Permission marketing: through the eyes of the different stakeholders in a mobile marketing service
By Lisa Ciangiulli, Optism Team, Jul 13, 2010
In a recent blog, we reiterated the importance of permission to the success of mobile marketing. We also need to consider what permission means to each member of the ecosystem: mobile operators, consumers, and advertisers.
For mobile operators, getting peoples’ permission before introducing a mobile advertising service is mandatory in ensuring a non-intrusive experience. Operators can’t just assume that their customers are interested in receiving ads on the most personal device that they own.
Mobile operators enjoy an advantage over others in the ecosystem and that is their direct relationship with customers. These customers must be able to trust a mobile operator to protect their privacy and respect their right to determine what appears on their mobile; otherwise the risk is that they will move on to an operator they can trust. From deep insight into this mindset, we see there is an overwhelming attitude of “If you show us that we can trust you, we’ll be more inclined to share additional information with you and to be receptive to other service offers you might have”.
Unlike earlier generations, consumers are now extremely empowered. Technology and innovation provides us with tools, platforms and channels that make it possible for us to bring our opinions and concerns to the widest possible audience. We’ve already talked about how, as individuals, we expect to be asked permission as a matter of respect. We wouldn’t accept someone intruding into our other personal spaces — our homes or cars for example — without asking permission. And we won’t accept that kind of behaviour on our mobiles, which are an extension of our personal space.
We also need to be able to control the situation for which we give permission. With mobile advertising, this means that we must understand exactly what it is that we are giving permission for, and that we know how to retract that permission, should we want to do so. Of course, in addition to control and trust, we need to be offered something that is of value to us, something that makes it worth our while to invite advertisers into our world.
For advertisers, having our permission to begin the conversation increases the likelihood that we’ll listen to you. Take it a step further and ask us what our interests are and you’ll start to build a community of trust. As Jonathan MacDonald points out in The Communication Ideal, “As we all reduce our need to filter, our trust in such commercial communication will grow.” For brands, gaining access to mobile consumers provides an unprecedented opportunity to reach a massive, tuned-in audience with targeted messages that can trigger ongoing dialogue, turning one-way communication into conversation.
Permission, along with preferences, ensures that marketing efforts aren’t wasted and provides a path for a better ROI. Permission is the starting point in an ongoing exchange between all members of the ecosystem and we believe it is a necessary precursor to genuine engagement marketing.
Next time, we’ll look at some best practices for getting permission.