Monthly Archives: September 2010

Is Bluetooth better than SMS Marketing?

Bluetooth vs SMS Mobile Phone Marketing.

I get asked this question a lot, so I have set out the differences between them, you can make up your mind which you think is better value for money and targets your customer directly.

What is Mobile Marketing?

Mobile Marketing is a set of practices that enables organisations to communicate and engage with their audience in an interactive and relevant manner through any mobile device or network.

Why use Mobile Marketing?

With over 60 Million mobile phone users in the UK it makes Mobile Marketing the most effective and cost efficient strategy available with a high Return on Investment (ROI) when used correctly.
MOBILE MARKETING FAQ’S What information can we send to people?

You can send a variety of rich media to consumers (images, text, videos, sound, games etc.) Contact can be made to promote and inform a customer of special offers, product information and event news.

What is Bluetooth Mobile Marketing?

Bluetooth Marketing is the localised wireless distribution of advertising content assocaited with a particulur place. Information can be pushed towards users who have their devices enabled for bluetooth and then transmitted once the user has agreed to receive. Information sent can be text, audio, images or video and will hold information that is place or time specific.

How many people use Bluetooth?

95% of mobile phones sold today are bluetooth enabled which has increased by 5% since 2008. Statistics show that over 70% of consumers leave their bluetooth switched on throughout the day and through incentives this number has potential to increase.

Where can we use Bluetooth?

Bluetooth technology can be used both indoors and outdoors with equal success. Areas such as retail centres, exhibitions, sports stadiums and public areas are ideal, but equally people use our solution for private networks and information distribution.

What does it cost to send and receive Bluetooth messages?

Bluetooth is free to use and therefore once you have invested in the equipment , training and maintainence solution the number of transmissions are free no matter whether it is 1 or 1 million people you connect with.

Is Bluetooth permission based?

Yes – All content is delivered on an opt-in permission basis. Unlike SMS and Email it is not technically possible to fully transmit content over Bluetooth without first receiving permission from the end user.

Are Bluetooth messages SPAM?

No – Because people have to give permission to receive data this means that only people who accept the transfer will receive it. The server recognises and saves any phones that have rejected a transfer to ensure that the message is not re-sent to them.

How much data can I send?

Files up to 1MB work better, files larger than this can take longer to transmit.

How many people can I contact via Bluetooth?

Our technology can link with up to 105 people simulteaneously every few seconds per broadcasting server. There is no limit as to how many contacts can be made
per day.

Can I manage my own campaign?

Yes – You can upload your own content and schedule the delivery by time, day and date.

Can I measure how successful the method is?

Yes – The server logs all downloaded messages, so you know exactly how many and which customers have received your marketing content. Reports can be pulled down in PDF, Excel or word format using different types of graph be it by time, campaign, product or daily reporting.

How far will the Bluetooth signal reach?

The standard rules are that delivery distance works based on 3 classes:
Class 1, up to 100 metres
Class 2, up to 10 metres
Class 3 up to 1 metre

Atenna Boosters can also be used to increase delivery distance.

Here at isend we work with a team of developers meaning there is no upper or lower limit on the distance that we can deliver Bluetooth messages to. We always advise that a more targeted strategy is more beneficial as the recipient is in the right area of the offer when they receive the data meaning data is kept relevant and in real time.

What is SMS Mobile Marketing?

Brands use this service to promote brand awareness, services, offers and products by sending out a text style message to the recipient.

Does it cost to receive a SMS message?

Most SMS providers require a fee for this service for each individual message. Costs are usually associated with competition, music or subscriptions of some sort. Whilst there is not much initial investment upfront for equipment (maybe software if you chose to self manage) the on going costs in relations to bluetooth can be quite expensive.

How effective is SMS Marketing?

Information from the Mobile Data Association (MDA) shows that circa 217 Million texts are sent daily in the UK meaning this is one of the more effective ways of communicating. Statistics also show that 75% of texts are read immediantly showing this as 4 times higher than email readings.

Can we send data to our existing customer base?

Yes – We have the knowledge and experience of database integration, so you can send out marketing offers to your existing customers who have given you their contact details and agreed for contact to be made.

How many SMS Messages can I send?

