At Unique Influence, we provide a wide variety of user acquisition services. Mobile, search, SEO, affiliate; if a channel exists, we are working to master it for our clients.
Out of all these complicated channels, mobile is particularly misunderstood.
So when Lander, a great free platform that helps businesses create landing pages, invited me to participate in their webinar series “Lander Academy”, I wanted to share some of what I’ve learned over all my years working in mobile.
Mobile is a powerful marketing tool, and it is poised to just get bigger and bigger. In fact, in 2013 mobile will become the most popular way people access the web. There are a lot of exciting opportunities here, if you know how to find them.
Mobile is a nuanced field that can be easily complicated, so I focused on these seven easy-to-implement tips for improving mobile campaigns in 2013:
First of all, your tracking method will vary depending on which kind of mobile campaign you are working with. When you are buying advertising for a mobile optimized website, for example, you can tag different traffic you purchase with separate utm tags. By tracking these different tags with Google Analytics, you can develop a funnel and determine conversions.
Tracking for a mobile app will be more difficult. There is a lot of data here – customer retention, traffic, revenue driven – but there are some great ways to manage it all.
HasOffers gives you ability to track the ad source to the installs, and an ad network like InMobi can tag traffic coming in from other ad buys to see which source leads to installs. When you use these tracking systems, traffic is directed to them and then sent on to the app store. This will help you accurately determine cost per install. Flurry also provides a free way to track traffic, and best of all, you can see how that traffic performs over time because Flurry has a nice built-in analytics feature.
The truth is, tracking is challenging. Not a lot of people have it figured it out just yet. While it will take some time to get it right, there is a big opportunity here for you to pull ahead of the competition.
2. The Right Metrics
You can purchase traffic at different rates: costs per click (CPC), cost per thousand times (CPM), cost per install (CPI), or cost per acquisition (CPA). Which metric you choose depends on your specific goals.
Typically, you will purchase traffic on CPC or CPM, but in a direct response campaign, for instance, you will be concerned with what it costs to drive an acquisition or install. Since this method is meant to generate short-term value for the company, you should hold yourself to a specific return goal or traffic goal.
3. Choosing Advertising Sources
Now that you have determined the correct metrics for your campaign, you need to pick the right networks. Of course, the two big networks to buy traffic from are Google and Bing.
While Google does have a high CPC cost, you can use it for both app and mobile optimized website traffic. For app traffic, Google has an ad platform called AdMob that directs traffic to the app store. If you are trying to send traffic to a website, however, then you will use Google Adwords. This platform is the simplest and easiest way to buy traffic for mobile.
There are also a variety of mobile ad networks that you can use to buy traffic targeted at smartphone users. If you’re trying to drive app installs, then your best avenue will be to buy installs from one of these mobile ad networks.
4. Targeting Your Audience
Targeting is a powerful tool because it allows you to find people who are already interested in exactly what you have to offer. This is where your tracking will really pay off. Look at your ad buys and their costs per click, conversion rates, and costs per install. What aspects of that traffic are better than others? What apps are driving traffic and converting really well? Use this information to optimize, and you can bring your costs down.
You should be targeting across multiple dimensions, specifically toward demographics, device, and category. Networks will allow you to target to specific places, and in some cases can even target down to the city level.
There are a few options for targeting by device, like creating experiences for iPhone, iPad, and Android users. You can also target users by things they enjoy, like music or business. Always be sure to keep your eyes open for an underused opportunity; for example, if you create an experience for non-smartphone users that aren’t being targeted, you have found an advantage.
5. Compelling Ads
When you are creating ads and focusing primarily on the CPC, it can be tempting to put up ads that aren’t interesting. The justification here is that you will only be paying for clicks, so you can be less concerned with how many people see the ad. Not to mention that flat boring ads are easier to create.
This sort of thinking can be really counterproductive. Ad networks are designed to optimize themselves in order to make as much money as possible. This means that an ad with a high click-through rate will get shown more frequently, while an ad with a lower CTR will be shown less – and you will pay more.
All ad networks allow animated gif ads, and you can also consider creating a rich media ad. Flash ads will work on Apple devices and have a high click-through rate, though they are more expensive to produce. Video ad units will require some production commitment, but they are a great choice if you have a technical product to explain.
Remember to create a compelling call to action, and tell the customer exactly what they will get by following your ad. Ads with just a logo and a tagline don’t tell viewers why they should click. Customers won’t click without an incentive.
6. Mobile Optimized Website
Even though both are accessed with a mobile device, there is a big difference between a mobile website and a website that is optimized for mobile. The chief difference is that a mobile optimized website uses a responsive website. Content moves around as the screen expands and contracts, so it is viewable at different screen sizes.
While a mobile optimized website is a great tool (and provides a big opportunity, because most websites are not mobile optimized), a short-term solution for people with existing websites is to create a different version for mobile. Just be sure to consider what the mobile experience will be like, because a bad experience can cost you a sale.
7. Constantly Adjust
The key to a successful and efficient mobile campaign is to never stop testing, adjusting, and re-adjusting. This is why it is imperative that you include tracking information deep down into the funnel.
Ask yourself: What traffic leads to what action deeper in the funnel? Use Google Analytics and determine which ad serve sent you the really good converting users. Assess which devices are making what purchases, and track those purchases back to ad buys. Find out which sort of users are the ones that sticking with you, and find more.
Unique Influence takes a holistic approach to mobile. We’re not just buying media. We are taking a creative standpoint to determine how you can reach your goals at each stage of the funnel.
Click here to listen to my Lander Academy webinar.