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Posts Tagged ‘smartphones’

Why Mobile Marketing needs to be a part of your mix – Now.

If it’s not currently a part of your company’s marketing mix, start now. Start thinking about how you will stay ahead of your competitors by reaching the increasing number of smartphones & tablets being carried by your target audience. Is your website optimized for mobile? How about your blog? Is there a customized application you could develop that would provide additional value? How can mobile marketing be integrated into your existing marketing mix?

“Consumers are 25% more likely to respond to advertising, (print, billboards, bus shelters, etc) if they are able to do so via a mobile response” ~ BusinessWorld

“Based on 74 campaigns during Q4 2009, and with a huge 69,854 respondents, the research revealed that on average, 22% were aware of a mobile advert — leading to a purchase intent rate of 5.4%” ~ Brandchannel

Together, these two data points indicate that consumers are not only responding favourably to mobile advertising from an awareness standpoint, but that this technology is translating into genuine purchase intent and sales. It comes down to making it easy for your customers to buy your product/service. Each step in between your customer and that customer purchasing your product decreases the likelihood that they will buy from you.

So, what can you do now to improve your mobile marketing efforts and increase your conversion rates in print and traditional advertising? Try playing to a person’s curiosity by adding a QR code to your ad. Link it to a customized mobile landing page. Provide them with a means of discovering what makes your product or services, awesome. QR Codes are very robust and can be used to store links to websites, videos, audio files, images and even SMS messages, so think about how you could integrate these into your existing advertisements.

Recently, we ran a small, local promotion designed to raise awareness for QR codes, local businesses and most importantly, to have some fun with mobile marketing & communications! Over the course of 5 days, we hid prize baskets at 5 different businesses across the city. Using social media (Twitter, facebook and a customized blog), we shared a QR Code clue as to where the prize basket was hiding that day. The first person to arrive at the secret location, claimed the prize. We also installed ‘digital ballot boxes’ at each location in order to reward subsequent visitors for playing along. This ballot entered them into a draw to win some amazing grand prizes including, VISA gift cards and a Blu-Ray player.

After the promotion, we analyzed the data and developed a report that outlined the success of the mobile campaign and how similar campaigns could work in the future. Here are the results of the case study:

QR code

QR Code Project

We learned that not only is awareness for QR codes high, integrating them into existing marketing and advertising activities is an excellent way to add a layer of interactivity on top of your ads.

Adoption of smartphones will increase exponentially in the next few years so you need to begin allocating resources to mobile marketing. Email me: matt@oryxadvertising.com to chat about how we can work together to develop a successful mobile marketing strategy for your business. For starters:

  • K.I.S.S. Keep It Simple, SIMPLE. It’s not just about making a QR code link to your Web page or your Facebook page. Even if those pages are optimized for mobile, chances are the content isn’t. Mobile content needs to be easy to access, to appreciate and to easy to share. If it fails the user on any one of those counts, it won’t create the reaction you’re hoping for.
  • See. Scan. See you later. I’m a big fan of integrating QR Codes into existing activities because taking a picture is faster and easier than looking up a twitter handle or keying in a URL into your mobile browser. Other technologies will arrive making things even easier (See NFC), but right now, QR Codes are king as they’re readily available & easy to use.
  • Let context dictate content. Make sure your mobile content is useful to consumers in the same location you expect them to experience it in. Don’t offer them videos in a location where they won’t be able to watch them right away.
  • We’re still early in the cycle. People won’t buy anything or fill out long-winded forms via your mobile site. It’s just another touch point in a series of consumer touch points designed to keep your message consistent. Great mobile sites serve up awesome content and create a means for your customers to connect with your brand through their desired platform – later if they wish. Your mobile site is a powerful medium for you to wow your audience, raise awareness and keep your brand top of mind for when your customers are ready to buy.

Content from list derived from “How to blend mobile marketing with Social Media” article. Credit: Jesse Stanchak, June 15, 2011

NFC – How Near-Field Communications Will Change Marketing & Mobile Commerce

May 27, 2011 4 comments

UPDATE: June 3, 2011 – check out the Digital Marketing Lounge Podcast where we discuss NFC, mobile commerce and the Global Smartphone market.

I wanted to write a post about mobile commerce because I think that this is something that will explode over the next two years with Near Field Communication platforms and the introduction of new NFC applications such as Square, Google Wallet & Google Offers.

