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How SMEs can use mobile marketing to reach the planet’s population

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How SMEs can use mobile marketing to reach the planet’s population
How SMEs can use mobile marketing to reach the planet’s population.

In 2018, an estimated 65.9 percent of the world’s population will own a mobile phone. This prediction by the international GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) Association has implications for the way under-pressure SMEs reach their customers.

According to the Banking Association of South Africa (BASA), small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) provide employment to about 60% of the SA labour force and their total economic output accounts for roughly 34% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP).


Sadly, 70% to 80% of small businesses fail within five years with runaway expenses and lack of access to technology being two of the primary reasons the big dreams of small business owners evaporate faster than a 5 litre mineral water container in Cape Town.

“Fortunately, mobile marketing is data-driven and this means small business owners always know what mobile is costing versus what it’s delivering,” says Mike Laws, founding Managing Director of Imaginatrix, a mobile marketing consultancy specialising in developing world markets and based in Johannesburg.

Most mobile marketing consultancies will provide SME clients with an online dashboard to evaluate campaign effectiveness in realtime at no extra cost. “The tech-driven and virtually automated nature of mobile marketing means awesome reporting comes standard,” adds Mr Laws.

He further explains that there are two categories of mobile marketing tactics that SMEs should focus on. “There are easily doable, affordable mobile marketing tactics that should be implemented immediately and there are more expensive, state-of-the-art mobile tactics that can be implemented later on when the business moves to the next growth phase.”

He further explains that there are two categories of mobile marketing tactics that SMEs should focus on. “There are easily doable, affordable mobile marketing tactics that should be implemented immediately and there are more expensive, state-of-the-art mobile tactics that can be implemented later on when the business moves to the next growth phase.”

Easy wins in line with the former include a scaled-down mobile friendly version of the SME’s website, a dashboard-driven bulk SMS campaign, mobile discount coupons delivered via text message or over-the-top social messaging platform, QR (Quick Response) codes and reaching out to current customers to build a mobile database. Next-level mobile tech tactics in line with the latter include the real mobile bells and whistles including augmented (AR) reality and virtual reality (VR) to enhance the customer experience, location-based marketing and mobile-enabled payment options for client convenience.

“For SME’s, mobile technology is a gift just waiting to be unwrapped, and it needn’t cost the earth,” concludes Mr Laws.

By Mike Laws, founding Managing Director of Imaginatrix

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