Marketing aims at creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that (hopefully) have value for customers, clients, partners, or other relationships. Much of its success depends on reaching the right people with the right message in the right situation. Whatever can be of help in this endeavour is to be used or at least tried out. Trying different media is part of these experiments and has lead to many experiences - more or less successful ones among them.
In today’s media-rich society with many messages (more or less desperately) searching for receivers successful marketing means especially to reach people when they are open to receive a marketing message. This may be one reason, why mobile marketing – or more precisely – marketing making use of mobile communication is considered as such a promising field. The vast coverage that mobile communication networks (e.g., GSM) offer allows to reach more and more people at almost every location and consequently at almost every time. In addition mobile communication subscribers are often identified to at least some degree via their mobile phone number. And last but not least the infrastructure of cell-based networks together with ever-improving navigation based on satellites can tell quite a bit about customers and their situation. Thus, marketers can come closer to consumers than ever before.
Coming close and not being annoying requires special skills. While not all of them can be acquired by research, this situation clearly asks for a Handbook of Research on Mobile Marketing Management. Key Pousttchi and Dietmar G. Wiedemann can therefore be applauded for having chosen the right topic at the right time demonstrating good marketing skills. Will a handbook be the right medium in an age of content overflow? It can be, if it is structured well, and the structure of this book does make sense: Starting with an “Introduction to Mobile Marketing” and then following up with “Technology Issues in Mobile Marketing” avoids the mistake to believe that technology would solve every problem, even if it is not even explained, while demonstrating at the same time that mobile marketing cannot be successful without understanding the technology basics. Both sections give a good basis for describing “Research Issues in Mobile Marketing”, as done in Section 3, before then “Managerial Issues in Mobile Marketing” can be discussed in Section 4.
This handbook, collected by editors, who for a long time have fostered the communication and exchange between researchers and practitioners, should help both to understand current issues as well as open questions and last not least each other.
May it receive the success it deserves.
Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany