It's OK if you're not obsessed with mobile social media. I know I
can get carried away, whether I'm spilling my Super
Mayor confessions or taking too much pride in becoming the King
of Disinfectant (take that, Lysol serfs!). Less publicly, I spent the
summer working with my colleagues on 360i's Mobile
Marketing Playbook that was just released today, which includes a meaty
chapter on mobile social media.
Whether you're already sold on its importance or still could use
more convincing, here are 10 reasons to love mobile social media.
still early. You're often dealing with consumers who are early
adopters, and there's room to experiment. In such an environment, the upside of
doing something groundbreaking tends to outweigh the downside of a flop, as
long as it's planned to fit in with your goals and strategy.
mainstream. Facebook reports it has more than 150 million
active mobile users globally. Are we there yet? Yes, we're there.
real — as in, it's part of the real world. You use
mobile social media in conjunction with where you are and whatever you're
doing, not just while you're online.
brings people together in the real world. I remember years ago
when I was demonstrating Twitter to a friend at a 4INFO party. After I sent a
tweet via text message, someone came up to me and asked if I was David. Sure
enough, it was a Twitter follower who caught my note saying I was at the party,
and she wanted to make a real-world connection. Fast-forward to a few
weeks ago. I was in Portland, Ore. waiting on line at Voodoo Doughnuts when I
checked Facebook Places and saw that my New York friend Mike Lee was having
Chinese food nearby. I texted him and he came over before I made it to the
front of the line. When these moments happen, they're memorable because they
strangers sometimes know best. Some people wonder why anyone
would trust tips left by complete strangers through review sites and apps.
Given that we trust mysterious algorithms to tell us which search engine
results are relevant and we trust four out of five guys in lab coats on TV with
their toothpaste recommendations, following tips random people leave at
restaurants and bars is hardly a stretch. I can rattle off great foods —
deviled eggs and bacon scones in New York, apple turnovers in San Francisco,
grape-flavored doughnuts in Portland — I've tried thanks to recommendations
from people I don't know.
games are better with friends. The Words With Friends
application became a massive hit by turning a mobile version of Scrabble into a
multiplayer obsession. I wish all my favorite game apps, such as Angry Birds, had
a social layer.
Real-world sharing is the best kind. I was just having drinks
with MediaPost columnist Kaila Colbin and our valiant editor Phyllis Fine when
the conversation ultimately turned to Cat Paint, an app I hailed as a
"social media breakthrough" late last year. As I always do in such
situations, I shared my favorite Cat Paint creations like a father who passes
around baby pictures (someday, when I have kids, I will have to Cat Paint them
so I can do both at once). While I can share the pictures through various
social media sites, it's far more fun in a live setting.
mobile site or application can incorporate social media. Any
mobile content worth sharing can be shared, whether through third-party
registration such as Facebook Connect or links to post content to various
canvas keeps getting bigger. Mobile social media is starting to
change how people watch TV and movies, interact with products, find new
businesses, determine directions to the store, and find the nearest bathroom.
The use cases grow by the day.
you can't beat it, join it. Beyond the 150 million Facebook
mobile users — a figure which is clearly much higher since Facebook last
updated it — consider the 60% of mobile internet usage spent on social
networking (Ground Truth) and the 240% increase in social networking app
usage year over year (comScore). Like it, love it, or remain totally baffled by
it, but as a consumer trend it's here. Marketers, it's your call whether to
ignore or embrace mobile social media.