If you’re not familiar with NFC – it’s a set of short-range wireless technologies, typically requiring a distance of 4 cm or less. NFC always involves an initiator and a target; the initiator actively generates an RF field that can power a passive target. This enables NFC targets to take very simple form factors such as tags, stickers, key fobs, or cards that do not require batteries. What this means is you can basically ‘tap’ your smartphone on an NFC enabled tag to access information, make payments, access loyalty cards, send money to your friend, visit a website, and so much more.

What I find interesting and exciting are the potential uses for NFC & the opportunities to revolutionize point of sale marketing and mobile commerce that are on the horizon.

Mobile Commerce:

Yesterday, Google announced Google Wallet. In partnership with Mastercard, Sprint, Citi and First Data, Google Wallet will allow you to effectively make your phone your wallet. It will store your existing plastic cards (Loyalty cards, debit cards, credit cards, driver’s licenses, etc.) securely, privately and wirelessly on your NFC enabled smartphone.

Example:

You have just finished an incredible meal at a restaurant you frequent that accepts Airmiles. The server brings your bill to the table which looks like a regular cheque. You notice the NFC logo on the bottom of the receipt There is an NFC sticker on the bill that will make it recognizable by your smartphone. Near Field Communication Logo

You tap the logo with your smartphone and a payment application is launched that allows you select how you would like to pay. You select your MasterCard and your Google Wallet also identifies that this restaurant not only accepts Airmiles, but that you also have a loyalty card that will save you 10% off of your bill. You confirm your method of payment and the use of your Airmiles and loyalty cards, add a tip and your done.

Point of Sale Marketing:

When NFC is used at point of sale, consumers will be able to tap a product with their smartphone and access information, take part in promotions, contests, ‘like’ the product on facebook, view reviews and testimonials and access product videos. You’ll find NFC tags in print, on posters, POS, on products, transit shelters and so much more. Everything will be instantly trackable and measurable. Opt-ins to newsletters, promotions and adding leads to back end systems will happen in real time. Most of all, consumers will be able to check-in at merchant retailers, access coupons, sign up for newsletters, donate a dollar to a charity – all through an NFC enabled smartphone.

For merchants, businesses will deploy NFC technologies to accept payments, make it easy for their customers to browse, compare and buy products while in store and offer loyalty discounts and rewards.

Other Exciting Uses for Near Field Communication

  • NFC tags on bus shelters that display bus schedules in real-time when tapped
  • Boarding passes for mass transit (Air travel, train, bus, etc.)
  • Mobile ticketing – Check-in to concerts and sporting events by tapping your smartphone
  • Audio tours of museums or historical walking tours of cities
  • Keyless entry for your vehicle or home
  • Exchanging business cards & contact information by tapping two NFC enabled smartphones together
  • Exchanging money between people (Shawn, you still owe me $20).
The way you interact with retail brands is about to change and your smartphone is fast becoming the #1 thing that you can’t leave your home without. What are your thoughts on NFC, Google Wallet and mobile commerce?

Virtual Insanity – Augmented Reality

May 6, 2011 6 comments

Updated June 8, 2011:

Remember when AR was all about little black-and-white codes that made pretty little animations play on your webcam? It seemed like a fun trick back then, and a few brands (Lego, best of all, and maybe Ray-Ban for an honorable mention) used it to create new ways to digest their products or play simple games.

Actually, there was very little ‘reality’ being augmented with those. But now that the concept has matured, we’re starting to see a very different AR come to life. With your phone’s camera becoming the input device, apps are popping up that let you view a building in your city and find out if there is available office space for rent in it, make newspapers, magazines and outdoor imagery come to life, get translation on the fly or see a person’s social profile as they pass you on the street.

~Why Augmented Reality is Poised to Change Marketing, Sam Ewen, mashable, June 8, 2011

If the term ‘Augmented Reality’ causes you to raise your left eyebrow, fear not. I’ll provide you with quick definition of this technology, discuss where it all began, how it’s being used now, and discuss some futuristic thoughts on how it might evolve over the next 12-36 months.

Augmented Reality (AR) is a term for a live direct or an indirect view of a physical, real-world environment whose elements are augmented bycomputer-generated sensory input, such as sound or graphics. It is related to a more general concept called mediated reality, in which a view of reality is modified (possibly even diminished rather than augmented) by a computer. As a result, the technology functions by enhancing one’s current perception of reality. By contrast, virtual reality replaces the real world with a simulated one.

AR is not new, but it is in it’s infancy. In its’ simplest form, AR can be representative of the last time you google’d a product while standing in an isle of a store. It’s also seen in sports – AR is displayed as the yellow first down line that you see on your TV when watching your favourite NFL team play football.

