Friday, December 28, 2007

Marketnews - Gadget Talk: Text in the New Year

Marketnews - Gadget Talk: Text in the New Year

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Text Messaging: Where The Volume And The Dollars Are Today

Text Messaging: Where The Volume And The Dollars Are Today

Small Businesses Marketing with Text Messaging - Yahoo! Small Business

Small Businesses Marketing with Text Messaging - Yahoo! Small Business

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

SMS is 15 Years Old

December 4th marked the 15th anniversary of the first text message ever sent commercially. AirWide Solutions, the originator of texting, threw a bash in London to celebrate the event and to honor Neil Papworth, the Alexander Graham Bell of SMS.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

ChristianMobile Launch Christian Mobile Service to Mobile Phone Subscribers Across All Mobile Networks in the United … | Online Branding, Internet Branding, Marketing – Brand New Buzz

ChristianMobile Launch Christian Mobile Service to Mobile Phone Subscribers Across All Mobile Networks in the United … Online Branding, Internet Branding, Marketing – Brand New Buzz

Museum 2.0: Cross-Platform Experiences: Searching for Symbiosis

Museum 2.0: Cross-Platform Experiences: Searching for Symbiosis

Situational Marketing: Mobile Marketing For Grocery Product Launches

Situational Marketing: Mobile Marketing For Grocery Product Launches

TXT NOW Text/SMS Message Marketing » Putting Mobile Txt Messaging into Perspective

TXT NOW Text/SMS Message Marketing » Putting Mobile Txt Messaging into Perspective

Weight Loss & Fitness Blog » Blog Archive » Medical University of South Carolina Announces “Cell-U-Lite” Text Messaging Service, Providing Daily Weight Loss Reminders and Tips

Weight Loss & Fitness Blog » Blog Archive » Medical University of South Carolina Announces “Cell-U-Lite” Text Messaging Service, Providing Daily Weight Loss Reminders and Tips

» Firing Employee for “Calling in Sick” Via Text Message Deemed Unfair » Blog Archive   Alice Hill’s Real Tech News - Independent Tech

» Firing Employee for “Calling in Sick” Via Text Message Deemed Unfair » Blog Archive Alice Hill’s Real Tech News - Independent Tech

Friday, October 26, 2007

Bill to Hillary: Happy Birthday

Rumor has it that President Clinton just sent his first text message. It was a happy birthday gretting to wife Hillary on the occasion of her 60th birthday. That just proves once again that you can teach old dogs new tricks.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Buy Car Insurance by the Day via SMS

As I sit in San Diego poised to cross the border into Mexico, I am in the market for some Mexican auto insurance. Too bad I can't just send a text message to my insurance agent to sign me up. While that's not possible with my current company, I ran across a forward thinking company that is ahead of the pack. Check it out at
Que le vaya bien!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Texting is for more than gossip, flirting, and chat

The multi-functionality of a Windows Mobile Professional device amazes me, and I appreciate each and every ability. There is no other device on the market that comes even close. I suppose a few years ago, I would have said the camera would have been the most amazing thing. Of course now I just it for granted along with PIM functions. Maybe more recently I would have said the most amazing thing was to write an entire book on a PPC using an iGo Stowaway Bluetooth keyboard. Or I might have gushed over the ability to watch and control my home TV from anywhere in the world with SlingPlayer on my pocket pal.

After careful consideration, I submit that the most amazing thing I have done to date is the use of text messaging or SMS for mobile marketing. Texting is the future of advertising, which can be used for disseminating information instantly to mobile phones. No other form of advertising comes even close because of its immediacy and ability to reach a customer wherever they happen to be at the moment.

What I particularly appreciate about SMS marketing is that it is SPAM free. Customers must want and ask for the information you send them and can opt out at any time by merely texting the word STOP.

