Mobile Marketing Poised to Take Off (Again)

There’s an interesting article on Mobile Marketing by David Fuller at Despite the problems of the industry, he claims, 2005 is poised to be the year that Mobile Marketing finally takes off. This is backed by Gartner – but don’t forget they want to sell reports and saying it won’t take off, won’t sell any.

I agree with his analysis of why that it’s been slow to get traction within the marketing community; that suppliers focus on technology not marketing, that things always take longer than you think, and that it tends to be seen as a stand alone discipline.

I’d add a few more; that marketers, contrary to popular opinion tend to be risk averse and conservative. And that no bona fide discipline in the agency world (advertising, Interactive, Direct Marketing, Promotional Marketing) has claimed it as its own and given it that credibility. And that the advertising world especially is scared shitless about its accountability.

Mobile Marketing can only come into its own when a client can brief his agency and have mobile included as part of the response. Having specialist mobile marketing companies approach clients direct is simply confusing and muddying the water.

The disciple that should be taking this on is either Promotional Marketing, Direct Marketing or both. They have the understanding of how to create customer dialogue that is still lacking in so many ad agencies, who are wedded to one way lectures via dying media. And they live with accountability as a fact of life.

I certainly share David’s hope that 2005 will be the year. But I’ve been trying to believe that every year for the last 5 and I fear we’re far from mainstream yet.

Apart from a competition fulfilment channel for sales promotion – a commodity driven, price sensitive and ultimately rather boring sector to be involved with – Mobile Marketing has some time in the waiting room yet.

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