cross agreements on patents, licenses and know-how. Here, both the mechanisms of new device development and the exploration of their users’ characteristics are dealt with.
Mobile communication and the innovations brought by that means in a sense is the rediscovery of the human being and carry relationships to different dimensions, and engage a different understanding of the social network. However, it is highly probable that depth of thinking may be lost and philosophical shallowness may appear in the lives which are filled with momentary information which are structured in order to meet the daily requirements only. Studies are required on how to overcome that.
The Mobile Marketing Definition
From the point of reaching the customer, mobile marketing is defined as marketing activities related with the corporation, product, service, idea, action and persons, and where customers or potential customers are reached in remote places by mobile phones, palmtop computers and similar devices suitable for remote and wireless communication. At present, marketing efforts with various forms of data such as SMS messages, bluetooth messages, video trailers etc. have developed. Mobile marketing is also expressed with other terms such as m-marketing, mob-marketing, and m-commerce and these terms are most of the time used as intertwined.
With a narrower scope, mobile marketing can be defined as the process of realizing marketing campaigns through using the mobile environment (DMA, 2005). Mobile marketing can be realized through the integration of mobile devices into marketing strategies. Besides, this definition can be evaluated as the realization of advertising campaigns via mobile devices. Nevertheless, the addition of mobile devices to commonly used methods should only be considered as the beginning.
From the marketing communication aspect, the Mobile Marketing Association (2006, p. 22) defines mobile marketing as “marketing which uses wireless media as an instrument and which can provide integrated delivery and directly response process through a cross media marketing communication program.” Of course, the scope of this definition is wider than the foregoing because it includes delivery to the customer or the use of media as an instrument. However, this view requires benefitting from other media instruments rather than just a mobile device. Probably, this may be true for the beginning stage. However, it should not be forgotten that mobile marketing turns into a total instrument per se after the individualized environment turns into a habitude.
Leppäniemi & Karjaluoto (2007) exerts the definition of Mobile Marketing Association in 2006 as being the integration of mobile media in the cross media marketing communication program and its adoption for bilateral use. The understanding of cross media publishing is the publication of the same content, which is news and photographs, in more than one channel and thus making them more profitable (Arikan, 2006). Cross media marketing communication is considered as the integral communication expected to be realized between the media elements such as TV, radio, published and printed media, and the Internet and the mobile service providers. Nevertheless, mobile marketing is an amorphous form, which exceeds the definition and also covers and changes concepts such as entertainment, health, and social life, and presents new differences into life.
Although mobile marketing was initially considered as a supporting activity for existing marketing activities of mass communication instruments such as billboard and TV, it should be considered as a brand new system that hits the target by guiding the customer’s actions, triggering the customer and directly presenting innovations as well as due to covering individualism, not mass. Mobile marketing can be considered as the realization of marketing activities that are required to be realized directly with the individual via mobile instruments, and the formation of the systems in accordance. Mobile marketing is a method of marketing that benefits from mobile technology in order to activate the target mass through personal messages.
Mobile marketing has now become remarkable with its interesting practices in sales, payment, advertising, control and marketing management. Although there is not much evidence regarding the effectiveness of mobile marketing yet, marketers have begun to spend more serious amounts of money on mobile media. As a determinant factor in this regard, it simplifies the organizations’ search for better marketing investments due to the continuously changing marketing communication environment (Lep-päniemi & Karjaluoto, 2007) because marketing activities already made via existing systems such as TV, radio and the Internet are mostly prevented by inhibitions developed by audiences (zapping, blocking, etc.) and even ignored.
Mobile marketing is affected by the developments of mobile technologies. An important point in the development of mobile technologies is that mobile technologies are based on customer satisfaction and customer information. This situation develops in a different way than the interrupted structure: visits or calls from time to time or from the habits of land phone use because on account of mobilization, a highly interactive environment has been created between people and mobile devices. This highly interactive environment, of course, has certain advantages and disadvantages.
According to Peni (2007) in terms of promoting mobile marketing, products and/or brands should be advertised and promoted via various instruments of mobile phone technology such as SMS, MMS or video streaming. However, this definition is almost the same as that of mobile advertising.