With the proper interface, I can construct a mini-Website that is optimized for viewing on a small handheld screen and send it to a customer. A mini-site can have graphics and function for florists to show flower arrangements, for realtors to show the interior of houses, and for restaurant owners to show a tasty meal. The applications are only limited by your imagination.

I can broadcast a text message to my entire file of opt-in customers, or I can segment it in any way I wish. If I owned a pizza parlor, I wouldn’t want to send a pepperoni pizza special to my vegetarian customers, for instance. Or if I were a realtor, I wouldn’t want to send a listing of a million dollar home to a customer looking for a $200,000 home.

If my business depends on appointments, I can send out reminders. Think of how popular I would be as a florist if I reminded some guy of his anniversary and saved his bacon. Doctors and dentists can remind patients (I always thought that was a strange term, as if their clients must have patience. But maybe it’s not so strange after all.) of their pending appointments of that it is time for a six-month check up.

Auto repair shops and car dealers should all be using this marvelous invention as should beauty parlor operators along with any number of other businesses that depend on appointments.

The application of mass SMS is not limited to the business sector. SMS can be used as the most effective crisis alert system ever conceived. We know from the Virginia Tech tragedy that email just doesn’t cut it. I wonder what the outcome would have been had VT been able to text out a warning.

Non-profit organizations can use text messaging as an effective means of fund raising. People can even make contributions with their mobile phones. The other day I was listening to what seems to me to be an almost constant fund drive from PBS radio. I would have gladly contributed, but it was too much trouble to do all they asked at the moment. However, had I been able to zap them a contribution instantly with a text message, I would have done it.

Another great use of texting would be for athletic organizations to boost enthusiasm and attendance with contests, votes, reminders, and incentives for ticket sales.

There is even a spiritual side to texting. Churches could start a text message program called “Cell Your Soul to Jesus.” This might be a whole lot more fun and better supported than passing the plate every Sunday or a great supplement. Ministers could offer inspirational text messages and charge a tax deductible subscription fee. You could even do Bible study programs with SMS and a mini-Website.

Yes, the applications of SMS are manifold and infinite. With a little imagination, SMS can be used to promote almost any business, cause, or passion. I wonder what applications readers might conjure up and hope they will share with comments.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Mobile marketing at music festivals

By Springwise
A text message informed patrons when their clothes were ready for to be picked up. Lots more possibilities exist. Merged with GPS, mobile devices could help event-goers find one another. Web cams could show where lines were shortest at ...
Mobile marketing at music festivals
Seeds of Growth - ideas to help... -

Monday, July 23, 2007

Should Mobile Marketing Cost End-Users?

One of the big differences between email and SMS messages is that email is free, but text messages cost the end user to send and to receive. However, because of the cost factor, the end-user is also in control. He must ask for the information, and he can opt-out at anytime. Accordingly, SMS is supposedly SPAM-free. However, I must admit that I have now received several spam SMS messages from what appears to be a software pirating company based in Chile.

Mobile marketers have been discussing the idea of FTEU (free to end users) for a while now. So far, only AT&T and Verizon are amenable to the concept. Other carriers seem reticent to follow suit.

What do you think the policy should be from the consumers' point of view and from the marketers' point of view?

For an expanded view of the subject, visit Steve Chipman's
Digital Marketing Blog.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

4INFO Offers Instant Info with Texting/SMS

If you need instant information on the go, use the power of your mobile phone and text messaging. While Google may be the best known source available for texting information queries, another good one with many of the same features but with different ones too is 4INFO.

To review text messaging for information retrieval, there are two elements. First you must send the message to a short code, which usually consists of five digits so that you don’t have to key in or remember a whole long phone number. Next, you must enter a keyword so that the service knows how to respond appropriately. For instance, if you are interested in a stock quotation, just key in the ticker symbol such as IBM and text it to 44636 (4INFO).

With 4INFO, you can find information on sports scores, stocks, Wi-Fi hotspots, package tracking, weather, yellow pages, news, flight status, hotel reservations, city search, TV Guide, movie show times, drink recipes, price lookups, jokes, celebrity gossip, and music charts.

