Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Digital Coupons Could Transform Cell Phones Into Ad Space

CM Comment: Some mobile marketing examples.

October 23, 2009: summarized from TwinCities.com -- You talk on them. You text on them. You snap pictures, listen to music, play games, surf the Web and maybe even tweet on them.

America's marketing industry now thinks you're ready to use your cell phone to clip coupons in a big way.

Brooklyn Center-based Caribou Coffee used a mobile couponing company called Cellfire to send coupons this year for its new Acacia Organic Blend and Northern Lite Latte.

"We looked at mobile marketing as a way for us to drive store traffic and gain trial for a new product launch," marketing manager Jake Miller said. "If we can get trial, we know there is a good chance that guest will come back again." He declined to give details on the results but said Caribou would use mobile coupons again.

MixMobi, a Plymouth mobile marketing startup, is launching a technology platform that lets retailers build coupons that can be "tweeted" on the social media site Twitter, which appears on cell phones as well as computers.

To be sure, technologists have heralded mobile coupons for several years with little effect. But a sudden surge of interest by big- name retailers and packaged-goods companies, coupled with better technology, is creating buzz for the mobile coupon this year. Only 3 percent of consumers used a mobile coupon in 2008, but more than half of them knew about them, Forrester Research, a technology consultancy, reported this year.

The recession has advanced coupon usage in all its forms, including online. Digital coupons were the fastest growing Web site category last November, with visitors to coupon sites up 32 percent over October 2008, said comScore Inc., another technology research company.

Put it all together, and advertisers see cell phones as 277 million tiny electronic billboards in every pocket or purse.

The popularity of smart phones, with their larger, made-for-the-Web screens, is driving the trend, too. Coupons look better on bigger screens, marketers say.

Read more at: http://bit.ly/2KCAxH

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