The Internet and mobile environment create an “alternative channel”. The interest of those who are interested in these channels is rapidly increasing. Because these environments can provide a direct, face to face interaction with customers. Mobile communication hardware, which is always kept by individuals, provides very important benefits to marketers.
Mobile Devices Transforming Into Marketing Instruments
It is possible to say that mobile phones have developed sharply in approximately 20 years since their entry into our lives. Initially considered only as an alternative to the land phone, mobile phones received an unexpected interest as we have also said earlier, and turned into a limb of the users in time. The number of mobile phones is increasing day by day as these devices have transformed so as to provide various services such as SMS, photography, entertainment, or banking services as complementary to each other, or sometimes as totally different functions. In addition to mobile phones, computers are also approaching to the mobile state and many different devices such as the mp3 players and video players are becoming mobile. Computers also become more functional as they become more mobile.
On the other hand, elements such as PDAs and portable GPS devices have exceeded the promotional dimension of marketing and they provide outstanding benefits on planning, supply and distribution. Knowing the location of a product or a truck in the world enables an exact planning of the future movements of the product or the activities related with that product, and so, the processes of the supply chain can be followed exactly. These devices have especially been very useful for sales, marketing and logistics companies. This situation, leading to the planning and production of mass tailor made products, provides a different alternative for which marketers should prepare themselves.
With the rapidly increasing mobile phone use in the world, interest towards its employment for marketing purposes is also rising. Due to their properties of being easily used even in places without an Internet infrastructure, mobile phones create an influence on a wider area and mass than the Internet. By dint of mobility, it has become easier to follow up on the efficiency of the marketing activities of brands. Owing to the mobile “call to action” applications in classical marketing campaigns, the healthy measurement of a campaign and the impact on the selected communication channel can be made. In addition to being influential in classical marketing structures, these net measurements may increase the rates of reaching customer satisfaction targets easily through the correct use of customer orientation in marketing. It is now possible to reach the target mass in an effective and measurable way by using it either on its own or in the classical marketing mix.
Mobile marketing has gradually becames very important in the world. In addition to the development in technology, the “pleasant” marketing communication between the brand and the consumer also has a role on the basis of this development. Here, a freer, more individual preference-based and personal communication has a wider place.
After being discovered by fast moving consumer goods producers initially, mobile marketing is now also expanding into other sectors all over the world very rapidly. The reason is to find a way of reaching the consumer in the fastest way possible. This effect will reach very different points when the aspect of payment is also added.
The Development of Mobile Marketing
Mobile marketing employs various technologies such as SMS, MMS, WAP and video streaming. Mobile devices have quite various functions, changing from the simplest telephone to the most enhanced mini-computer. These devices are the main instruments of mobile marketing. The first entry of mobile marketing into our lives was with the SMS advertisements created on the mobile line when mobile emerged as a new channel. They also began to be used for certain attempts of various services provided to expand their services through music download, jingle download, and screensaver download. Then, they were supported with mobile-related campaigns and accelerated mobile phone sales; on the other hand, they caused the formation of very different functions addressed to the customer because of the competitive environment. Therefore, the mobile marketing concept and mobile phone device (product) and mobile phone line marketing concepts continued supporting each other in the first stage because service providers work in cooperation with mobile phone producers. Therefore, if the question “which one” is asked, mobile marketing emerges as a wide scope approach that can expand from many different points.
As also mentioned earlier, many technologies such as SMS, EMS, MMS, mobile e-mail, LBS (Location Based Services), WI-FI, video streaming and broadcasting with peculiar features, target mass and different marketing scenarios may reach consumers within mobile marketing.
Among the most interesting campaigns with positive outcomes are those with easily modifiable scenarios such as promotions, advertisements and sponsored games, texted barcode and discount coupons, products reminding the brand and brand logos, operator logo, screensaver, ringtone and free games, which provide financial support to the customer and involve the customer in the environment. Among these scenarios, the game scenario is expected to develop gradually.
In addition to the Internet, which is based on local use and yet also used in mobile marketing, mobile devices and telephones are regarded as the most convenient devices in terms of a direct, interactive and targeted communication of an organization with its customers any time and anywhere, even on the move.
