Plain old email marketing not sexy enough for you? Bored with your nonprofit’s Facebook page? Really want to be on the marketing front edge?Then mobile marketing is for you! Whether it’s for any of your core constituency, today, is another matter entirely.Still, it’s always fun to get a glimpse of the future — the return of the phone — as seen by commercial marketers. Here’s a good discussion of mobile marketing (i.e., interactive messaging via cellphones, PDAs, etc) recently conducted with four “experts” (usually The Agitator reserves that term for folks who done something, successfully, for ten years) under the auspices of Ad Age.The article starts off a bit slowly … indeed leaving me wondering, as I read the pitfalls and technical challenges, “Are consumers really interested in getting bombarded with ads on their cellphones?”But eventually the experts get around to offering useful insights as to what might work in this highly intrusive and high immediacy medium. For example …“Ultimately, a consumer is looking for one of three things. They’re either looking for information that they’re in need of — sort of the utility piece of mobile. Then there’s entertainment, something that’s going to engage, surprise and delight them. Or what we’re seeing more and more of in mobile is that community piece, of how do you start getting conversations going, start building interaction between people using their mobile devices? It is ultimately where mobile started out, right? It’s a communication tool.”Most fun example I read was a billboard that posed a question and gave a number to call/text to record your response … the billboard then displayed the changing results in realtime. Cool! Imagine if that billboard were on display in Times Square, NYC and similar locations around the country, and asked which candidate’s “political lipstick” punchline you liked best? Would probably be an accurate predictor of the campaign winner!Towards the end of the piece, there’s a fascinating set of examples of mobile campaigns these guys have undertaken. Best part of the story.Tom

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