First Down Line

Augmented reality has appeared in Advertising as well. Holding this Mini ad up to your computer or smartphone’s webcam/camera which activates a 3D augmented reality image of the actual vehicle adding an cool and innovative dynamic to traditional print advertising.

Mini Augmented Reality

There are also some very cool Augmented Reality overlays that you can experience using your smartphone’s browser & camera application. This example from layer shows information from hotels, restaurants and coffee shops that have ‘simply’ overlayed information on top of a map application:

Finally, the future. Some argue (with good reason) that we are in the ‘1994 of the internet’ in terms of the potential of Augmented Reality as a source of augmented commerce and information. I would like to agree. The greatest barriers to mass adoption of Augmented Reality are the killer applications that don’t yet exist. It could represent an entire media channel, advertising platform and information resource for anyone willing to invest. Think about standing on the balcony of your friend’s condo in downtown Toronto armed with your AR equipped smartphone. You pan over the skyline and information about those buildings is being displayed on your smartphone’s screen in real time. Hotel logos, rates, links to websites become visible across the landscape. An airplane enters your view – and AR relays the flight data, carrier information, destination, TOA directly to your screen. You pan across the landscape to a hole in the ground for a new condo development and a 3D image of what that building will look like when complete is transposed directly on your screen. Finally, you pan your view to over the Rogers Center and immediately, you find out that the Jays are playing right now, leading the Yankees 7-2 in the bottom of the 8th inning with Jose Bautista at the plate.

Sound far fetched? It’s not. It’s on the horizon. RIM for example, just announced two new BlackBerry devices this week that will ship with Augmented Reality capabilities built in. They also announced ‘Wikitudes’ – an Augmented reality browser that comes preloaded on these devices.

This will be the trend in the next 12-months for hardware manufacturers. Keep an eye on companies like Layar, a Dutch-based Augmented Reality software leader. They have prototyped some very cool concepts for Augmented Reality, showcasing how you and I could interact, play games, shop and learn using Augmented Reality.

This technology will become more widely adopted. New concepts will be created that will help you access your digital world in ways you have never imagined and never thought possible.

Canada 3.0: Creating Engagement and Collaborating With Digital Tools

During this week’s Canada 3.0 conference in Stratford, I was asked for my thoughts on how ORYX uses digital tools to collaborate with other individuals across our company as well as how we use these tools to engage our external audience. I’m not sure if it was simply a lack of preparedness on the topics or the on-the-spot nature of the video interview, but I feel like I gave a terrible interview – Hopefully it doesn’t make it off of the cutting room floor! I’m going to provide additional thoughts around these questions since I don’t feel that I was able to articulate my thoughts clearly and the possibility of you seeing my performance in this video worries me.

How does your company use digital tools to collaborate and share information?
With offices in Toronto and Kitchener-Waterloo, and clients from Vancouver to Miami, connectivity and collaboration are two important keys to ensuring our projects are kept on track and our clients are kept informed. We use Skype’s Video chat feature to hold weekly status meetings between offices to discuss current projects and deliverables. We also use Skype to hold regular update meetings with clients who are out of province or out of country. With gas prices soaring higher each day, Skype not only enables us to feel like we are meeting face-to-face, it also helps us control our travel expenses.

ORYX has deployed Salesforce.com internally as well. We use this cloud-based solution to stay on top of our new business leads, opportunities and to manage all of the contacts that flow into our business. Salesforce mobile enables us to keep a finger on the pulse of our sales pipeline and the stages that our clients are in within our sales cycle on the go. We have access to more timely information and can assign specific tasks to individuals across our organization no matter where we are.

At ORYX, we are also very heavy users of Google Docs. Google docs help us to collaborate on client projects, create and work inside project workflow documents in real time, create status updates and more. With Google docs, we not only feel like we are more connected on specific projects, it also helps us to keep on top of document versions, update in real-time and reduce our paper usage.

How does your company engage external audiences using digital tools?

The point I was trying to get across here during my video interview is that we are huge advocates of using social media platforms to engage our external audience. Through our personal and company blog and twitter accounts, we extend the marketing and advertising conversation to a wider audience, listen and respond to individuals who have questions or are looking for information on specific communications topics. As a company, our goal is to engage in conversations on twitter with at least one new person per day, and responding quickly to those who have questions for us individually, or as a company. The net result of this level of engagement has been increased awareness for our company, referrals, leads and even new business. Comments and questions on our blog have even resulted great conversations, and have led us to explore new segments of the market that were identified as being under-served.

How does your company use digital tools to collaborate across your organization and what tools do you use to engage your external audience? Keep the conversation going and visit our blog and Twitter accounts:

Matt Duench’s blog: mduench.wordpress.com

Matt Duench on Twitter: @mduench

ORYX Advertising on Twitter: @ORYXadvertising

ORYX Blog: oryxblog.com

QR Code Egg Hunt – Location Four: WeSellIt

April 29, 2011 Leave a comment

Congratulations to all of those in KW who used their QR code scanner on Thursday to find the fourth secret location, WeSellIt in Waterloo! Krista, Will and Barry at WeSellIt offered up some cool prizes in addition to the hidden Easter basket. For finding the secret location, several people were rewarded with an electric weed wacker! Perfect since gardening season is just around the corner!

Congratulations to Caryn who was the first to find WeSellIt’s store location in North Waterloo by using her QR Code reader to scan the secret clue:

QR Code Easter Egg Hunt

Secret Location

Here’s a picture of Caryn with her prize:

QR Code Easter Egg Hunt
There were also three others who found the secret location and walked away with special gifts from WeSellIt:

The final KWeggHunt location will be revealed on Friday! There are chances to win a Blu-ray player, $25 Visa card from ORYX Advertising, or a signed jersey from the Kitchener Rangers! Happy hunting!

QR Code Egg Hunt – Location Three: The MUSEUM

April 29, 2011 Leave a comment

Congratulations to all of those in KW who used their QR code scanner to find the third secret location, The MUSEUM in Kitchener! Included in the gift basket was a Nike Golf umbrella from BlackBerry, which proved to be a great prize as it has been raining quite heavily in KW over the past week. The clue was shared at 11:15 AM and was swiftly found and claimed by Jason less than 15 minutes later!

Here is what the clue looked like:

QR code egg hunt

QR Code Clue

Here’s a picture of Jason with his prize:
QR Code Egg Hunt

Jason with his KWeggHunt prize

Here’s a look at all of the goodies inside of the basket:

QR Code Egg Hunt

Easter Basket

Also, Jason had this to say about The QR Code Egg Hunt:

Jason's Status

QR Code Egg Hunt

Response to the promotion has been excellent and people around Waterloo Region are definitely tech savvy, having no trouble finding the secret location using QR code readers on their smartphones.

Friday marks the last day that a #KWeggHunt basket will be found & the secret location will hold a draw where someone will win a Kitchener Rangers Jersey, Blu-Ray player or $25 Gift Card from ORYX Advertising!

An Easter Egg Hunt Using QR Codes

April 20, 2011 1 comment

Last month I wrote a post asking if we have killed QR codes in North America. Formats, devices, platforms and readers seem to be hindering adoption of what is an easy and powerful way to access information using any camera-equipped smartphone.

To test this, recently I ran what just might have been the first ever Easter Egg hunt using QR codes. Over the course of a week in April, I hid Easter Baskets full of goodies (golf umbrellas, golf balls, Tim Horton’s gift cards, Easter Candy) at several secret businesses around Waterloo Region. Each day I posted a clue using QR codes through Facebook, our Blog and Twitter that provided instructions on how to find the hidden basket. The first person to arrive at the secret location claimed the prize. We also installed  ‘digital ballot boxes’ at each location to make sure that people playing along were rewarded. Inside each store, we displayed another QR code which linked to a webform for contact and email capture. These ballots entered the participant into a grand prize draw to win a Blu-ray player, $25 Visa gift card and a hockey jersey signed by the Kitchener Rangers.

Fairview

Subworx THE MUSEUM

Wesellit

Fairview Park Mall QR Code Clue QR code egg hunt QR Code Easter Egg Hunt
The goal of this activity was to raise awareness for QR codes, local businesses and to prove that your small business doesn’t need a massive marketing budget to run successful campaigns. The campaign generated some interesting data:
  • Prize baskets were claimed within 30 minutes of the clue being shared
  • On average, 25 people participated in the hunt each day. That’s 25 incremental visitors to each location each day.
  • Through blog traffic, @mentions & RTs on Twitter, facebook posts over 1,200 impressions were generated
Further details of the project can be found in this report:

QR code

QR Code Project

A very wide and diverse demographic participated in the KW Egg Hunt. This activity also proved that ‘gamifying’ your marketing campaigns and sharing them through social media is an effective way to create action, boost awareness & interest while adding a layer of interactivity onto your existing marketing activities.

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