As the new technologies are introduced into the economy and rapidly advance in the market, new labor force profiles arise and in this way, the employees’ education, information, skills, behaviors and attitudes are required to be re-organized according to the new order. Companies evaluate the data they obtain by using information systems and feel the necessity for a more convenient structuring and entrance into new researches; they take into account the forms of behavior of their competitors and customers and rapidly revise their supply chains and identify new marketing strategies with the data they obtain, and try to integrate in the global world. The basing of business management to a process-based thinking requires the use of information systems as an indispensable preliminary condition as they provide attaining the factors of information, skills, attitudes and decision making in a short time. So, corporations begin to act more coherently with the contribution of information systems in their marketing functions, management and organizational decisions.
Under the light of them, mobile marketing develops its peculiar areas of use owing to new technologies, and it can offer a means such as communication and entertainment to its customers altogether, and it draws the attention with its favorable fruits of a new marketing style that can make use of the marketing information systems.
Marketing practices and its sub-functions are affected by the developments in the new generation technologies and new data networks, and thus, they face very serious changes. In the next period, the efforts to form correct mobile marketing strategies are expected to become prominent and important.
Through mobilization, the density of customer-producer interaction increases and it brings in very different applications that were not known before. Here, the clear uses of technological issues in the previous periods also steps in. For example, concepts such as data-based and permission marketing have become suitable for use in the most efficient way. Because the demands and requirements of the consumer can be much more easily monitored and identified with them. Facing a totally new consumer mass, it will be impossible for companies to ignore mobile marketing and act without it in the next 10 years.
The Sides of Mobile Marketing
There are many interacting sides in mobile marketing (see Table 1). In mobile marketing, the main sides are the buyer and the seller. The buyer is the side that obtains a virtual product or service itself or information required for the buyer to evaluate the product through a mobile channel. The seller is the party who presents and sells the product or service based on the demands and needs of the buyer via a mobile channel. The seller organization or person may not necessarily be always presenting its own products. Here, the producers also enter into the line.
Service suppliers provide the channel that enables transferring the mobile service to the buyer. These are the organizations that can transmit the desired messages and create the interaction between the buyer and the seller. Content developers are the people or organizations who produce and evaluate the information that guides the seller and service suppliers by interpreting the information obtained from the customers in a suitable manner on a customer basis. These are the organizations that regulate the activities for virtual presentation and promotion of the product or service.
Insurance and transportation companies are the organizations that provide a safe product exchange between the buyer and the seller during mobile shopping. Information technology companies enable the advancement and effectuation of existing technologies and they create the structures of device, instrument, system, process, etc. which could meet mobile demands. Financial organizations such as banks, etc. provide the financial systems required for the safe exchange of payments, loans, monetary amounts, etc. during mobile shopping. They are also the organizations which personal payment responsibility is transferred to within the framework of law.
|Table 1. Mobile marketing sides|
|Content Managers and Developers||Advertising and Media Agencies|
|Insurance Companies||Transportation Companies|
|Information technology companies||Financial organizations|
|Electronic / mobile notaries||Non-Governmental Organizations|
|Universities and R&D institutions||Other Public Organizations|
|Other Educational Organizations||Approval Bodies|
|Supra-national organizations||Legal Bodies|
Electronic notaries are the organizations that receive and store the records of agreements and contracts made via mobile devices within the framework of law. Non-governmental organizations and bodies may activate social factors which influence mobile marketing. In transactions via mobile communication channels, this is the widest authorization body on legal issues that are related with the government with legal regulations binding on the parties of transactions. Other public organizations are the public organizations which influence mobile marketing in a similar fashion to non-governmental organizations. These are the bodies that can ensure social welfare and supervise the system, and events and situations in the system.
Universities are the organizations that strengthen the career with developments regarding mobile communication and marketing by producing scientific and experimental information, and that can create a qualified labor force for this market. Universities are also the guiding and directing organizations that can produce projects and supervise the implementations of projects on mobile communication and marketing. R&D organizations are the scientific organizations that can work independently and carry out transactions with regard to development of mobile devices and products, and which should receive support from the social environment and the state. Other educational organizations are those which can convey information related with the use of mobile devices to every level of society.
