Checklist: The Essentials of Mobile Marketing Automation - 8 Things to Consider When Choosing an MMA tool

Checklist: The Essentials of Mobile Marketing Automation (MMA)

8 Things to Consider When Choosing an MMA Tool

Mobile Marketing Automation Solution Checklist

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The daunting challenge is that customers are moving to mobile way faster than the brands are. Two stats from Gartner tell the story. Today, mobile represents about 50% of a company’s audience but only 17% of their budgets. And by 2017, they predict mobile engagement behaviors will drive more than 50% of e-commerce revenue. Marketers will seriously need to catch up. Mobile Marketing Automation gives them tools do that.

But, marketers are being bombarded with hundreds of solutions all claiming similar things. With so much chatter, it’s hard to separate the signal from the noise. Over the years by working with leaders such as Renault, Louis Vuitton, Cartier and more, we’ve compiled an essential checklist of must-haves for a strong mobile marketing automation solution. There are eight elements that you should always consider:

  1. Is it rich enough?

    Does the solution offer you a variety of options for your engagement campaigns? Does it have capabilities beyond sending basic push-notifications? There are many times when sending a push notification is exactly the right tactic – when you are an airline and you want to efficiently inform a customer of a gate change. But not everyone signs up for push notifications – you can only send them to those who do. Then, you might look to employ in-app messages, sent in context and personalized to an individual “mobile moment.”

  2. Is it powerful enough?

    Does the solution have the power you need to run truly contextual and personalized mobile campaigns? Be sure to understand the different ways messages can be sent. Are you only able to schedule and send batch messages or can your customer’s actions trigger targeted messages? Also, it’s important that you make sure messages can be triggered by actions happening inside your app and outside your app.

  3. Is it real time?

    Granted, everyone who you meet will say their mobile marketing platform performs in real time. The first word out of your mouth should be “really”, followed by “prove it”. Split seconds matter in mobile when you have – or miss – an opportunity because of how swiftly you and your technology can act. Real real-time through Mobile Marketing Automation is what you are after. As an example, FollowAnalytics’ platform combines geolocation capabilities with triggers, which allows for relevant messaging like a discount coupon for a specific pair of jeans that a user browsed on an app, right when they walk by the item. Many solutions claim to be real-time and offer geolocation, but their technology is built in a way that requires the trigger of “entering a certain geo” to be reported back to the server, and often this can take anywhere from an hour to more. In the case of FollowAnalytics, triggers are activated through the SDK rather than the server, eliminating the possibility of lag time.

  4. Is it friendly enough?

    Will your solution enable your marketing department to quickly and easily set up and run mobile engagement campaigns? Settle for nothing short of the ability to create scheduled campaigns (immediately or any time in the future); conceive trigger-based campaigns using data and logic from within the app or from an external system (CRM and more); and create “self-triggering” campaigns based on mobile consumer actions, behaviors and context. Also, you certainly don’t want to go to IT every time you want to send a push message. Be sure your solution is designed for marketers and does not require dev resources to create and execute campaigns.

  5. Is it quick?

    Knowing the importance of making a dramatic impact quickly, you certainly want to choose a partner that can get you on the road to reaching your business goals. Often mobile marketing solutions will promise a quick SDK implementation, but what they don’t tell you is how time and resource intensive implementing tagging plans can be. It’s not enough to know that you can implement an SDK in under 5 minutes when it takes up to 2 months to get a tagging plan in place.

  6. Is it connected?

    Does the solution you are looking at offer fast and easy connections to your existing customer data systems? Sure, you are up to the task to work with your IT colleagues, but it is cumbersome at best and prohibitive at worst if you have to rely on your tech team too much. As you seek out the Mobile Marketing Automation system for you, look for out-of-the-box connectors to existing customer data systems like traditional Marketing Automation, CRM, Business Intelligence platforms and more. The more easy connectivity your MMA platform offers, the better your data and campaigns will be.

  7. Is it smart?

    A good solution will have a very strong combination of powerful analytics that are optimized by machine learning. The most impactful mobile programs often have human and machine elements. There is no arguing the value of a data scientist, but there frequently is critical lag time between a consumer interaction and an interpretation of the data by a scientist. Instead, look for an easily digestible dashboard as well as a Mobile Marketing Automation platform that informs marketers in real time about what is going on and what should happen next.

  8. Is it scalable and secure?

    Ask whether the vendor has a fast and fully managed data warehouse built for large volumes of data as well as whether the company has a tested methodology that allows you to scale quickly and take on any amount of growth. Make sure you look at their existing customers to see that they are trusted by reputable companies.

Amy Abascal
Head of Corporate Marketing at FollowAnalytics
Amy Abascal heads up Corporate & Americas Marketing for FollowAnalytics out of their San Francisco office. When she's not focusing on funnel optimization, you can find her hanging out in the SF Mission district with her dog and a pair elderly cats. She loves cooking, wine, gardening and welding big art.
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