There is no limit on how many SMS messages you send, this is entirely up to the company as to how much you would like to budget for SMS marketing

How much information can I send in 1 SMS?

Here at Orgatise we use a credits facility for charging usage. 1 credit is 160 characters. There is no limit as to how many characters can be sent but we advise that less is more and information should be direct and straight to the point.

What is a SMS shortcode?

Short codes, also known as short numbers are special telephone numbers, significantly shorter than full telephone numbers that can be used to address SMS messages. Short codes are designed to be easier to read and remember than normal telephone numbers. Like telephone numbers, short codes are unique.

Smartphones to help visually impaired and elderly see

www.i-send.co

Retail Theraphy Bluetooth Style

A consultant from i-send came across a most recent press release by LookTel announcing that two mobile solutions companies, Ipplex and LinkMe Mobile, have partnered to create mobile applications for elderly and vision-impaired consumers.
“LookTel allows users to instantly interact with their world through their mobile phone – recognizing everyday objects such as text, money, packaged goods, CDs or medication bottles, even signs and landmarks,” explained Ipplex in a March 24 press release.

The application also provides additional support to the vision-impaired by way of live video, audio chat, push-to-talk audio, and GPS-tracking data.

Their groundbreaking application was selected as a finalist in the CTIA Wireless Emerging Technology Awards Healthcare/Public Safety/Transportation Category in 2010.

Augmented reality-like technology has previously been used to help vision-impaired and blind people see with their ears. Almost 10 years ago, a senior scientist at Philips Research Laboratories in the Netherlands developed a “seeing” system called The vOICe.

The vision technology offered totally blind users a sonic representation of visual sensations by way of image-to-sound renderings. The technology is now available as an Android application from the Seeing With Sound website, http://www.seeingwithsound.com/.

I-send White Paper 2010: Access for the Visually Impaired.  If you would like a copy please email promote@i-send.co to request a copy.

Why buy a Smartpone by i-send.co

We have all seen the familiar picture!  Most people actually walking around with their mobile phone in their hands, just waiting for it to ping them with a text, call or twitter!  As a busy person, you know the importance of staying a step ahead of your clients and your family.

Being  tied to your desk or home is not an option anymore, getting that important email or phone call and to maintain convenient access to essential data—proposals, schedules, contact information, business news or the stock market.

However, thousands have newfound freedom using PDA-style smartphones designed for business (and fun). Today’s smartphone traces its roots back to the personal digital assistant or PDA. (I actually found my old one the other day) Originally used as businessperson’s right hand to track important client information, project statuses, and task lists, smartphones have evolved into an everyman’s (and woman’s) tool.

Smartphones are much more than just cell phones; they provide instant access to the web. Whether you’re researching news to predict the stock market or looking for the perfect golf course on the weekend, you’ll find it on the net.

Many smartphones allow you to sync with your desktop computer by USB or bluetooth! This means you can store,  view, and work on  documents directly on your handheld. You can also receive and respond to emails as they arrive in your inbox on your home computer with real-time push email.

Smartphones can also serve as multimedia devices, so your entertainment goes with you. They can store and display pictures and videos of friends and family and even entire feature-length movies. Most smartphones take pictures and capture video, but the most common multimedia function is the ability to play MP3s—sit back, relax, and enjoy your favorite tunes while traveling or during breaks.

Another perk of using a smartphone is the fairly recent development of third-party applications (or apps). These apps range from those geared toward hardworking business tasks to entertaining games and everything in between. With thousands of apps available to download in a range of prices, there’s sure to be something that will appeal.

Check out Top Ten Smartphone

What to Look for in a Smartphone for Business

In the past, business people were easily identifiable—they carried large briefcases, binder planners and perhaps a brick cell phone. The scene has changed and so has the way we conduct life and business. A smartphone stores important data and documents, offers a calendar planner, provides instant access to the internet and email and keeps you in touch with clients, coworkers, friends and family – anytime and anywhere.

You can even use your smartphone as an effective broadcasting and marketing tool by sending different types of media via bluetooth to other devices.

Top Things to look for in a new smartphone

Design
Size and weight, along with screen size and resolution, make a difference in the display and handling of a smartphone.

