1061_1Currently, many of the top brands try to figure out what to do with mobile marketing. Some establish mobile sites, just like it happened 10 years ago when online became mainstream.

Those sites initially were static, then they became dynamic and the content was updated on a regular basis, and finally came transactional/interactive websites. The same is happening with mobile sites, which means many out there are still static, some are dynamic, and we also start seeing those which allow transactional interaction with the respective companies.

Nobody expects mobile marketing to unlock the potential of the mobile medium, if executed as traditional marketing just in a different channel. However, there is nothing wrong with it as the mobile phone is without doubt a great channel to connect to customers. And indeed many businesses are already quite successful in their efforts to make use of the new instruments, exemplified here with the catering industry.

How can more be gained from mobile marketing?

The best a restaurant can do to increase its sales is firstly to reward their regular customers and secondly to make occasional guests to regular ones. This much is clear.
The question that arises is how to get this done when the daily business keeps you already extremely busy and you can't manage to become an advertising specialist overnight?

For the hotel and catering industry mobile marketing is a cost effective target-group approach. It provides a direct reach to the customer, personalization, interactivity, user friendliness, and rapid implementation to name the advantages briefly. In addition, the areas of applications for the catering trade are far reaching. Consider for example that there is a quiet evening in your restaurant and you have the tool to change this within minutes by sending a mobile marketing campaign to your customers? Reaching them all over the city with your message just when they are thinking about what's for dinner today? Or for each reservation you send a confirmation via SMS? Or you might want to boost the pleasant anticipation, point out a special offer, or your starters menu with your mobile SMS activities?

Another option would be to send coupons to selected guests that can be redeemed on quiet evenings. Your guests will carry this coupon around on their cell phone and be constantly reminded of you. It is of no surprise that the success rate of mobile coupons is on an average pretty high especially in restaurants and cafes. So-called mobile coupons have a redemption rate of 5-15% compared to 1% for conventional paper coupons.
Another way of using mobile marketing in your restaurant, bistro, or cafe can be to prompte special events. Communicate for instance movie nights, theme nights, live music and other special activities. You can even accept reservations directly via SMS. Indeed, a number of business analysts agree that mobile marketing or bulk SMS is the advertising medium of the future as they are used for a number of goals, which are essentially the same as with the traditional non-mobile channels:

  • Drive and maintain brand equity and loyalty
  • Generate attention for products or services
  • Generate sales leads
  • Gain customer insights

Just take a look at the young generation today that unanimously agrees that their phone is the most important device they possess. We are really talking here about the communication device of the future that has sheer inexhaustible opportunities on offer.

How easy is it to implement mobile marketing into the daily business' life?

Of course, you can send mobile marketing campaigns from your mobile phone. But, this is not only expensive, it is time consuming as well due to the many contacts. There is a sea of software around that is taking over the mass sending of SMS, like e.g. XGate, RouteSms, or GraphicMail to name just a few. All are providing its customers with compact, user-friendly e-mail and mobile marketing solutions that include a lot of advantages for companies. At a glance, benefits are usually:

  • That the so-called hosted service require no installation or advanced computer skills;
  • That you can easily import within seconds already existing address books from other applications such as Outlook or Gmail,
  • Mobile Sender ID: You select the number that shall appear as the sender's SMS. Your mobile marketing campaigns are sent as if sent from this number and the recipient can reply directly to this number, without the need to constantly check your computer.
  • The prices of bulk SMS are significantly lower than those of network providers.
  • There is a statistics function available to analyze the sent campaign success rate, etc.

Whatever you are planning, always remember that your activities should be part of an orchestrated effort in the mobile space.


By Daniela La Marca