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Direct Response Marketing

Nokia Puts DR in Your Pocket

1 Jul, 2008 By: Thomas Haire Response

The new Nokia Interactive works with Hyundai, BP and Pepsi on mobile campaigns, and Jeremy Wright says the company — and the mobile marketing revolution — is just getting started.


Leaping Into a Flourishing Market


Nokia's search for expansion into mobile advertising began with the purchase of Enpocket in fall 2007. At the time, Tero Ojanpera, Nokia's chief technology officer, explained, "Nokia has already announced its intention to be a leading company in consumer Internet services, and we believe that mobile advertising will be an important element in monetizing those services for our customers and partners. Enpocket's mature, leading-edge platform and people expertise are a strong fit with Nokia's existing capabilities in the mobile advertising market. This acquisition is a game-changing move to bring the reach and depth of Nokia to organize the market across the world, and make it easier for an ecosystem to develop."

According to Wright, the growth capabilities of the mobile market made Nokia's choice to create the Nokia Interactive Advertising business with the Enpocket deal an absolute no-brainer. "The sheer scale of mobile is stunning — there are 3.3 billion mobile users worldwide," Wright contends. "That's twice as many people with mobile phones as homes with televisions or PC users. It's far and away the largest medium, and by 2015, there will be more than 5 billion mobile devices with Internet capability in consumers' hands."

Wright points to the fact that mobile is a medium that is carried with consumers "everywhere, 24/7," when he talks about the medium's unique capabilities to reach consumers. "You can target consumers by location using GPS, by time, by almost any kind of targeting," he adds. "Already, the most advanced users around the world are major targets for advertisers."

He adds that the company conducts a regular research study, in which it interviews more than 70,000 mobile users in more than 20 countries. "This shows that advanced smart-phone users already use the mobile Internet three-to-four hours a week, and voice calls have dwindled to just 12 percent of their usage time on the phone," Wright says. "Thirty-seven percent of the time is spent on messaging."

Still, while the market in the U.S. remains relatively untapped, Wright says there are a number of opportunities, as well as things that marketers and branders need to be wary of before jumping into the mobile pool. "First off, you must not think of it as a small PC," he says sternly. "While it is a digital device, it has many different features, and users treat them differently. A lot of marketers tend to think, 'We run banners on the Web, let's see how they work on mobile.' That's not really getting to the devices' real capabilities."

Pointing to the overwhelming voter numbers on "American Idol," Wright contends that people are happy to engage via mobile with the "right opportunity or offer." He adds, "If you engage through mobile, there are mechanics and capabilities unique to mobile. It's a phone, so you can click to call. You can click to text. You can click to a mobile Web site for a coupon or download."

Wright also says that mobile users are "fashion-conscious" about their phones, making ringtones, wallpapers and other downloads valuable branding tools. He says a recent Harris Interactive study showed that 61 percent of teens are interested in free entertainment downloads. "This is a channel that allows marketers to reward consumers — free airtime, free downloads, etc. — giving it tremendous potential for driving engagement, developing opt-ins and developing response," Wright adds.

Still, Wright says there are major differences between mobile and traditional direct response. "Traditional DR has a completely ROI-driven method," he says. "More often than not, traditional DR campaigns are wholly focused on the value of the response rate itself. As long as you get the percentage to drive revenue, impact on the brand is secondary. With mobile, you have to be a lot more sensitive about opt-ins and opt-outs. You can't sell or pass lists to other brands. You have to keep a health check of all the people targeted in a mobile campaign, and you can't just hammer your base for a response."

However, while mobile DR might need a little more care from a marketer's perspective, Wright says that mobile can be combined with other media to create very successful campaigns. "It would be a mistake to look at mobile as just a push medium," he says. "It's also a wonderful pull method for other channels."

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