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Location-Based Marketing is Taking Over

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Smartphones ownership has skyrocketed, and mobile technology will continue to grow to match demand, as consumers are moving toward mobile over PC. Marketers must evolve to meet this new way of life, and location based marketing is leading the way.

Mobile ordering means more than using an app to secure a pizza. Huffington Post says that Starbucks has already announced plans to roll out its new ordering app, which relies on a customer’s proximity to a store to allow customers to place orders and pay by mobile device.

In addition to ordering, retailers are adopting ways to push coupons to customers that are near their store. Many consumers have indicated that a coupon would be used more often if they received it near the store that offered it. This can also apply to stores or companies holding a big event like a grand opening; push notification technology can be combined with location-based apps to reach nearby customers.

GPS capabilities in phones are really shaping the location-based marketing landscape. Restaurants can announce to nearby potential patrons that a half price promotion is about to begin, or airlines can announce in real time that a flight has been delayed.

All of these things are offering companies ways to customize the consumer experience, and consumers, in turn, are coming to expect nothing less from brands. Companies like Uber and others are finding ways to turn this technology into convenient services for the user.

The only drawback as a business is finding a delicate balance so that privacy concerns don’t outweigh the potential. Consumers share that they feel uncomfortable having their in-store behavior tracked, yet still want mobile coupons from nearby retailers.

How do you find that balance? Share your thoughts below!

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Emotional Video Ads Capture Your Brain

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Our brains are bombarded with messages by the minute. We spend so much time online and on our smart devices that we’ve become rather blind to standard ads, even when they are animated and flashing – competing for our attention. Are you familiar with “ad blocker” services on your computer? Our brains sort of have them, too.  So how can brands get through to their audience without completely stalking and invading them?

A Forrester Research analyst in New York believes that brands need to deliver emotional messages to accomplish this. Especially in the crowded mobile playing field.

Using the available digital data and targeting to reach a consumer who is interested in the product, you can make it past the filter in the brain that evaluates content and decides if it is relevant. But there is more to it than data analysis.

While video and image-based mobile experiences are expected to become more important in the years ahead, you cannot succumb solely to technology and forget your message. Advertising works when it has a high emotional appeal.

Video is the way for brands to make the most out of their message. Beyond TV media buys, brands can learn from YouTube celebrities – they build big audiences, but it’s the RELATIONSHIP with their audience that counts. By making recommendations and offering helpful tips, subscribers pay attention to everything you have to say.

Since the launch of Netflix in 2007, there has been a steady progression of new services and products in the video arena. The time is now for your brand to show that you are relatable and relevant, and your audience is waiting to see it. What’s your video marketing strategy to show them?

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What’s Hampering Your Mobile Content?

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Mobile devices are quickly evolving beyond smartphones and tablets into smartwatches, fitness trackers, and more; recently 1 to 1 Media reported that marketers are still struggling with the same issue: delivering compelling content on mobile devices.

Ned Newhouse, executive director of mobile and native at Condé Nast, stated that, “If you buy an ad, it should be seen, but please make sure the ad you’re going to post is worth my time. We don’t have banner blindness–we have bad creative.”

Capturing people’s attention today is harder than ever. According to the National Center for Biotechnology Information, the average attention span of a human being dropped to eight seconds in 2013, down four seconds from a study done in 2000. That is one second less than the attention span of a goldfish.

Adding to the challengers are device fragmentation, a lack of standardized mobile measurements, and a growing concern for privacy. This year, 37 percent of respondents to a mobile survey cited privacy as a very important issue compared to 22 percent who said the same in 2013.

And as screens get smaller, marketers and publishers must find more direct ways to communicate. People need to scan chunked information to get caught up, not read lengthy ads that must be scrolled or clicked to get the full story.

The solution to compelling mobile content is not easy; you have to use key data to find a balance between creativity and conversion.

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Millennials Prefer Mobile Over TV Time

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We know that millennials are mobile crazy, but now their obsessive behavior is affecting their all-around media habits. Media Post reports that the mobile behavior of 18- to-34-year-olds is cutting into their time with other media channels.