Approval bodies are those which hold mobile authorities in hand and permit the use of such authorities (e-signature, etc.). Legal organizations monitor legal regulations related with mobile communication and marketing, and make decisions on penal and legal measures if required (courts, experts, etc). Supra-national organizations are the organizations that undertake international legal obligations and regulations that should be formed in international mobile communication and marketing issues, and possess the power to impose required sanctions. Such an organization can be formed beyond all legal systems and with the representatives of each country.
Characteristics of Mobile Marketing
The main properties of mobile marketing include advantages brought by the devices, the created channels, and from the point of the individual or corporation, the personality, directness, immediate closeness, reliability, measurability, etc. These characteristics are mostly related with evaluations from the customer’s perspective.
Openwave.com lists the characteristics of mobile marketing as follows:
- Personal: Mobile telephones and other mobile devices are personal elements. There are generally not lent to anyone even to family members. Elements such as logo, screensaver, ring tone, login password are chosen by the user. At present, these telephones are regarded as a kind of identity card and their numbers are becoming identical with the identity of the person. This provides marketers with unequal opportunities in terms of selection of content and address of their messages to the customer. For example, special applications can only be made to the names of mobile phone owners.
- Direct: The communication here is person to person or brand to person. There are not any elements such as press, distributor or retailer between the customer and the company. The user may be influenced by anything the marketer says. In mobile marketing, direct services can be provided to the customer without any intermediaries between the customer and the organization, operator or marketer.
- Immediate or almost immediate: The buyer receives the presented message to the target market within minutes and even seconds depending on the number of messages sent from the network and the status of the network. The message is sent and it is received by the user. It ensures the delivery of the right message to the right person at the right time. The receiver may read the message immediately or leave it to another time suitable for him or her or read it again anytime, if he or she wants to. Therefore, the acquisition of the message at the time it is sent, and the possibility of immediate and/or re-reading is higher than all other channels.
- Reliable: It is possible to obtain information from service providers on how and when a message is received. It can increase the comprehensive cost of the campaigns via these mobile lines because the marketer organization is also paying a cost of communication in order to learn its conclusion. In such a campaign, if measuring recognition is desired, then it is also included in the scope of the campaign. In short, the status of the marketing activity can be solidified with measurable and countable data. The undesired download of disturbing and continuous programs as spam from the mobile channel without the consent of the customer is more difficult compared to Internet and it requires permission. Therefore, it may also support and increase the reliability of the things presented to the user.
- Bi-directional: Wireless communication is also bi-directional similar to that in Internet. Similar to the possibility of talking to customers and listening to them, it is also possible to approach the customers with various presentations. Even, in this way, the customers may establish a relationship with the organization or the brands of the product through direct and personal interaction.
- Measurable: Clear and solid measurements are obtained in the campaigns via mobile devices. So, it is possible to obtain beneficial and special information through performed tracking. Measuring the rate and time of the responses to the performed campaigns are possible. Thanks to measurability, the situation of the message or marketing strategies can be evaluated and organized according to the situation.
- Emphasizes Individuality in Mass Marketing: Technically, mobile marketing can help organizations reach mass audiences. Such campaigns may be expensive if they are organized with unclear audiences and may fail to provide a sufficient benefit. Contacting the entire mass without determining a target or dividing the market means neglecting personal communication channels. Instead, mobile campaigns require the presentation of personally convincing messages rather than those addressing to a wide mass of audience.
- Not Just an Advertising Instrument: As it is well known, marketing covers a wider area than advertising. Mobile marketing brings differentiation not only because of presenting introductory messages, but also in terms of building relationships with customers, creating a dialog and providing services to its customers.
- Not Just a Marketing Instrument: From time to time, it may turn into a media of actual social interactions beyond marketing, and also turn social interactions into a marketing instrument.
- Easy Integration with Other Media: One of the most important capabilities of mobile marketing is easy integration with other media in terms of concept or implementation. Marketing efforts can be transferred more effectively when media campaign instruments are used with integrity. Even, in order to reach the best results in mobile marketing, conventional channels may also be collocated. Besides the transfer of audio, visual and written presentations to other media with mobile instruments may be tremendously fast and easy.
