Delta’s newest perk is better than free booze – it’s free in-flight mobile messaging!
The airline company announced Wednesday that customers on its Wi-Fi enabled planes will be able to communicate via WhatsApp, iMessage, and Facebook Messenger at no charge.
“We know many of Delta’s customers want or need to stay connected in the air and on the ground, which is why we’re investing in an easy, free way to send and receive messages inflight through some of the most popular global platforms.” – Tim Mapes, CMO at Delta
Mobile messaging has become an attractive channel for business professionals to quickly exchange information with 80 percent of people using text messaging for business. Messaging applications like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, SnapChat, We Chat, and others have over 2 billion users globally. As adoption of SMS and mobile messaging tools continues to rise, it has opened up a plethora of low-cost, high-return channels for B2B marketers to engage prospects.
If you are a marketer who values effective and real-time communications, it’s vital to get in the mobile messaging game now. As you consider jumping in, it’s critically important to understand how to message your audience in a way that provides value and isn’t intrusive or interruptive.
Here are a few statistics that highlight the growing impact of mobile messaging:
- The average Millennial exchanges an average of 67 text messages per day
- American women text 14% more than men
- 79% of companies believe customers want SMS/text support (ICMI)
- Over 80% of people use text messaging for business, and 15% said that more than half their messages are for business purposes (eWeek)
- 72% of business professionals prefer texting to messaging apps (eWeek)
Marketing through messaging originated under the umbrella of social media but has morphed into an entirely different platform. The Wall Street Journal calls this new form of brand and consumer communication “chatvertising.” While social media drives branded content to a consumer, in messaging applications the content is mainly conversational. It involves shorter messages, specifically aligned with your brand story, delivered one at a time.
Because conversations are personalized interactions, it is critically important that you align the dialogue with your audience. Here are a few tips to get started with your mobile messaging marketing strategy.
1. Pick your Poison
To address this emerging, and massive, discipline, you first have to examine how “chatvertising” fits into your brand’s marketing strategy. How will mobile messaging improve your customer’s experience with your brand?
How will it get you closer to your brand destination?
Once you have identified how mobile messaging fits into your marketing strategy, you’ll have to identify where your audience wants to chat. Is the ideal channel text message, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, or WeChat? You have to be in the right place in order to deliver the right message at the right time.
Marketing budgets and resources aren’t unlimited. Therefore, if you do decide that a bright shiny object is worth chasing, then something has to drop off your marketing plate to take on something new. Don’t Get Killed by Trends: 6 Critical Things to Consider Before Chasing Bright Shiny Objects
2. Make Messaging a Habit
Did you know the average adult spends a total of 23 hours a week texting, while individual text messages are read on average in under five seconds?
“Mobile Messaging is rapidly becoming the primary way users engage socially on mobile.” – Keith Teare
Adopting mobile messaging as a marketing strategy is a significant commitment. In order to be successful, mobile messaging needs to be made a habit within your organization. Remember how your organization had to adapt to engaging on Twitter and Facebook? You need to build up your messaging muscles and keep them in shape with regular use.
3. Measure your Mobile Messaging
As technology advances, marketers are finding better, more reliable tracking capabilities for their messaging efforts. Compared to digital marketing and social media, mobile messaging has much higher engagement and return on marketing investment.
Snapchat, for example, has made large strides in its ad measurement tools. Heavily criticized for poor tracking capabilities in the past, the platform currently tracks brand awareness, purchase intent, conversions, and app install performance data. It’s testing audience targeting capabilities for up to 60 groups based on the content viewed in the publisher’s section.
For mobile messaging to be an effective customer engagement strategy, it must be non-disruptive and a part of the dialogue. Before adding another tool to your marketing toolbox, it is essential that you are able to tell a simple brand story and clearly align it with your brand strategy and systems.
Learn how transformational leaders use the power of story, strategy, and systems to drive innovation and create remarkable customer experiences. Download our ebook – Transformational Marketing: Moving to the TopRight.
Photo credit: Flickr