77% of Millennials use a smartphone daily, which far exceeds the 60% of Gen Xers that check their smartphone daily.

The multitasking generation?

Millennials are also known as the multitasking generation, yet surprisingly they appear to be spending significantly less time with their TV and computers. New research suggests that on a daily basis, 77% are watching TV compared to 86% of Gen Xers and 91% of Baby Boomers.

Only 58% of millennials are firing up their laptops or desktops at least once a day, whereas 67% of Gen Xers and 71% of Boomers are using their computers daily.

For marketers, this means your investments need to match your audience’s screen preferences.

How are you adjusting your messages to Millennials (18 to 34), Generation X (35 to 50) and the boomer generation (51 to 69)? Share your comments below!

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Google Warns Websites That Are Not Mobile-Optimized

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As Google continues to improve the mobile user experience, it’s obvious that brands with responsive websites benefit more from these efforts. However, Google has gotten a bit more aggressive and recently sent out a warning to webmasters via Webmaster Tools whose sites have mobile issues.

The warning highlights pages with ‘critical mobile usability errors;’ in other words, which pages do not display correctly on a mobile device. The warning goes on to state that, “these pages will not be seen as mobile-friendly by Google Search, and will therefore be displayed and ranked appropriately for smartphone users.”

What specifically does this mean? That Google will now rank non-mobile friendly sites lower during mobile users’ searches. Their new mobile algorithm gives preference to mobile optimized sites in its search results.

With mobile traffic rising across every field and market, this update from Google will have a direct impact on traffic and sales. It’s imperative for brands to audit and update their mobile performance accordingly.

If your website is not mobile-friendly, do not take this warning lightly. Google will continue to reward brands that are investing in their user experience by gearing up for the multi-screen and multi device world – from PC, to tablet, to smartphone – and plans to penalize those that don’t.

To find out where your website stands, try Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test Tool to identify any issues that will negatively affect your mobile rankings.

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Is Your Website as Strong as Your Services?

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Your company website shouldn’t be a supplement to what products or services you offer; it should be as strong as, if not stronger than them. Without this, you will have a hard time reaching clients and customers. Here are some things that make a website strong and effective.

Load time. People have become increasingly impatient, and a long load time equals immediate page abandonment. Make sure that your site loads quickly – resize images and don’t use an abundance of bells and whistles. Fast, clean and simple are priority.

Mobile-friendly. People are on the go, and that means they’re looking at your site from their smartphone more than from a desktop or laptop. If you don’t have a separate mobile version of your website, make sure the design you have is responsive – meaning it adjusts to the screen it is being viewed on. The average American owns four digital devices, and your website should look good on all of them.

Fresh content. A stale website is bad for search engines and bad for visitors! Make sure you’re offering helpful content that makes you a resource for your industry. Whether it’s keeping a blog up to date or a calendar of events, fresh content is a win-win.

Colors. It takes less than 90 seconds for customers to form an opinion about a brand. Much of that decision is formed by the colors you choose for your website. Make sure it is sending the right message about your company. Blue equates to a trustworthy business, red conveys competence, yellow is energetic, and green is down to earth and healthy. Some lighter colors like pink can signify trendy or chic, depending on the product.

What does your website say about your business? Share by commenting below!


Do Mobile Location Ads Work?

moving-forwards-1431094-1-mMobile location-based ads can result in improved targeting and engagement for advertisers. But do they really work? It depends on their accuracy.

Location accuracy is defined as where a user’s stated location is in relation to their actual location, which can vary depending on the source used!

According to a September 2014 report, the most accurate source is assisted GPS, followed by Wi-Fi and cell towers. Fourth in line for reliability is IP address and the least effective is user registration.

The largest share of accurate impressions served in the US in Q3 was from hyperlocal campaigns, up 12% from Q2. Surprisingly, mobile users are fond of these location-based ads, with 51% stating they find them geographically relevant. Just two years ago users were not so comfortable with the idea and voted geo-targeting as sort of “creepy.”