- Suitable for Complex Offers: From the perspective of 2G and 2.5 G users, it appears that marketing with SMS is suitable for technical structure. SMS does not contain pictures and it is limited to 160 characters. This limit, also automatically determines the attention period of the audience. If the message is longer than 160 characters, then it can coherently be divided into two and maintain its meaning. Therefore, thinking short should be learned. However, these restrictions will be resolved with 3G technologies and mobile devices will turn into complete multimedia devices per se.
- Personal Privacy: People are sensitive and protective with regard to their personal privacies. The receipt of an undesired commercial message may prevent that brand from reaching the customer forever. It expresses the necessity of realizing mobile communication upon permission. There is always a better option for the attractive rather than the repulsive. Besides, being accused of SPIT (Spam over Internet Telephony) should be prevented. This issue will be considered in detail later.
Besides, from the point of realized marketing practices, mobile marketing benefits from virtual environments. It reaches and serves the customer in a virtual environment from the time of purchase to the delivery to the consumer, and it can also be interactively tracked down by the customer at every stage. It creates a magical environment that uses virtuality to present reality. It depends on the effective use of structures in marketing such as the supply chain. It enables the conversion of elements to be stored on the database as effective data.
Mobile marketing can be used to obtain the following (Pousttchi & Wiedemann 2006):
- To create brand awareness
- To change brand image
- To promote sales
- To bring in brand loyalty
- To create customer database
- To spread word from mouth to mouth
In addition to them, it also contributes to the creation of other elements such as social environment, entertainment, and reliability.
According to Sultan and Rohm (2005, p. 89), one of the leading points in mobile marketing is creating a value for brand-customer relationships and interacting in a manner which is certainly not coercive. Customers are willing to feel something that has informative or entertaining value for them. Information obtained by customers from mobile marketers should be workable for the customer (Peni, 2007).
The communication devices in mobile marketing reduce the decision making processes and turn them into the processes based on fast thinking and fast moving. They change the processes related with delivery and influence the customer’s opinion and purchasing tendencies associated with the product. Therefore, with its new features presented during organization and coordination, it supports adjustments according to speed.
Unlike the Internet, mobile communication devices create a stronger body for the person to communicate with the organizations whose titles and identities are known, and with whom the person agrees to communicate, with other services added to Internet services.
Advantages Provided by Mobile Marketing
Mobile marketing provides serious advantages in terms of marketing. Considering the subject from strategic planning to policies, it is apparent that measurement, one of the most important characteristics of mobile marketing, will seriously influence strategic plans. Because the feature of measurability may enable a careful follow up of the performed mobile campaign. As it is possible to measure the response rate and time of the performed campaign or activities, it facilitates the realization of long term plans.
Even if commerce is made strategically on a global scale, information from mobile marketing activities may enable making correct decisions. With the merging of mobile data with other data in the past in corporate plans and policies, easy and healthy decisions can be taken. Because, following the requests and behaviors of the customers and acting according to their actual requirements will enable easy selection in terms of both organizations and people.
As an important part of mobile marketing, mobile communication begins from the process before production and provides the information and data entry that could be influential in the entire marketing process. Under the guidance of obtained information and data, production and supply planning may easily be realized. So, such plans may create significant cost advantages in production and supply. On the other hand, with the addition of features such as Galileo and GPS to the logistics aspect, determining the place of a product during its transportation and warehousing becomes possible. Mobile marketing with an effect that improves the process and increases the quality reaches its aim through benefitting from the features that support various them such as just in time and total quality systems in production.
Mobile marketing eliminates time limitations on shopping. It is possible for the customer to do the required thing or place the order to buy a product in 24 hours a day and seven days a week. In other words, mobile marketing provides an entire shopping flexibility.
As mobile marketing is a new marketing channel that uses mobile devices and technologies unlike classical marketing, it appears with different options for customers. It presents new lifestyles into users in terms of shopping environment and social environment with sometimes SMS and sometimes bluetooth or other features.
With regard to products and services, mobile marketing both reaches the customer at the most suitable time, and it also encompasses a kind of training function from the aspect of information the customer will regard concerning products and services for the conscious use of them. Thanks to that, the advantages of reaching customers with more transparent, effective and correct efforts can be obtained.
