No sooner did we start getting comfortable with incorporating social networks into our daily work as UW marketers/communicators then another medium starts vying for our limited attention and resources—and that medium is mobile devices. But just like any other shiny new toy, we’d be doing ourselves and our constituents a disservice if we chase after it just because it’s pretty.
This article (called “Attention, marketers: Please don’t ruin mobile!”) on the Mobile Marketer Web site provides some helpful insights that are important to bear in mind before you begin sketching out a mobile marketing strategy for your unit. Though it’s aimed at for-profit businesses, it makes points that are relevant to us, such as this one:
“A mobile device is a very personal, intimate part of a person’s life. You have to push yourself to answer the question, ‘Is this idea going to improve my customer’s mobile experience?’ Are you going to be interrupting them or providing value?”
The author goes on to give a great example of a company he thinks is managing to market itself mobily and add value: Charmin, the toilet tissue company, has branded a mobile app that allows people to find and rate public bathrooms. As the article author puts it: “It is simple, on-brand and very useful for their customers – a complete home run.”