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Consumers are ready for mobile marketing – and it all starts with text, finds Placecast study

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With 224 million mobile users engaged in texting, SMS has emerged as “the only form of mobile marketing to reach the entire mobile universe,” says a study into mobile marketing and retail published this week by Placecast, the company behind ShopAlerts.

A Harris Poll on behalf of Placecast, found that 45% of 18 to 34 year-olds and 35% of 35 to 44 year olds were interested in receiving opt-in mobile alerts.

“Mobile phones now have consumer penetration rates that surpass the Internet, and marketers need to grasp the implications of ‘go-anywhere media,’ which is what mobile phones represent,” says Kathryn Koegel, President of Primary Impact Research, which conducted the study. “Consumers use their phones to do everything from research products to check competitor retail pricing – even from within store locations,” she continues.

The report centres itself around the now widely acknowledged belief that, thanks to the smartphone become much more ubiquitous, more consumers are starting to ‘get’ mobile media, mobile marketing and, as a result, mobile commerce. The growing consumption of media via mobile is also seeing media tastes change, suggests the report, with more consumers being prepared to stomach more promotional-led media content on their mobile device.

The report also points out that consumers’ mobile devices are, more often than not, now ‘always on’ and they are not phased by receiving location relevant text information and offers.

Oh, and don’t go thinking text is just for your teenage kids: growing numbers of 44 to 65 year olds are tapping away too.

As an independent resource for developers and consumers, 1020 Placecast provides location-based services which mark a turning point in location-based advertising. “Research and insights are a great way of accelerating the attraction of marketing spend to mobile and location-based offerings. We are excited about the findings in this report, and committed to working with the entire ecosystem to attract more marketing spend to the space,” says Alistair Goodman, CEO of Placecast.

Earlier this year, the company announced the launch of ShopAlerts, an opt-in program which delivers messages about sales to consumers as they enter a “geo-fence” surrounding a physical location. Key findings from the Placecast ShopAlerts case study (included in the “Retail Goes Mobile” report) show that 75% of users found messages somewhat to very useful, and 73% would definitely or probably use ShopAlerts in the future.

Most recently, Placecast announced their Match API, a free tool that enables location content providers and location-based application developers to refer to a location in any number of ways, and validate that those references resolve to one true location on the planet. The implications that ShopAlerts and Match have for the retail ecosystem are numerous, including an increased focus on improving LBS services and attracting marketing spend.

Click here for a free download of “Retail Goes Mobile”

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