For quite some time now we have been discussing mobile marketing concepts with the majority of our client base. conceptbakery did a little bluetooth beamer demonstration in Germany a few years ago. We sent a fake mobile virus around. The problem was that the hardware simple wasn‘t there yet – the reach to a broader audience was limited. Only South Korea and Japan have adopted cutting edge mobile marketing concepts – simply because their hardware is ready for it.
Things have shifted with one little announcement this week: Steve Jobs told us that he ended the skimming phase of the iPhone market entry and is going mainstream now.
The old iPhone was sold in 6 countries. The new one will be available in 70. Multiple carrier options might become available in some markets. The price was cut from $399 to $199 for a greatly improved phone. Mobile devices devalue quickly and the high price of the original iPhone was only cutting it for very early adopters – but not for a family of five or for casual users.
Now things will shift and the iPhone and other comparable smart phones are going to gain a significant market share fairly soon.
That in return makes it more interesting for marketers to focus on mobile marketing opportunities that go a bit beyond sending coupons via SMS.
If your crowd carries smart phones, you might very well cater to it. The new iPhone has GPS built in. This offers a store manager to send special offers to (potential) clients in store vicinity. You could look at website on your phone and the content could automatically change based on where you are. There are about a gazillion other possibilities with this technology. Now the ball is in the developers and marketers park – not with the mobile phone providers or carriers any longer.
Our world won‘t change overnight but I expect a massive shift in the medium term. Mobile technology used smart can help us to drive less: Finding the nearest location, sharing rides, finding other transportation synergies. It can truly provide relevant benefits to businesses and individuals.
Mobile technology used dumb (as in “spamâ€ or “crooksâ€) can bring collapse to our networks and will annoy us more than spam email ever did.
Self-regulating a market that gives aggressive and deceiving “Shoutersâ€ and edge seems nearly impossible. Our economy is not built on the principles of decency and self-constraint.
I might flush down my 2g iPhone if things go wrong. In that case there will be no more demos at my sales pitches then;-)
And thanks to Dave Taylor for letting me hold his first generation iPhone this morning. What a moment. This must have been one of the very first ones every made. I am sure it was pulled right off the production line;-)