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Awards for turning the mobile phone into a ‘sell’ phone

The simple mobile phone was an indispensable tool for Mobitainment’s Award winning Boxer Super Shopper Show – as it recently walked away with three awards at the Standard Bank Mobile Marketing Association’s Smarties SA Awards: Bronze for Cross Media Integration; Bronze for Brand Awareness and a Silver in the Lead Generation, Direct Response, Conversion category.

As per the latest local mobile stats released in the MMA’s #MobileRocks report, shows that mobile penetration in South Africa is high, with 87 percent of adults either owning or having access to a mobile phone. ‘Today, mobile is used more than any other communication media – in fact mobile surpassed television as far back as 2009. Add to this the fact that the Internet is accessed more frequently via mobile phones than PC’s and you have a winning formula on your hands,’ commented Candice Goodman, Chairman Emeritus and head of Education & Training committee at the MMA of SA, and CEO of International award winning mobile marketing consultancy Mobitainment.

That said, marketers using mobile as a medium should be aware that in developing countries such as South Africa, mobile is used differently to that of developed countries. With this in mind, Goodman believes that it is the entrepreneurial spirit of Africa, coupled with the need for communication, commerce and community that has seen the creation of pioneering solutions in the mobile arena in Africa, by Africans. ‘It is not the technology itself that is changing the landscape of mobile marketing in Africa,’ she stressed. ‘Rather, I believe that African people are changing technology and creating new opportunities for marketers to learn and share.’

One of the greatest differentiators of the African mobile landscape is the fact that while the mobile penetration rate in South Africa is high, only an estimated 41 percent of these users have smart phones. The remaining 59 percent make use of non-smart phones, a statistic which has led some South African mobile marketers like us, to the development of mobile marketing solutions that do not require the use of smart phones. With 39 percent of all SA mobile users only using voice, SMS or USSD on their phones, these solutions leverage the innovation of African born technologies that were a world first: Prepaid Airtime, USSD, Please call me’s and Mobile Money.

‘While your campaign may take place via the mobile platform, the objective is ultimately to drive consumers in store,’ she commented. ‘Sending out unique mobile coupons is a method that has been in use for years, but closing the loop in store has remained a challenge. Integrating the redemption process into a retailer’s point of sale is a viable solution and a powerful option for FMCG brands and one that promises great success.’

Indeed, mobile campaigns, like the Boxer Super Shopper Show, have proved time and time again to work extremely effectively in the mass market. With a variety of channels to choose from, a wide reach and the opportunity to create real engagement with consumers, brands stand to benefit from significant ROI on these campaigns. ‘The golden thread is speaking to the right person, at the right time, with the right message,’ Goodman concluded ‘and it’s our job at Mobitainment to take care of that message, and like we did for the Boxer Super Shopper Show, turn the mobile phone into a “SELL” phone for your brand.’

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