Multimedia
The best business cell phones have at least a 2 megapixel camera with zoom features and the ability to play and record audio and video. Smartphones act as life management devices and include organizational features like calendars and task lists. Most sync with home computers allowing for document viewing and editing.

Call Features/Quality
The foundation of business is communication, and a smartphone’s first function is as a cellular phone. Smartphones for business should include all typical cell phone features including speakerphone, three-way calling, voice dialing, call waiting, etc.

Memory/Storage
The most practical smartphones are compact, include good input and display options, and enough battery life to last through a full day’s work and beyond.

Additional Features
Many smartphones include practical tools like calculators, map applications and GPS. Some have the ability to support third-party or browser-based programs that can perform a variety of specific functions. Third-party apps are becoming a key component of a smartphone, allowing the user to customize their phones to support their lifestyles.  Bluetooth enabled is also a standard feature of the smartphone.

If you want to find out more about Bluetooth proximity Broadcasting, then visit http://www.i-send.co

Shops track customers via mobile phone

Signals given off by phones allow shopping centres to monitor how long people stay and which stores they visit

Customers in shopping centres are having their every move tracked by a new type of surveillance that listens in on the whisperings of their mobile phones.

The technology can tell when people enter a shopping centre, what stores they visit, how long they remain there, and what route they take as they walked around.

The device cannot access personal details about a person’s identity or contacts, but privacy campaigners expressed concern about potential intrusion should the data fall into the wrong hands.

The surveillance mechanism works by monitoring the signals produced by mobile handsets and then locating the phone by triangulation – measuring the phone’s distance from three receivers.

smarter way to connectIt has already been installed in two shopping centres, including Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth, and three more centres will begin using it next month, i-send co has learnt.

The company that makes the dishes, which measure 30cm (12 inches) square and are placed on walls around the centre, said that they were useful to centres that wanted to learn more about the way their customers used the store.

A shopping mall could, for example, find out that 10,000 people were still in the store at 6pm, helping to make a case for longer opening hours, or that a majority of customers who visited Gap also went to Next, which could useful for marketing purposes.

In the case of Gunwharf Quays, managers were surprised to discover that an unusually high percentage of visitors were German – the receivers can tell in which country each phone is registered – which led to the management translating the instructions in the car park.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) expressed cautious approval of the technology, which does not identify the owner of the phone but rather the handset’s IMEI code – a unique number given to every device so that the network can recognise it.

But an ICO spokesman said, “we would be very worried if this technology was used in connection with other systems that contain personal information, if the intention was to provide more detailed profiles about identifiable individuals and their shopping habits.”

Only the phone network can match a handset’s IMEI number to the personal details of a customer.

Liberty, the campaign group, said that although the data do not meet the legal definition of ‘personal information’, it “had the potential” to identify particular individuals’ shopping habits by referencing information held by the phone networks.

Owners of large buildings currently have to rely on manual surveys to find out how customers use the space, which can be relevant to questions of design such as where the toilets should be located or which stores should be placed next to one another.

Other types of wireless technology, such as wi-fi and Bluetooth, can be used to locate devices, but the regular phone network signal is preferable because it is much more powerful and fewer receivers are needed to monitor a given area.

Phone networks have long been capable of gauging the rough location of a handset using three phone masts, but the margin error can be as great as 2km. The process is also less efficient when the phone is indoors.

“You’re basically going to know that that person has been in Starbucks,” Toby Oliver, the company’s chief technology officer, said.

Even when the owner is not using it, a mobile phone makes contact with the network every couple of minutes, which is enough for the receivers to get a reading on its position.

Source: http://technology.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/tech_and_web/article3945496.ece

Town Centres explore Bluetooth Marketing to help Retailers

www.i-send.co

Retail Theraphy Bluetooth Style

i-send is helping retailers around the UK explore the option of adding Bluetooth Broadcasting servers to help bring together Retailers and Consumers with the view to enhancing their shopping experience.

Bluetooth® Proximity Marketing provides exciting opportunities allowing retailers to broadcast rich content such as images, audio, video and applications to nearby mobile devices.

This powerful marketing technology is particularly effective for targeting  retail outlets, exhibitions and attendees at live events.

