MMS or Multimedia Messaging Services are commonly known as picture messages but can have a variety of content in them from videos, text pages, QR codes and ringtones.
MMS was seen as the best way to offer a great user experience prior to 2008, when first the mobile web, WAP push and then mobile applications offered a much better way of engaging with consumers, whilst having much more functionality and many more options for marketers to achieve better results from much more varied call to actions in there campaigns.
Where MMS campaigns were used over traditional SMS messaging, there was a much greater response rate on the campaigns as consumers were drawn to the imagery in the MMS as opposed to the blandness of a traditional message.
However, there are many challenges to using MMS as a regular part of your mobile strategy, the first of which is cost versus gain ratio. The cost of MMS is prohibitive to using it for all your database of consumers, with traditional MMS messages costing between 8p and 35p depending on volume and length of message.
A traditional MMS message is 300k in size, this is a standard size to ensure compatibility with most mobile devices.
Other challenges you will face when it comes to adding MMS as part of your mobile channel strategy are;
Content Adaption and Handset configuration both these challenges relate purely to the types of devices out there and the fact that not every device will be catered for when you create your content or configure your phone settings.
Travel Agents in particular have used MMS messaging to great advantage in the past, with some holiday packages to more expensive destinations coming with an MMS message to your phone on booking the holiday showing your room, the hotel you would be staying in and nearby landmarks like the beach for instance. The message took on the effect of a simple slideshow of MMS messages and you can imagine how good this would be from a customer perspective, to be able to recieve an MMS showing you what your room will look like etc…
Due in part to the challenges associated with it and in part to cost of build and deployment, most companies no longer favour MMS as a bulk or mass market communication method, rather it has become a rare and exclusive medium with the vast majority of customers prefering WAP push or Mobile Applications as the cheaper alternative and the way forward.
If you find that the challenges associated with MMS marketing are prohibitive to your strategy, then dont worry, use a mobile landing page to interact with your consumers instead, make the SMS message content relevant and interesting and add the url in for your page and encourage consumers to click on the link, then you can ask them to perform the call to action you want them to do on your landing page.
In the example below, you can see how a simple text message (1) containing a link to a mobile site or landing page (2) can be ultra effective at giving a positive visual and user friendly experience to the recipient.
The message flow is fully trackeable and you can provide full user statistics on call to action / response rates, sign up rates, click through from the intial message rates and added to the delivery reports for the first message you will be able to show how succesfully the campaign has been almost in realtime.