Permission marketing in the news – Looking at permission from different angles
By Optism Team, Jul 8, 2011
This week’s roundup zeroes in on different aspects of permission. What can you do to make sure your opt-in process doesn’t cost you audience members? Are you maximizing the value of social media tools to build an opted in audience? When people give you permission, you’re supposed to deliver value. Are you keeping up your end of the bargain?
The European Union is encouraging its member countries to require businesses to seek consumer opt-in before tracking them online. However, as reported by Business2Community columnist Elle Woulfe, implementing this requirement can have a huge impact on a business. The article cites the example of the United Kingdom’s Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO). Ninety percent of the ICO’s visitors failed to opt in, which meant that the organization lost its ability to track a huge portion of its potential clients. As a result, they weren’t able to collect the kind of information that would help them enhance their services. This steep drop-off, suggests Woulfe, underscores “the need for businesses to clearly and compellingly explain why they want to track visitors’ online behaviour to deliver only relevant content.” Make sure people understand your explanations by testing different messaging to determine what works best.
As followers of Permission marketing in the news know, we’ve recently been featuring chapter reviews of Seth Godin’s seminal work, Permission Marketing. In a blog post this week, Seth adds some fresh perspective on the themes first explored in Permission Marketing. He reminds us how important it is to “pay attention to the attention economy.” Attention, he says, is “a bit like real estate, in that they’re not making any more of it.” So it’s even more important today to maximize the return on your attention investments. He suggests we ask ourselves some hard questions. “When we fail to ask for (and reward) the privilege of following up, are we wasting permission?” “Does launching this product to an audience of strangers waste the attention we’re going to have to buy?” The attention economy, Seth notes, “keeps going up in value.” We need to make every investment count.
Blogger Daniel Sanchez also pays homage to Seth’s Permission Marketing and some of its key ideas around permission versus interruption marketing. Sanchez goes on to provide concrete advice on how marketers today can reach people with “something of value.” To maximize the impact of social marketing tools like Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to reach new audiences, he encourages marketers to populate these sites with content that is relevant to their business and of value to their audience. To substantiate the importance of reaching people through social media, Sanchez includes a link to a recent infographic from Mashable that analyzes “what makes people want to follow a brand?” A key takeaway from the infographic? A huge majority of respondents (97.09%) said yes when asked if an online experience influenced their decision to buy a product or service from a brand. Both Sanchez’s suggestions and the infographic are good reading.
Technorati author Amanda Brandon has some concrete advice for marketers wishing to avoid “SPAM – SMS Marketing’s Mortal Enemy.” Her list of don’ts includes don’t send too many messages and don’t send pointless messages to your opted-in audience. Segment your lists so you can be strategic about what messages you send to which customers. The all-important do’s include setting limits – such as only messaging once a week – so customers will expect and welcome your messages. Another key best practice: “Tell customers what to expect. When discussing the benefits of your texting program with potential opt-ins, tell them exactly what to expect… This sets the expectation and gives them the benefits of signing up.” We couldn’t agree more.
Exciting news out of Nigeria, as reported in BusinessDay: the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) plans to open a West African office in Nigeria early next year. As we’ve seen in last week’s report on MobileGroove and earlier Permission marketing blogs, Africa represents a huge opportunity for mobile marketers. As BusinessDay reports, “With more than 90 million mobile phone users and over 50 percent penetration, Nigeria is said to possess the capability to pioneer mobile marketing in Africa.” Clearly, the opening of an MMA office in Nigeria is a strategic move. As Terry Murphy, general manager of the MMA in South Africa puts it, ““The use of mobile marketing continues to grow globally as does the need and desire for the MMA to help provide structure for that growth. It is no longer a question of ‘why’ mobile should be used to guide marketing approaches, but ‘how.’ We are therefore excited to be driving its development in a region which has already profiled a number of industry leading campaigns.” The expansion of the MMA’s presence in Africa is a sure way to promote its mobile marketing Code of Conduct in this important market. We look forward to the opening of this new office.