Mkodo’s Mark Gibson on joined-up messaging

Mark Gibson
Mark Gibson

Mark Gibson, mkodo Business Development Director and Chair of the AIME Mobile Betting Gaming Forum, believes that the different mobile marketing channels need not be viewed separately.

Developing an excellent, market-leading, mobile proposition for your customers to enjoy is one thing but you’re only taking advantage of half the opportunity if you don’t address acquisition and engagement strategies.

Within mobile, using messaging (whether in-app or SMS or IM-style) to communicate to a customer is a very effective and efficient channel. Given the mobile phone is the most trusted means of personal communication, organisations should seek to leverage this trust to reinforce the customer’s connection with the brand.

Mobile messaging, very broadly, comes in three shapes … SMS-type mobile messaging, in-app notifications (or ‘Push Notifications’), and Social messaging. All three should be accommodated and all three should engage in your brand values.

Push Notifications have gained in popularity with brands and customers as native applications have increased in popularity and scope.

SMS is very well known as a mobile communications medium and has ubiquitous use within a mobile subscriber base. It currently has some significant advantages over the use of in-app Push Notifications for marketing to customers and potential customers:

  • reach – 4.5bn mobile phones worldwide are SMS enabled
  • immediacy – SMS notifications appear immediately – often with a sound
  • competitive space – SMS are likely to be in and around personal messages for customers and so will not be in a bucket with other brands’ notifications

The two channels (SMS and Push) are often considered as separate from each other – this, we feel at mkodo, is missing a trick. Both channels deliver marketing and user-journey messages to customers.

SMS and Push are both likely to be seen by a very high proportion of your customers/recipients, they are both likely to be read in a very short timeframe (SMS are read within seconds of receipt and have a 98% open-rate), they both provide excellent conversion (i.e. ‘click-through’) rates for calls-to-action within the message (e.g. the average Click Through Rate (CTR) of URLs included in SMS messages is 19%, compared to just 4.2% CTR for emails), and they both have a similar character count.

With our mobile Messaging product, mkodo has pioneered the concept of ‘Joined-Up Messaging’ within the mobile messaging sector. Joined-Up Messaging means your organisation can connect with customers by both SMS and in-app Push Notifications via one easy, self- service interface…enabling a seamless mCRM strategy.

Social sits somewhat separately in tenor from SMS or Push Notifications. The value of social is, in part, responsive and interactive. Customers, when they post questions or comments related to your brand/campaign, will expect a timely response and will announce to the world (for good or bad) what they feel about it. Social also provides an avenue for a more light-hearted communication – it’s less about the sale and the call-to-action that the establishment of a brand-identity.

Things to consider for mobile messaging:

  • What’s your audience? What’s the best channel or mix of channels?
  • What do you want your message to be for that channel?
  • What is the call to action and how might you measure effectiveness?
  • Pick the right messaging provider for you – push only/messaging only/both?
  • Think about your likely throughput – can your proposed provider can fulfil this?

Here’s our checklist for what your mobile messaging supplier should provide:

  • Apple Push and Google Push (in-app) Notifications
  • Enterprise-grade, Tier 1 SMS messaging – delivering high-volume solutions
  • Competitive SMS rates
  • Global messaging reach, multi-language & multi-script
  • Messages customisable via an online user interface or via an API
  • Personalisation of messages based on user or segmentation
  • Deep-linking to promotion or content pages/views
  • Platform proven in supporting time-sensitive, volume based campaigns

Little wonder that we have incorporated all of the above in our innovative mobile messaging product!

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