E- commerce , m- commerce are really the buzz words these days and I’m sure most of you would be wondering what really is the fuss all about? Why is that these days every company including the traditional brick and mortar firms are aiming for a web presence and mobile presence??
My definition of m-commerce is “taking your business as close as the pocket of your consumer”. Yes, taking your business to your consumer’s cell phone, which makes it accessible almost any time he wants. And you could be in any business, be it “a bank “ ,where people store their lifetime savings, “a general store” for daily purchases or “a fashion or electronic store” selling the luxuries in life. So whatever the business is, m- commerce is all over the place. Marketers find themselves with newer opportunities and bigger challenges to exploit this area.
Now this could be attained by a lot of means, could be as simple as marketing your product via SMS, the traditional telemarketing, advertising through banner ads or as complex as taking your entire business to the phone via Mobile web presence or creating specific mobile apps.
So why do I say that mobile marketing is an important target for the companies in the coming days??
A plethora of mobile devices are available in market today: Smart Phones, iPods, laptops, net-books, iPads, USB drives, and handheld games seem to be everywhere. And these devices find application in every sphere of life changing the way we do business, travel or study. Smart Phones have led the way with people using their phones to surf the net, receive advertising, and text messaging.
Let us look at some statistics from the research conducted by large research firms in US.
The statistics speak for themselves. Clearly the people in the age group 18-34 are ‘high’ on technology and also the perfect target group for most firms as usually the people in this age group are what we can call “innovators” who are willing to give a shot to new things and are also the biggest spenders. Also gone are the days where cell phone was just a means of communication; rather it’s now a means of entertainment with people using it for internet, clicking pictures, and texting or playing games. The use of smart phones is predicted to grow rapidly over the next five years; most companies realize this and are getting in on the advertising opportunity.
As the gen-Next continues to get more and more addicted to technology, the job of the marketer becomes easier as well as challenging. I say easier, as the customer base is rapidly growing but challenging as your competitors realize the same and you need to act fast. Differentiation is the key. But one thing is certain, mobile marketing is the way to go for any firm nowadays and it needs to be an integral part of its IMC.
~ Esha Gupta
Batch of 2012
DoMS, IIT Madras