American Marketer


Making mobile advertising work – after the click

June 15, 2012

Eric Harber is chief operating officer of Hipcricket


By Eric Harber
There is a popular television campaign for a certain diet beverage now featuring a protagonist who expresses his desire for more simply by saying, “And?”

Through this one word – and a raised eyebrow – he has gotten himself not just a job, but a corner office. Not just a date, but a date with the most beautiful woman. Not just a diet soda, but the best-tasting diet soda.

It is a relatively clever way of showing how there’s always more that can be had, even by just asking one word.

And now …
When conducting mobile advertising, brands should be asking that one-word question: “And … ?”

Yes, in and of themselves, mobile ad programs are great.

You may be presenting a nice-looking banner on the small device that is always at arm’s length. And someone may click on an ad or install an application and be presented with something small – a bigger version of a logo, maybe the mobile Web site, a landing page with a lightweight offer, or even a nifty mobile application.

And … ?

Well, for many mobile ad networks, it is sort of ended here – with the click or the app install. Mission accomplished?


It is about what happens after the consumer does something—click on an ad or download an app.

Most marketers are leaving a huge opportunity on the table, an important chance to engage with the customer, post-activity. The click or install is not the end – it is the beginning of the relationship, if you shepherd it well.

The post-activity piece is about permission-based re-engagement where you create an ongoing relationship that happens after the click or download that allows you to connect with this customer in a way that is contextual and appealing to them and ultimately lucrative for you.

Why not offer the consumer a coupon, a promotion, or an opportunity to sign up for your email newsletter, or your CRM loyalty program? Convince them that more interaction is better, and incent them accordingly.

With this post-click engagement, your CRM programs are getting pushed all the way to the edge, into your customer’s pocket.

With their permission, capture valuable data from your post-click mobile interactions that ties into broader CRM initiatives—and empowers you to maximize every interaction of post-click engagement. This data is invaluable—and completely lost if you are focused only on that first interaction.

And … ?

Make everything after the click or install count, so they are actually enjoying the process of being marketed to—so they are looking forward to hearing from you on their mobile device.

WE HAVE DONE surveys the past five years that have shown that customers are still waiting for their favorite brands to reach out to them on their mobile devices.

Brands are finally getting the message, and increasing their mobile marketing and advertising spend while ensuring that it is part of a broader, cross-channel initiative.

We have come a long way, but there is still a long way to go. The next time you are considering a mobile advertising buy, if clicks or downloads are being touted as the goal, do not be afraid to ask, “And … ?”

Eric Harber is chief operating officer of Hipcricket, Kirkland, WA. Reach him at