The result is increased footfall to retail stores, more visitors to your Town Centre, higher awareness of your brand and participation in other mobile services.

smarter way to connectWith over 60 million Smartphone’s sold in the second quarter of 2010, and over 60% of them activating Bluetooth, helping  retailers to connect directly with resident or visiting consumers will benefit Town centre fiscally over the next five years.

Bluetooth can deliver a cost effective, environmentally friendly, green campaign to a wide cross section of your Town

i-send Consultancy Services
Our highly experienced media and  technology specialists can provide you with the knowledge and tools to ensure your mobile project is successful and delivers maximum return on your investment.  We have in-depth industry knowledge, hands-on experience and understand business processes, which means we can advise on, and realise your organisation’s mobile aspirations.

With our extensive network of contacts within the mobile space we can put you in touch with the right people where necessary.  Open communication is core to our ethos and your long-term success with mobile is the ultimate goal.

We can provide consultancy services from a half-day discussion about your ideas, through to managing full life-cycle projects.  Such activities can include:

  • Project management
  • Feasibility and idea reality-checks
  • Vendor/partner evaluation and selection
  • Technical due-diligence for investment opportunities
  • Technical and architectural design and implementation
  • Systems integration
  • Matchmaking with potential partners

Contact us if you would like to arrange an appointment.  Please download our Retailers Bluetooth Discussion Document for more information.

AT&T, Verizon to Target Visa, MasterCard With Smartphones

I-send has discovered an announcement and article written by Peter Eichenbaum and Margaret Collins – Aug 2, 2010 9:56 PM GMT
Visa Inc.'s new contactless payment application

Visa Inc.’s new contactless payment application, “Visa payWave.” Source: Visa Inc. via Bloomberg

Aug. 2 (Bloomberg) — Bloomberg’s Peter Eichenbaum talks with Julie Hyman about AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless’s plan to displace credit and debit cards with smartphones, posing a new threat to Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc. The trial would be the carriers’ biggest effort to spur mobile payments in the U.S. and supplant more than 1 billion plastic cards in American wallets. The system would allow consumers to pay at stores with a contactless wave of a smartphone. (Source: Bloomberg)

July 29 (Bloomberg) — Jason Kupferberg, an analyst at UBS AG, talks with Bloomberg’s Susan Li about Visa Inc.’s financial results and outlook. Visa, the world’s biggest payments network, posted a fiscal third-quarter profit that exceeded most Wall Street estimates for a 10th straight quarter as more consumers paid with plastic. Kupferberg, speaking from New York, also discusses the Federal Reserve’s new debit-card regulations aimed at Visa and No. 2 network MasterCard Inc. (Source: Bloomberg)

AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless, the biggest U.S. mobile carriers, are planning a venture to displace credit and debit cards with smartphones, posing a new threat to Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc., three people with direct knowledge of the plan said.

The partnership, which also includes Deutsche Telekom AG unit T-Mobile USA, may work with Discover Financial Services and Barclays Plc to test a system at stores in Atlanta and three other U.S. cities that would let a consumer pay with the contactless wave of a smartphone, the people said. The carriers have been searching for a chief executive officer.

The trial would be the carriers’ biggest effort to spur mobile payments in the U.S. and supplant more than 1 billion plastic cards in American wallets. Smartphones have encroached on tasks ranging from Web browsing to street navigation and now may help the phone companies compete with San Francisco-based Visa and MasterCard, the world’s biggest payments networks.

“This is definitely a game-changer,” said industry consultant Richard Crone of San Carlos, California-based Crone Consulting LLC. The firm advises card networks, issuers and phone companies. The mobile carriers “are the biggest recurring billers in every market. They are experts at processing payments,” Crone said.

Market Dominance

Visa and Purchase, New York-based MasterCard handled $2.45 trillion, or 82 percent, of U.S. consumer spending on general- purpose cards last year, according to the Nilson Report, an industry newsletter. That dominance has helped fuel profit growth for both companies. Visa’s annual operating income has grown sixfold since fiscal 2005 to $3.54 billion last year. MasterCard’s has surged more than fivefold to $2.27 billion.