Google may be a little stronger for travel abroad for checking airport information, monetary exchange, conversions, questions/answers, and language translations, but 4INFO has some other valuable tools such as package tracking for UPS and FedEx.

4INFO also has some fun stuff such as jokes, horoscopes, drink recipes, and pickup lines. Here’s a corny pickup line for you: Would you like gin and platonic, or do you prefer scotch and sofa? To get an impromptu pickup line just text PU to 44636 and see what you get.

You can also request from and to turn by turn travel directs and a map from Mapquest. If you wish, you can email the directions. If you need help, just text HELP to 4INFO.


Another service 4INFO offers not available from Google is that it will send you alert messages on a wide variety of topics. Real-time alerts include sports scores, player stats, weather, stock quotations, RSS news feeds, package tracking, Craigslist, and even personal reminders. Under the Life & Culture category, you can receive alerts on horoscopes, word of the day, Bible quotations, On This Day, Daily Quote [sic], Love Tips, and Diet Tips. In the Fun Stuff category, you can receive Movie Trivia, Celeb News, Daily Insult, Daily Myth, Fortune Cookie, and Wacky Holidays. You can usually specify when you want to receive the alert and how many.


One of the huge differences between Google and 4INFO is that you must be prepared to receive commercial messages along with your information. It’s sort of like getting Google Ads in 4INFO message. It’s strange that Google doesn’t put ads in their information message yet, but I suppose it will come as certain as bees buzz.

WAP too

If your phone is Web browser enabled, you can go to to retrieve information or to set up alerts.


SMS and 4INFO enables you to acquire instant information on a wide variety of subjects. Google’s SMS offers more services for the traveler, but there is much overlap with 4INFO. 4INFO wins in the fun stuff department, however. Google is ad free while 4INFO is not. Both services are free but you may have to pay per message charges to your service provider. Texting can be addictive and it’s a good idea to get an unlimited usage account.

Google Delivers Instant Information via Text Messaging/SMS

There are several ways you can acquire useful information using SMS. The method we’ll discuss in this article involves sending a text message to Google and receiving information back also instantaneously. All you have to do is send the appropriate keyword to 46645 (GOOGL) or to 466453 (GOOGLE). For example, if you want to know the weather in Chicago, just text “W Chicago” to 46645. Accordingly, you can also find a hotel, pizza joint, restaurant, gas station, or hotspot in any area by just specifying the type of service and geographic location.

Ideal for Travel

When you are travelling and need instant information, Google is an excellent source using your mobile phone and text messaging.

Maybe you want to see a movie. Just text the title and your current Zip Code. Google will respond with information about the movie. You can even get directions on how to get there, which turns your phone into a navigation system without satellite connections.

Suppose you just want to know what movies choices are available. To get a list, just send keywords movies and Zip to Google. When the reply comes, you can call the theater by tapping on the phone number.

If you ever need to know the status of your flight, just text keyword Flight and flight number to Google like this: Flight AS 2110. To get airport information, key in airport name and city. Google will send you the weather and tell you if there are any flight delays.

Sending the airline name will yield you the airline’s toll free number for information and reservations.

What if you need to convert currency? Just text the kind of currency, the amount, and the currency you want to convert to like this: 8 USD to YEN.

If you are having communication problems and need to translate something, Google can come to the rescue. Text the word or phrase you want to translate and indicate to which language, and it will assume you want to translate from English. If other languages are involved, you must specify which the from and to idioms.

Of course, you can also convert and calculate. For example, text 1 US pint in liters, and Google will respond with the answer.

Other Examples

Google works well for finding just about anything you may need. You can send a query for such items as restaurants and even specify the cuisine. It will find hotspots, libraries, hospitals, hardware stores, gas stations, hotels, and more.

It can also define words, report sports scores, and track your favorite stocks. If you ever need help at any point, just text help to GOOGLE.

