SoLoMo…Still Sexy?

solomoSocial, Local, Mobile…SoLoMo, a social media trend that seemed to be popping up all over the place in 2013, but is it still going strong? The answer appears to be, yes. Some social media trends come and go, but SoLoMo, at least for now, is here to stay, and is only getting sexier for marketers. From small to big business, everyone has been jumping on the mobile marketing bandwagon, and those who have failed to make the leap are missing out. Mobile is not only predicted to overtake desktop Internet usage this year, but 4 out of 5 consumers use their smartphones to shop as well! That’s a huge market to be missing out on if you’re not on board. Now most marketers are rolling their eyes, as this is probably information you already know give or take a specific statistic. So the question is, how can SoLoMo specifically take your mobile marketing to the next level?

What makes the concept of SoLoMo so sexy to marketers is the fact that you can grab people basically through every means of marketing. You have them wherever they are, but also near where YOU are. You can grab their attention through their everyday lives both on their device and in their actual path of migration through promotions that bring them to you physically, albeit initially capturing their attention digitally. pullingstringsThey want to be able to have you at the touch of their fingertips, and in doing so you can then pull their strings from the tips of yours through SoLoMo. Add in the “So” element of social media, and you’re golden. You’ve captured them through their means of entertainment, communication, daily routine, and social life. You’ve permeated pretty much every aspect of their world. Well done you saucy marketer you.

Now of course that is just the most basic level of it. To actually make this work you must integrate seamlessly between these different channels. Do you first catch their eye with a native mobile ad? Or do you start with a social media promotion that leads them to a mobile optimized page? Where does the local part fit in? Do you have a QR code on the mobile page that users can then go scan at X location for a discount or exclusive offer? The strategy behind SoLoMo is where the challenge lies. Assume your consumers are lazy – how can you get that last person to move from their phone and into your shop? Or to pick your brand out from the masses? How do you make your SoLoMo marketing actually appeal to the consumer?

Here are a couple case studies showing how both SMBs and more recognizable brands can capitalize on this marketing tactic:

  • Coffee Klatch, a small local coffee shop in
    Southern California with four locations, ran a FourSquare (the platform king of location-based marketing) promotion, where consumers checked-in to receive special offers, supported by in-shop screens highlighting the offer. The promotion drove friendly competition, an in increase word-of-mouth (which as we know in social is a top referrer), and visible online recommendations.
  • Pose, a fashion app that has exploded over the last couple of years, uses SoLoMo to both promote other brands and the app itself. Pose encourages users to upload and share their fashion pics (social/mobile), Instagram style, but then seamlessly weaves in promoted posts in-stream as well, as in the case with its July 2013 ad campaign with Juicy Couture Fragrances. While still missing the local part, Mashable points out that “geolocation presents another option for companies that want to target consumers that live in certain urban markets or near its stores.” And therein lies the “Lo” and the potential to do big things with a local touch.

Brands are more and more frequently hopping on the SoLoMo idea with geo-locational promotions that you can download through apps such as Scoutmob, Groupon Now, and more, of course often with the social element attached. Facebook ConnectWith the popularity of SoLoMo only continuing on the rise as our world continues to digitalize and mobilize, we can expect to see brands continuing to shift towards this mode of marketing, while more and more platforms and apps compete to be the resource used for these campaigns. The opportunities are endless for reaching consumers when you have both the mobile and physical (brick-and-mortar) realms to work with. So the real question is, what trend will come along to trump SoLoMo?