Visa fell 1.5 percent to $72.23 at 4:15 p.m. in New York Stock Exchange composite trading and MasterCard declined 3.6 percent to $202.52, the worst performance in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

The service, similar to those already available in Japan, Turkey and the U.K., would use contactless technology to complete purchases in stores. They’d be processed through Discover’s payments network, currently the fourth-biggest behind Visa, MasterCard and American Express Co. Barclays would be the bank helping to manage the accounts, said the people, who requested anonymity because of confidentiality agreements.

‘Logical Next Step’

AT&T and Verizon Wireless are equal partners in the venture and T-Mobile has a smaller stake, one person said.  Representatives for the carriers, London-based Barclays and Riverwoods, Illinois-based Discover declined to comment on the venture.

“Mobile payments are the logical next step for consumers,” said Mark Siegel, a spokesman for Dallas-based AT&T. Siegel, Marquett Smith of Basking Ridge, New Jersey-based Verizon Wireless, and Peter Dobrow of the Bellevue, Washington- based T-Mobile unit, all said their companies “have nothing to announce.”

At Discover, spokeswoman Leslie Sutton said the company “is always evaluating technology solutions that make things faster, safer and more convenient.” Barclays spokesman Kevin Sullivan said, “facilitating mobile payments is a big part of Barclaycard’s strategy globally.”

The phone companies probably wouldn’t replace the biggest U.S. credit- and debit-card issuers, including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Co., said Gary Townsend, CEO of Hill- Townsend Capital LLC, a Chevy Chase, Maryland-based hedge fund that specializes in financial firms.

Swipe Fees

“What is a cell phone, except a mechanism for consumers to address their lives in whatever way they choose?” Townsend said today in a telephone interview. “There’s certainly no reason if an AT&T account can effectively be carried on a phone that a JPMorgan or a Wells Fargo card can’t be there, too. In fact, the antitrust issues would demand that that be allowed.”

Retailers may be eager to help another network after years of fighting over transaction fees set by Visa and MasterCard. The merchants persuaded Congress last month to approve caps on interchange, or “swipe” fees, for debit transactions and filed a 2005 federal antitrust lawsuit that is still pending. The U.S. Department of Justice is weighing whether to bring a civil lawsuit against Visa for barring merchants from surcharging customers who use credit cards, according to the company.

‘Material, Adverse Effect’

“If we change our rules in these areas, this could cause a material, adverse effect on our business,” Visa said today in a regulatory filing.

Interchange fees on credit and debit cards exceed $40 billion a year and average about 1 percent to 2 percent of every transaction.

The people with knowledge of the carriers’ venture didn’t say how much merchants may be charged per transaction or when the trial will start.

“We have long argued that real competition is missing from today’s payments market,” said Brian Dodge, a spokesman for the Retail Industry Leaders Association, which represents merchants such as Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Home Depot Inc. and Target Corp. “The emergence of a secure and reliable competing network that serves the demand from consumers for mobility payment options and reduces retailers’ costs would be welcomed news.”

‘Tipping Point’

Visa and MasterCard are benefiting as people abandon cash and paper checks for cards and electronic payments, which account for more than half of U.S. consumer purchases, compared with 36 percent in 2003, according to the Nilson Report.

Mobile technology for banking and payments is reaching “a tipping point,” with younger consumers leading the way, Mercatus LLC, a Boston-based consulting firm, said in a June 7 study. More than half of U.S. consumers, and almost 80 percent of those between the ages of 18 and 34, will use mobile financial services within five years, according to Mercatus.

“Rapid and broad-based consumer adoption of mobile financial services is imminent,” as people rely on their phones to manage every aspect of their lives, said Mercatus Managing Partner Bob Hedges, former head of retail banking and payments at Fleet Bank. “Consumers want it to happen.”

MasterCard and Visa have been investing in their own mobile projects. Visa and Richardson, Texas-based DeviceFidelity, have developed technology that can transform phones consumers carry today, including Apple Inc.’s iPhone, into a payment device that can store multiple card accounts, said Bill Gajda, head of mobile for Visa.

Zong, Bling, Boku

“Visa is in discussions with a number of mobile operators around the world,” Gajda said in a July 28 interview. “We continue to believe that the best opportunity to create a secure, scalable, mobile-payment service is by working together, converging mobile and financial networks, and extending the value of electronic payments to the mobile channel.”