The organizations which understand the importance of mobile marketing take advantage of personality in mobility and initiate effective marketing. This, in turn, provides precedence to companies in competition. It is even possible to show customers some aggressive campaigns to prevent shifting of customers to competitors as beneficial for them, and to continuously attract customers to their own products and services. Briefly, owing to mobile marketing, the applications that mean hitting the bull’s eye can be made.
In the present time, when the elements such as entertainment, work, information, and education have closely approached each other, the aim is to draw out activities that merge or enable their parallel functioning.
Mobile marketing personalized activities such as marketing, communication and advertising for the customer in a very short time. Besides, with the inclusion of payment systems to mobile marketing, all payment activities, which were previously realized with smart cards, can now be moved on mobile and people will be able to shop even without carrying any money on themselves.
On the other hand, the synchronous exchange of money and products also creates an almost full time change in the finance market especially where the exchange of big amounts of money is required. With such advantages, new changes may occur even in the contract structures; new legal arrangements can be made which would lead to the occurrence of e-document or m-document providing organizations in this respect or to the use of mobile devices and saving time and applications as a result.
The organizations that can act in accordance with customers may also organize their promotional activities and especially discount coupons in a manner to address to the actual requirements of the customers. The tailoring of corporate discounts and promotions to the target mass also provides another advantage with its financial benefit for the customer.
It can also help in the organization of the marketing activities that could be accommodated according to changing generations.
Corporations may also obtain certain advantages by using mobile marketing as a supporting instrument together with their former habits and styles along certain conventional marketing activities.
Mobile Marketing Models
Mobile marketing required developing different marketing models as a result of the changing environment with the influence of mobile marketing technology. Like e-marketing, mobile marketing also followed a similar development to those of the classical marketing models. However, as models exceeding the classical ones were developed in e-marketing, new models will naturally be developed also in m-marketing. Mobile marketing models begin from mobile communications and develop until mobile shopping systems and enable the creation of different systems. With regard to advertising, one of the most important functions of marketing, (models funded from advertising) and mobile purchasing models for purchasing activities are also in question. Such models are evaluated according to the structures oriented towards corporate fund or income provision.
For example, the mobile purchasing model Mobile B2B is for business to business mobile electronic shopping. Similar to all of the properties of B2B, there is also mobile support available at any point of the world. A buyer or seller, who could not be reached under normal conditions, can be reached this way. Through these transactions, buyers and sellers can easily reach each other in mobile communication environments without any physical barriers. The standard and frequently repeating commercial transactions are automated in the electronic environment and so, new values are obtained. Corporate time and labor revenue are realized and the costs are reduced with the integration of side services such as shipment, insurance and financing in this environment. Besides, the retrospective follow up and reporting of concluded transactions are also possible on time easily and free of mistakes.
In the mobile advertising model, the income is obtained from banners, sponsorships, advertisements and other marketing methods.
Models may sharply differ in terms of application, and the organizations and sectors that develop the model are based on multilateral thinking. Such models may be considered oriented towards various services such as mobile sales, mobile health, mobile finance, mobile education or mobile entertainment. These models are developed in different ways with respect to the properties and attributes of the services, and they are obliged to respond to the demand which may occur in any aspect and to the requests and requirements of the customers.
For example, in the mobile shopping model, a supply chain management close to full-controlled model is possible. A piece of the structure and application after the customer’s order are listed in the following steps. The customer places the order in the first step via the mobile device. The received order is transferred to the corporate data base, and also the bill of order is transmitted to the relevant units. The data base is primarily focused on two functions. The first one of these functions is the required orders for the transformation of data to services and the second one is the analyses of the data. Data analysis is especially important for long term customer monitoring, evaluation of preferences and characteristics, as well as the segregation of the characteristics.
If the requested product is available on hand, then its compliance with the customer’s order is checked and the necessary preparations for the delivery to the customer are made if it is suitable for delivery. Here, the products to be delivered are again organized according to the preferences of the customer. For example, if the customer checks the fast delivery option, then the cargo service can be arranged accordingly. Besides, the preparations also include the packaging of the product, its invoicing, and the preparation of the return document if it is rejected by the customer, which is to state the reasons, the entry and exit transactions and the warehouse order. Then, the product is shipped via postal service or cargo. The information of the cargo can be transmitted to the customer’s mobile device beginning from the time the products are shipped. The final stage is the realization of delivery at the time and place indicated and requested by the customer.
