Bricks-​and-​Mortar Stores Should Be Marketing Their Mobile Apps

BY Courtney Huckabay
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"Any all-​digital business can benefit from adding an app to the marketing mix," Nabeena Mali writes for AppInstitute. "But bricks-​and-​sticks businesses can enjoy equal – even greater – gains. With tech ever-​advancing and developers getting ever more creative, this list barely scratches the surface."

AppInstitute put together some revenue-​building mobile-​marketing strategies for small businesses. Here are some ways to make mobile apps work for category segments.

  • Retail – this one’s obvious, but retailers are getting super-​creative. Think augmented reality, location-​based (and location-​affiliate!) marketing, plus now only, in-​store/​online offers and more. And remember: mobile shoppers spend more.
  • Restaurants – every restaurant should have an app. It’s a direct pipeline to customers who have plenty of options and often buy on impulse. Fill seats by offering location-​based specials via notification – even use your customer database to promote meals specifically tuned to individual tastes.

Businesses should consider the consumers who use their mobile devices while watching TV. Advertising on television as well as through mobile can ensure this audience is engaged with a brand. The newest AudienceSCAN survey showed 58% of Americans are consuming media this way – and we refer to them as Distracted TV Watchers.

  • Hotels & Tourism – travelers don’t always know what’s available. Your app can help them find not just you (and reserve their spot easily), but other, non-​competing activities they might enjoy. This can lead to some lucrative, yet cost-​effective, partnerships and co-​marketing as well as an improved experience for users.
  • Car/​Auto Dealerships – unless you’re selling Lamborghinis, buying a vehicle most often requires a long-​ish sales cycle for consumer goods. People do their homework, researching various makes and models to find the best fit. Help them – feature your new or on-​sale models, GEO listings in their area, and book viewings with a quick tap.

Distracted TV Watchers could be using apps to search for new vehicles or planning vacations while their favorite shows are on TV. The latest AudienceSCAN study found 36% of Distracted TV Watchers are planning trips to the beach this year.

  • Real estate agencies – help prospective homeowners see all your (and only your) listings at a glance, filter them down by any criteria they like, and book a viewing all in a few taps. They’ll save tons of time and you or your agents will show – and sell – more properties more efficiently by eliminating showings of properties that don’t fit the bill.
  • Contractors & Tradespeople – make consults push-​button simple, get more service bookings, keep clients updated on their project’s progress, and even create your own real-​time messaging centers for your long-​term projects. You can feature in-​app quoting abilities and a secure repository for documentation.

Just think of the tie-​ins for HGTV watchers and mobile apps for realtors and contractors! The most recent AudienceSCAN research revealed Distracted TV Watchers are 17% more likely than average consumers to buy a new house this year.

"With desktops fading away, mobile is an absolutely essential part of any modern marketing strategy. Alas, there’s no one-​size-​fits-​all answer," Mali writes. However, the experts at AppInstitute recommend to "track the ways your customers engage with you, provide more opportunities to do so on mobile devices (through a mobile-​ready website, free mobile application, and mobile advertising), and carefully transition more of your marketing budget into what works best for you. Rinse, repeat, and optimize."

AudienceSCAN data is available for your applications and dashboards through the SalesFuel API. Media companies and agencies can access AudienceSCAN data through the AudienceSCAN Reports in AdMall.