In June, New York-based Citigroup Inc. introduced MasterCard PayPass stickers that can be affixed to the back of mobile phones to make contactless payments at about 230,000 U.S. merchants, MasterCard spokeswoman Joanne Trout said in an e- mail.

Startups based near Silicon Valley, California, such as Zong, Bling Nation and Boku Inc., offer alternative payment solutions. Zong users enter their mobile phone numbers to make purchases on the Internet. Bling Nation works with community banks and local businesses, allowing customers to “tap-and- pay” with their devices. Boku lets online gamers buy “digital goods and social experiences,” the company says on its website.

‘Card Is Dumb’

Any new payment system may face barriers that prevent the technology from taking hold in the U.S., the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston said in a May policy paper.

Consumers won’t demand mobile payments “until they know that enough merchants accept them, and merchants will not implement the technology until a critical mass of consumers justifies the cost of doing so,” the report said.

Merchants would have to spend an estimated $200 per reader, and updating mobile phones with embedded microchips would increase manufacturing costs by $10 to $15 per handset, according to the Boston Fed. That may be worthwhile if accepting mobile payments allows retailers to send rewards and information about promotions to their customers’ phones at checkout.

Retail Theraphy Bluetooth Style

“These are important issues if people are to be convinced to rely on this technology as an alternative to carrying a wallet,” the policy paper said.

The wireless carriers have an advantage over Visa and MasterCard in the race to control the U.S. payments market because the phone companies have access to their customers’ mobile numbers and bank account information, said Crone, the industry consultant.

“A mobile device is online, real-time interactivity that changes the customer relationship,” he said. “A card is dumb.”

low energy wiresless communication

i-send consultative services.

Our highly experienced media and  technology specialists can provide you with the knowledge and tools to ensure your mobile project is successful and delivers maximum return on your investment.  We have in-depth industry knowledge, hands-on experience and understand business processes, which means we can advise on, and realise your organisation’s mobile aspirations.

With our extensive network of contacts within the mobile space we can put you in touch with the right people where necessary.  Open communication is core to our ethos and your long-term success with mobile is the ultimate goal.

We can provide consultancy services from a half-day discussion about your ideas, through to managing full life-cycle projects.  Such activities can include:

  • Project management
  • Feasibility and idea reality-checks
  • Vendor/partner evaluation and selection
  • Technical due-diligence for investment opportunities
  • Technical and architectural design and implementation
  • Systems integration
  • Matchmaking with potential partners

Visit our website for free whitepapers.

Opportunity for Mobile Advertising & Coupons

i-send

the smarter way to network

It has been interesting to read a new report from Juniper Research which has found that the mobile marketing and retail sector (comprising mobile advertising, coupons and smart posters) will exceed $8 billion by 2012 globally.

Retail Theraphy Bluetooth Style

The Mobile Marketing and Retail Strategies report found that Retailers were already starting to exploit the mobile channel through advertising campaigns on the handset and by issuing money-off coupons.The market for these two activities alone is forecast to grow by half in the next two years.

According to report co-author Howard Wilcox, there research and interviews showed that location aware technologies will play a key part. Companies like Google and IBM are seeking to exploit the knowledge of where users are located to enable retailers to offer in store shoppers a rich set of capabilities such as personalised special offers. As a result forecasting the mobile coupons market to double to exceed $4 billion in 2012.

Retailers Migrating to Mobile

At a recent mobile industry event, CTIA Wireless 2010, more than 20 percent of the shows attendees were said to come from the retail space, showing that retailers were beginning to latch on to the potential of the mobile channel.

Whilst the mobile advertising and mobile coupons markets will reach similar sizes, Juniper believes that smart posters (which users can tap to obtain product information) will remain a niche sector within the overall market until NFC (Near Field Communications) capable devices are more widely used.

The report also warns however that failure to use targeted, location based advertising, particularly SMS advertising, may cause mobile users to regard such advertising as little better than spam. The report recommends that brands and retailers should consider geotagging their products and locations.

Further findings include:

a) Western Europe forecast to nearly treble in size between 2010 and 2014
b) Brands, retailers and merchants should use clever, engaging apps, which can be far more effective

To download a copy of the white paper click here.