If the requested product is not available, or if it does not match with the required properties with a mobile or online order message, the supplier’s feedback message and information on the product and time of supply can be presented. If the customer requests fast delivery options, then information from the supplier for delivery to the customer should be obtained. The information obtained from the supplier can be transmitted to the customer. After the product is supplied, the conditions of the third step apply exactly as they are.
New marketing models will also arise according to new technological advancements to be introduced in mobile communication. For example, mobile store models and shopping systems have not been distributed on the social scale yet, and these types of models will be used more effectively with 3G and in the period afterwards. In these structures with the properties of online stores, the customer will be able to browse via mobile device and place an order. However, the native models, bluetooth marketing or LBS are used at present. At present, the existing models are the web sites that work with news, publication, information or music, etc. Purchases with the facilities provided by telephone operators and by subscription or prepaid system, the existence of these types of services depended on such revenues.
The creation of multi-channel platforms similar to those in e-commerce may be considered as another model in mobile marketing. At these platforms, all of the channels such as the Internet call center, mobile devices, kiosks etc. are used altogether and the marketing activities of these channels support each other.
Another mobile marketing model is the modular model created by using the dynamics arising from the inherent structure of the mobile marketing model itself. In this model, each activity and application is associated and specialized between different modules and turned into the most suitable form in terms of applications. In the modular system, in addition to creating the independent functions of wireless communication agents such as service suppliers, application and content providers, the project groups which create and develop private systems for new entrepreneurs are also employed.
Mobile marketing can also be evaluated as push- and pull-based. In push-based mobile marketing, the content is sent by the advertiser or marketer to a mobile device generally once. Here, there is not a content requested with a subscription system. In push-based mobile marketing, the content is provided by voice, SMS messages, e-mail, MMS messages, TV or radio messages, picture messages, researches and similar advertisements and elements (MMA, 2006). In pull-based mobile marketing, the content is sent to a registered subscriber upon his or her request and generally once (MMA, 2006). When the customer requests a mobile coupon or responds to marketing communication, it can be considered as an example for pull-based marketing.
A SWOT Analysis On Mobile Marketing
According to the SWOT Analysis based on the literature screening of Peni (2007) with regard to mobile marketing, the basic characteristics such as interaction, access to customer, and personalization are listed among the strong aspects of mobile marketing. The weak aspects are: lack of research on the issue and low amount of technological cooperation and sharing of information. The threats related with the issue are the factors from the point of both the user and the intermediary such as difficulties in practice, old habits and the lack of legal infrastructure as well as other environmental factors. Opportunities are mainly prevalence all over the world, the creation of independent media and time, increasing value of information, and changing values of entertainment causing the formation of new consumer behaviors and interaction (see Table 2).
|Table 2. Mobile marketing SWOT based on literature screening-analysis|
|(Source: Peni, 2007, p. 7)|
Anytime, anywhere access to customer
Complementary with other media or complements mobile marketing attempts of other media
Can be presented to individuals, not masses
One to one dialogue with the customers
Means of multimedia
Ability to deliver high speed messages
Being fast and effective
Few number of researches on the subject
Few number of scientific cooperation and sharing of knowledge on the subject
Value of knowledge
Value of entertainment
Being a piece of the entire marketing strategy
Prevalence of mobile devices all over the world
Developed technology for devices
Higher interaction with customers
Customers’ acquaintance to work with mobile devices
A closer brand relation
Sharing of cost with customers (viral marketing)
Place and time in independent media
Increasing use of mobile devices
Increasing number of multimedia mobile phones
Consumer laziness (old habits, behaviors and images)
Regarding as Spam
Concerns of Secrecy
Technological Barriers (delivery processes, screen size etc)
Difficulties in practice
Resistance to change (The desire to preserve the former system by marketing and those who serve in marketing)
Dependence on permission (Permission should be obtained in order to access customer and sent messages)
Requirement of other media for its development