Magazine article Marketing

Marketing Promotion: Mobile Hands Social Power to Its Users

Magazine article Marketing

Marketing Promotion: Mobile Hands Social Power to Its Users

Article excerpt

A Marketing promotion in association with Yomego.

Smartphones and social media have a symbiotic relationship, with both feeding off each other. The latest Social Monitor finds out which brands are making the most of the link.

This year is predicted to be the year of mobile in marketing, and for once, the prediction will probably come true.

Sales of smartphones accelerated last year, meaning they now account for more than half of mobiles in the UK. Interaction with social media has been one of the great drivers of mobile internet use. In order to assess how socially adept handset brands are, social media specialist Yomego carried out research into the top 10 bestselling mobile handsets.

One of the first things that is apparent is the very high level of satisfaction across the board for all models surveyed. All registered above 70/100 on this metric. Mobile handsets have become almost like cars in the sort of brand identification that they elicit from users Owners are also incredibly passionate about their phones, as evidenced by the number of fan pages.

Forums and message boards also perform a valuable role in helping consumers get the most from their phones, troubleshoot any problems, and find out about new apps they can use.

It is perhaps no surprise that the phone with the highest social media ranking (SMR) is the iPhone 4S. It is the top-selling model surveyed, and created more mentions than the other nine handsets combined - testament to Apple's brand supremacy.

What is more surprising is that this is on the back of no official social involve-ment by the iPhone/Apple brand itself.

The void is filled by fan sites and tweeters, and fans of other phones. The iPhone is the clear benchmark in the sector, with every other model receiving a high number of posts comparing it with the iPhone.

A high number of authors have been suspended from Twitter because of the appeal of Apple products to spammers. This may partly explain Apple's reticence about getting involved in an area where it will struggle to exert close control.

Other brands have been much more embracing of social channels. Nokia uses Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Foursquare to engage with a global audience.

Craig Hepburn, Nokia global director, social media, says the channel is about the amplification of storytelling. 'It's no longer good enough to push a message in one direction. You need to have a conversation that inspires and engages your consumers and fans to respond or feed back.'

Nokia's Lumia 800 had the highest satisfaction rating of any brand, but its reach pulled its overall ranking down slightly. A projection mapping event featuring Deadmau5 DJing in front of Millbank Tower registered highly on social, but fell just outside the assessment period.

Hepburn says that abovethe-line communications such as TV and print will still play a key role in marketing. 'Social media sits really well next to traditional marketing channels as a way to create feedback loops and engage-ment beyond core marketing messages or creative. The use of hashtags on Twitter or running competitions or feedback responses on Facebook can create a stream of conversations.'

HTC has put social at the heart of its latest marketing strategy, 'As Recommended By', which aims to harn-ess personal experiences and turn them into recommendations from real people.

James Atkins, HTC head of marketing, UK and Ireland, says: 'As a brand that has always put consumers at the heart of our product innovation, we view direct engagement with our customers via social media as an extension of this philosophy.'

The first iteration of this approach is a multimedia campaign that features a photography student undertaking a fashion shoot and uploading the resulting images while skydiving.

'The campaign embraces real people's first-hand experiences of the HTC One smartphone and allows them to use social media to share their impressions with the world. …

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