Let Google turn your mobile communicator into a virtual concierge. Stay tuned for more ways to use the power of texting.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Do You SMS?

SMS (short message service) or text messaging has become well-entrenched in Europe and Asia. It has been slow to take off in the United States because of our competing telcos with differing technologies. Teens and the younger generation have been quick to adapt texting as their preferred mode of communication in the U.S. With more and more TV shows using SMS for voting (American Idol and Donald Trump), polling, and for joining fan clubs, its use is becoming more widespread. However, few people use SMS to the fullest advantage. You can use SMS to get instant information, send money, make money, and to save money. It is actually the most powerful marketing tool ever conceived.

Sending a text message consists of two elements. First, you have to send it to either a mobile phone number, email address, or a short code. A short code is usually five or six numbers used for non-personal or commercial messages for convenience so that you don’t have to remember or key in a long phone number.

Personal SMS

No wonder the younger generation has enthusiastically embraced texting as the preferred means of communication over phone calls and email; SMS is faster and more efficient. Of course, there’s the down side too, and SMS has been used for cheating on tests so that some schools frown on their use. I suppose another downside would be parents' complaints about excessive per message charges. A word to the wise: If you plan on SMSing, get the unlimited service plan.

To text someone, go to the messaging area of your phone’s functions and select SMS or Text Message. Enter the recipient’s phone number in the To: field and then type your message in the message field. Select Send, and off it goes.

Text messages are limited to 160 characters maximum. Some phones display character counts. If you go over 160 characters, some phone will split the messages and automatically create sequential messages. Some phones have canned text with phrases you can select such as “email me,” “wanna do lunch,” “on phone.” You can edit the list to create your own phrases. Some phones have a table of emoticons or smiley faces you can select.

The 160 character limitation and the laborious task of entering text using a phone keypad have combined to produce an evolving character-efficient text talk with new words and abbreviations. For example, 2GTBT=too good to be true; 143=I love you; 404=I don’t know. For a comprehensive list, go to Check out the emoticon chart too.

Texting has many advantages over email and phone calls. Brief text messages can be assimilated quickly by the human mind compared to processing phone conversations with all the extras and social amenities. Text messages can be archived and automatically linked for easy review on more sophisticated phones. Text messages are never dropped or cut off because of bad reception. Messages are transmitted instantly and can be used in situations where talking on the phone would be awkward, such as in meetings or in public places. You can send links or URLs to Web enabled phones. Texting if fun for casual flirting and for building good karma with thoughtful messages and reminders. Busy people can become even more effective using SMS.

Commercial SMS

Texting in the United States for commercial purposes has just begun to emerge. Perhaps you have noticed texting first on TV shows such as American Idol. You can text your vote using your cell phone—if you are an AT&T customer. Even though limited to a single carrier, the show receives millions and millions of votes showing that it is a well-received and popular activity. The problem of competing technologies of all the different characters has been overcome and the gap bridged by companies such as Synergetics International SMS ( so that it is now possible for businesses large and small to take advantage of this technology for marketing purposes.

Think of the power of SMS with respect to marketing. There has never before been such a powerful means of marketing. Almost everyone carries a mobile phone these days. People don’t leave home without them, and they are your constant companion. Accordingly, a marketer has the opportunity to reach customers at anytime any place.

It is important, however, that unlike email there is no SPAM involved. The customer must initiate and invite the contact and can opt out at any time.

I will discuss the applications of commercial SMS more fully in a future article.


SMS is an amazing technology that goes far beyond personal communications with its commercial marketing possibilities and as a platform for information retrieval. You can use SMS for making money, sending money, and saving money. I will explore all of these possibilities in more detail in future articles, so stay tuned. Texting is the future of personal marketing. The future is in mobile technology. Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft, has predicted that mobile phones will shape the future, not laptops, not PDAs. It seems that Apple believes this too with the release of its new iPhone.