A shift is happening. And it’s happening before our eyes.
According to statistics, smart phone penetration in New Zealand rose from 5% to 13% in 2010. The prediction was for 2011 to be the year of the smartphone, assisted by the growing popularity of Android handsets.
It was originally business professionals and early adopters who brandished Blackberrys and iPhones. However social media has had an interesting side effect. The desire to remain always connected with your social network has swiftly made smartphones a must-have with teens and 20-somethings who might not ordinarily have the cash to afford one.
Cases in point. My niece is getting an iPhone for her 16th birthday. And my hairdresser is saving up because as it happens, all her friends already have one, as a way of keeping up with Facebook action. Somewhere there was a tipping point that tipped.
What does this mean for businesses? Should you be bothering to be part of the smartphone scene? My answer today is yes. Because like social media, social mobile is now becoming ‘mass’.
The cost of data used to be a barrier, but ever-more affordable pricing plans have made accessing the Internet on the move an every day, even several times a day, occurrence. 41% of Facebook users check their feed every day; 30% access from a mobile phone. 27% of Twitter users access the channel every day; 37% access from a mobile phone.
In the last article we talked about how Localist can help you make sense of social media, and easily integrate social marketing into your existing advertising mix.
Localist works like a typical business directory. Your pages can be found by anyone needing your kind of service. And your pages are automatically optimised on Google so that anyone searching there can find you as well.
Localist is also designed for social media integration. So if you write an update on your Localist business page, you can publish it to Twitter and Facebook immediately. No need to update all three platforms independently.
The magic really happens on the Localist mobile apps - available on iPhone and Android. List with Localist and your business is automatically searchable on the Localist smart apps. If you have a business page, your updates are posted there as well.
So customers following you can see new products in stock, any offers available and other news you want to share.
Traditional web search is now moving increasingly to smart mobile. Many types of businesses can benefit. For example, florists are likely to do well on Mothers Day. And there’s nothing like engine trouble to get you reaching for the mobile for the nearest garage or towing service.
I like to think that on smart mobile - marketing comes into its own. Because offering the right product, at the right price, at the right time was never so easy.
Why so? It’s all about location based services. It’s about people seeking you out because they are on your doorstep.
Your phone is your window to the neighbourhood nearby. And in the US, deal services like Groupon Now are taking advantage of that desire to eat, shop and be entertained on the spot. On Foursquare, checking-in allows you to see whether a business has a current offer. Some New Zealand businesses have Foursquare offers already.
Mobile users are often seeking inspiration, and want to find a business nearby to fulfill that need. Basically mobile buyers are the hottest prospects you can find. This is in contrast to web browsers who do more research in advance for the things they need.
On smart mobile, Localist is making its mark. Localist ‘nearby’ shows you which businesses are close to you, and which ones have a special or offer. You can sort them by category (restaurant, florist, auto garage) and see if they have a good rating and are recommended by others.
I used the Localist iPhone app. while visiting the North Shore recently. Not knowing the area, I pulled up the Localist app, and found a well-rated restaurant for lunch. You can see how mobile becomes the perfect way to attract new customers, who are instant buyers.
Getting going on mobile with Localist costs nothing - business listings are free. And business pages offering social and mobile integration are available at a low monthly fee. Call 0800 030 030 to find out more or contact us online.