Going Mobile: New Mobile Solution Has Marketers Seeing Stars1 Oct, 2011 By: Scott Friedland Response
As DR marketers strive to lower the cost-per-call, an exciting new tool may change the way we measure our leads and conversions.
The strengths of 800 numbers, radio/TV, online, testimonials, long- and short-form are well known. But how many know how to use mobile and the newest innovations to deliver messaging to all phones on all carriers? “Star Star” Numbers (**) now offer this opportunity.
A law firm could advertise using 1-800-8000-LAW to the firm’s call center, or even drive a customer to text “LAW” to a short code like 55654 to receive a link to obtain more information. Today, with a vanity number like **LAW, the firm’s spots make it spot-on simple for customers to call these few digits from any mobile phone. The call is then forwarded to the live call center or plays a pre-recorded message and simultaneously sends the caller an SMS, MMS — or both — which can include a coupon, a link to a micro-site, a 30-second spot, a customer testimonial, or a link to the iTunes or Android store to download the firm’s mobile app.
Radio and mobile integrate well together to drive conversion. Natalie Hale, CEO of remnant radio media buying agency Media Partners Worldwide, believes in the strategy. “We know that mobile is integral in any radio campaign today,” she says. “‘Star Star’ can help lower cost-per-call. Plus, I really like the push-to-the-phone interactive capability. In one call, a customer can get a download of a coupon or even a ‘how-to video’ of the product.”
Preliminary campaigns have proven that marketers can drive a lower cost-per-call without driving a consumer to a call center if the product does not need to rely on the “high touch” (and higher cost) of a human to close a sale. Instead, consumers get the opportunity to collect an immediate discount for a product that is available at a brick-and-mortar by simply calling a ** vanity and using a text-delivered response for immediate offers of savings. This push method of the new ** solution can be vastly preferable to the old pull model if used correctly.
Some DRTV media buying agencies may not be keen on innovating at the risk of their clients’ bottom lines. While they try to keep up with new tools and processes, they may not want risk media dollars on something that was not proven. While I understand the conundrum, to me, the idea of direct response has been about testing and learning. A small media dollar risk to test this new alternative that can drive mobile vanity names with the interactive immediacy of sending something persistent back to the caller on their mobile phone seems to fit that idea.
One of the most interesting aspects of the ** mobile vanity is the ability to use one ** number nationally and automatically drive the consumer to any regional call center or local store by the area code from which they are calling — not their handset’s actual phone number. (They are mobile, after all.) This is ideal for franchises and businesses that want to build category networks to leverage the economy of national media buying while driving customers on a regional basis.
While mobile industry guidelines require consumers to opt in to accept remarketing, this barrier is minimized when a customer receives something valuable. Even without opting in, that coupon residing on the phone becomes a reminder to redeem it or redial the call center. And if they do opt in, or download the company’s mobile app, future notifications can be pushed on a time-sensitive basis — something an 800 number cannot do.
“Star Star” can be used as an important lead-generation tool to drive awareness and deliver customer acquisition, loyalty and retention.
Check out these current ** campaigns that are in use right now: