Microsoft taught generations how to to use the Windows Start button as the jumping off point to accessing the digital world. Todays internet giants and retailers are training us to use our mobile devices in new ways to interact with the world around us wherever we go. Mobile marketing is more than facebook owning the word Like, it’s how our customers use mobile services to simplify their shopping experiences.
Starbucks is actively training lines of coffee junkies everywhere how to use their smartphone as a mobile wallet. How many of your Through the Starbucks native mobile apps as well as through partnership with mega payments startup Square, the transaction checkout time has never been shorter. To use with your phone as a mobile wallet at Starbucks, add your credit card in app, and then hold your phone to the ocular scanner at the register.
Paying with your phone also automatically puts you on a first name basis with your barista, adding to customer loyalty, and counts towards the My Starbucks Rewards program, earning free drinks and food with every 12 purchases.
eBay has reinvented itself has a mobile first company focusing on get-it-now purchases. Following San Francisco startup Postmates, eBay Now in partnership with major retailers, enables you to search for and order items from local stores. Only available in San Francisco and parts of New York City, choose from thousands of local products to be delivered to your door in about an hour. For $5 dollars delivered, you never have to leave your couch or wander aisles looking for something that might be in stock. Look for eBay motors and eBay classifieds for car dealers to beef up their mobile functionality this year.
Why not Square for parts or even some services? Why not mobile cross-promotions with local retailers to drive showroom traffic? The possibilities are far reaching; especially for those who exploit the mobile marketing window of opportunity to be a first mover in your market.
To be the dealer of choice in your market in the near future, you need to be placing bets now on how customers will interact with your dealership through their mobile devices. Mobile marketing starts with being on a first name basis with your customers in-store, being able to interact with them through the mobile web, and listing your inventory on an interactive, integrated mobile site. It is estimated that in 2012, 94% of smartphones users will be mobile internet users. What are your plans to reach them?
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