Leadership Perspectives

How Mobile Marketers Can Avoid Losing Customers During The Holiday Season

Becky Doles

“I love working my way through crowds of people and spending hours in a stressful shopping environment every holiday season.” – said no one ever.

Holiday shopping is a gigantic mess. Luckily, with the majority of brands and services now available as a mobile app, you can now enjoy shopping from your cozy couch, snuggled up with a blanket, iPad in hand, and hot cocoa within reach. As a mobile marketer, this means you need to be on top of your game as mobile devices are now the primary gateway to your company.

If you’ve been part of the mobile marketing scene for years, you’ll be aware of the mobile milestones that have been reached during 2013. We’ve crossed a threshold. Over 1,000 apps are being submitted to the Apple App Store a day, and Google Play is experiencing just under 1,000 apps submitted each day. This makes one thing abundantly clear. There is more competition than ever before in the mobile marketplace. If you’re a mobile marketer this means you’re under more pressure than ever before to keep your product or service in front of your customers.

More important than gaining new customers is keeping the ones you already have. So, how do you avoid losing your customers during the ever important, crowded, and noisy holiday season? Well, it starts with taking actions that are thoughtful. Just blasting your customers with messages or laying low and hoping for the best won’t get the job done.

Avoid Standing Still

The most effective way to lose customers during the holiday season is by doing nothing at all. Sitting idly by as competitors sling out holiday campaigns means your customers will be drawn away. Even if you have incredibly loyal customers there is no excuse for not taking efforts to drive that loyalty deeper or foster it in other customers. Whether you plan to provide holiday savings, run an event, or host a competition, plan to do something. Even a simple card, message, or video can serve as a reminder to your customers and go a long way towards retaining them during the holidays.

If you’re looking for a couple of ideas, use one of mobile’s unique traits such as geolocation, QR codes, or augmented reality. Entice customers to enter your store or purchase a specific product with a message that is sent based on the customers proximity to your store or another location that is relevant. Place QR codes on interesting places that get traffic on and offline. Use augmented reality to share hidden coupons or show what a bedroom could look like with a makeover.

Avoid Increasing the Noise

Your customers will be bombarded with marketing messages from every company they’ve shopped with, service they’ve used, and random list they’ve been placed on. For as much as possible, restrain from entering this shouting competition and sing a different tune instead. Creative marketing projects can go much further than a coupon email or layering savings images around your app.

Here are a couple of mobile marketing ideas that have worked well and will stand out to your customers:

  • Make your mobile marketing interactive – Reward customers for coming into your stores, scanning items in their households, or taking pictures of themselves with your product.
  • Offer exclusive content – Macy’s, ever ahead of the mobile marketing curb, launched a creative campaign that offered exclusive video reviews of products when QR codes were scanned.

Never forget your customers are on a mobile device. Everything you do should be simple and well designed. Cramming a lot of content into your mobile marketing campaign is overwhelming in the limited space you have. Keep your marketing goal extremely focused to a single goal and work towards it with a “less is more” perspective. The available real estate on mobile devices is small so make every pixel count (that includes leaving space!).

Avoid Being Anti-Social

Using social in your mobile marketing can be a huge boost to every campaign you launch. On mobile devices even the simplest registration or check-out forms can prevent customers from completing an action. It is often cumbersome to fill out a form on a small screen and and the longer the form the more likely it won’t be completed. Social logins are able to pass along most and sometimes all of the information you may need. It takes a painful process on mobile and turns it into a step completed with a simple tap. Research from a variety of companies have shown that implementing a social login can boost conversions by up to 50%.

In every mobile marketing campaign a single share from an influencer, family, or friend has the potential to drive more traffic than any other method. By placing a Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or any other relevant social button into your marketing you’re making it easy for your content to spread virally. Encourage customers to share with prompts such as “Thinking about buying this shirt? See what your friends think!” or “Share your purchase to show off your new gear!”

Being Mobile During the Holidays

The potential of revenue during the holiday season can make or break a company’s year. You don’t want to stand silent at the risk of being forgotten, nor do you want your voice to blend into the overall noise. To help stand out it’s important that improving your mobile app for the holidays is a priority alongside being creative with your marketing. Being creative and focusing on thoughtful engagement tactics over blasting messages will have a meaningful impact on keeping your customers during the holidays.

Make your customers laugh, engage, share, and enjoy the marketing you use during the holidays and you can be sure that they will come back for more.

What mobile marketing tactics are using to stand out and engage your customers? I would love to hear them in the comments below.

Becky Doles

Becky is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at TUNE. Before TUNE, she led a variety of marketing and communications projects at San Francisco startups. Becky received her bachelor's degree in English from Wake Forest University. After living nearly a decade in San Francisco and Seattle, she has returned to her home of Charleston, SC, where you can find her enjoying the sun and salt water with her family.

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