What is SoMoLo and why is it important to marketers? I have been writing and speaking on this topic for a while now.
Social Local Mobile
Most of the time I am making a case for taking advantage of the marketing opportunity that can be found where these three (social, mobile and local) overlap. In this post, I am going to take a slightly different approach. I want to share some recent learning.
There’s a subtle nuance I’m wondering if you caught onto–did you notice the reversal of the words Local and Mobile? As a company, when referring to SoMoLo, we’ve historically done it in just that order, but for now, we’ve decided to refer to it not as SoMoLo, but as SoLoMo (with Mobile occupying last position).
Why we are switching to SoLoMo?
When I decided to focus my writing on SoMoLo, I researched the topic and found there wasn’t a lot of material. I would see the occasional #SoMoLo hashtag. At first there were, of course, different configurations of the three–but no one particular configuration appeared to be more popular than the others.
Recently this has changed. Beginning late last fall there was a significant increase in search traffic for the term SoLoMo.
Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is a significant factor in any SoLoMo strategy; with the current rapidly changing marketing landscape, one can argue it’s an important element of any marketing strategy.
Since SoLoMo strategies are consumer focused, one must be vigilant and ready to adapt. So we are adapting. Whether your focus is on keyword research or the latest in Linked In evolution, Adapting to Change in Social Media is a mandatory.
But SoMoLo or SoLoMo seems like such a trivial thing
Search Engine Marketing is designed to attract prospects and customers to your site by understanding their terminology. The idea is to study and understand how consumers go about searching for your particular product or service.
Online marketers spend a lot of time trying to figure out how search engines, like Google for example, return search results. When I key in SoLoMo into the Google search, what results do I see?
It turns out the order of words and terms is very important. While I will get similar results for SoLoMo or SoMoLo, ultimately there are more results for the former.
Social Local Mobile Marketing is a Growing Trend
The uptick in traffic for the SoLoMo term is an indicator that more content is being generated on this very important concept. With a great deal of attention focused on mobile marketing, it’s important to understand that mobile is often social, and by virtue of the first two, it’s also local.
As marketers, we have to guard against tactical approaches that focus on the technology. Recently, someone in my network posted an image of a Foursquare promotion that lacked any specific offer. In fact, the communication only offered what was available to anyone in the restaurant.
While this may seem harmless enough, it’s an indication that some marketers are simply taking their existing materials and randomly posting it to different platforms. Marketers carelessly hopping on social platforms are playing with fire…in an age where consumers’ voices are far-reaching and brands aren’t living up to their expectations, it’s easy for a brand to dig their own hole.
Social Local Mobile Requires New Customer Centric Thinking
In the example above, what if the marketers had first asked some curious questions. Questions like:
- Why would someone want to check in (the process of letting those in your network know where you are)?
- What value can we offer to someone willing to check in?
- What else are we doing? For example what are our current promotions? Could we adapt these?
- How can we make these people feel special? Give them something they will want to share?
While you may argue that these questions could apply to traditional marketing, keep in mind the context of the situation. A potential prospect or customer is either deciding where they want to go or they are at your place of business deciding what to buy. In this moment, what will they find relevant and helpful, perhaps even fun?
Mobile Local Social is Dynamic
Changing from SoMoLo to SoLoMo may not seem like a big deal, but it does highlight the fact that our hyper-connected consumers are at the helm. Marketers who work to maintain control will be increasingly irrelevant.
Marketers who remain vigilant and agile will enjoy a competitive advantage.
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