In order to keep up with this rising trend, advertisers should increase their mobile location spending to improve accuracy and give consumers the relevant ads they want.

Are you using mobile location ads? How does your audience respond? Share by commenting below!

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Mobile Marketing Mistakes

Angry Young Business WomanWhen email campaigns first hit the scene, it was quickly learned incorrect email marketing could result in grave mistakes for your brand. Mobile campaigns are no different, and you want to avoid these mistakes at all costs.

Missing a Call to Action. In all your marketing mediums, you have to tell your customers what you want them to do next. This is extremely important for mobile marketing – not only do they need to know what to do, but it has to be extremely easy for them to do so. Think about what you want to happen; add a prominent subscribe button, coupon, or number to call.

Forgetting to Proofread. There’s nothing worse than receiving an advertisement that has the wrong information or spelling and grammar mistakes. Make sure you look at your mobile message as a customer would – does it make sense? Are the details accurate?

Offering No Way Out. You must allow people to unsubscribe or opt out, or you may not be complying with the CAN-SPAM Act. And why would you want to hoard a list full of people that don’t really want to receive your information? If people want to unsubscribe, let them.

Inundating Customers.  Don’t barrage your customers’ inboxes and phones with too many messages. Space your campaigns to stay top of mind without stalking, preferably two to three weeks between messages.

Forgetting to Add Value. No one wants to be sold to anymore! You must deliver value if you want people on your list. Try offering interesting videos, local and relevant information, or asking your customers to vote on something.

Are you making any of these mistakes? Share your comments below!

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Make Sure You’re Doing Mobile Right

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Creating mobile display campaigns can be time consuming, but it’s not as daunting a platform as you may think.

Mobile display campaigns don’t require any special formula and often don’t need to be built too differently from standard display campaign.

Mobile display is now the strongest growing digital inventory source available, according to ClickZ. If you’re not already doing it, the time for a mobile display strategy is now!

What you need to know

Mobile inventory spans two types of ad space, in-app and mobile Web. In-app targeting allows for ads to be shown within applications and targeting can be done based on app description or by choosing specific apps to advertise within. Mobile Web targeting reaches users on mobile sites.

Regardless of which type you choose, make sure you choose a mobile-friendly website as your landing page! The last thing you want to do is send someone to a clunky, slow loading website with too many tabs to click before the user sees any vital information.

Size matters

Ensuring you have the correct sizes and file types for mobile display is crucial. Default mobile sizes are: 320×50, 300×250, and 336×280. If you’re running on tablet devices as well, 728×90 and 468×60 are key sizes to create.

How are your mobile ads working? Share your comments below!

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Google Now Offers a Targeted Mobile App for Search


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TechCrunch recently announced Google’s plans to offer targeted app install ads on mobile search and YouTube, something recently accomplished by Facebook, Yahoo and Twitter. Businesses that want to promote these app installs across the AdMob network are able to target consumers based on data Google already has on file, like what apps they use, how often they use them and what purchases they’ve made.

If a person regularly uses an app to track their daily exercise, they might see an ad for app to track their diet, according to the TechCrunch example. Marketers can target their audience using analytics and keyword suggestions from Google Play.

Google is also expanding this new app to integrate deep linking with AdWords, allowing businesses to buy advertisements that, when clicked, will redirect users directly inside their already-downloaded and installed mobile apps.

Google’s initial introduction included participation from Allthecooks, AllTrails, Beautylish, Etsy, Expedia, Flixster, Healthtap, IMDb, Moviefone, Newegg, OpenTable, and Trulia.

Earlier this month, Google announced that 24 more apps had integrated this deep linking technology, including Huffington Post, Merriam-Webster, Pinterest,, Tumblr, Urbanspoon, Zappos, Zillow and many other big players.

Prior to this, publishers could promote their ads on Google search, where consumers were pointed to their app store landing page; now marketers can narrowly target these ads, which is great news.