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What P.F. Chang?s could have done to make its mobile ad campaign successful

P.F. Chang?s is currently running a mobile ad campaign within Pandora. Although the company has great intentions with the initiative, it falls short in many ways.

For one, the mobile banner ad leads consumers to a non-optimized page. What is the point of running a mobile ad campaign that is not optimized for handset devices?

?Mobile needs to be a thoughtful process with the end user keeping the small screen in mind,? said Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis, Atlanta.

?When consumers click through an email, SMS text, mobile ad, or QR code they will be going to the mobile Web or straight into the app store,? she said.

?Mobile marketing should be visibly clear on the message as to what you want that consumer to do once they do click through, the process should not be difficult for them to figure out ? that is the number one rule of marketing, clear, simple message straight through to action.?

Ms. Troutman is not affiliated with P.F. Chang?s. She commented based on her expertise on the subject.

P.F. Chang?s did not respond to press inquiries.

If you don?t succeed?
The P.F. Chang?s mobile banner ad reads ?20 Lunch Combos Under $10 Plus Tax. Find a P.F. Chang?s Near You.?

In addition to the mobile ad, the company is also running full page audio ads within Pandora.

Though the ad campaign is enticing ? great meals for low prices ? the execution is not.

The P.F. Chang's landing page

When consumers tap on the mobile ad, they are redirected to the company?s Web site.

Nowadays, users do not want to pinch-and-zoom.

It is hard to read the text on the screen as it is clearly not optimized.

The landing page features videos that promote the company?s products, however, consumers have to pinch-and-zoom to press play.

Having users work to browse content is not ideal.

P.F. Chang?s should have tested the mobile ad to make sure that it was optimized fully.

Additionally, the landing page should have been mobile-optimized and had the experience been more seamless, consumers would be more inclined to interact with the brand.

The mobile ad also entices consumers to find the nearest P.F. Chang?s location, however that option cannot be seen in the non-optimized landing page.

P.F. Chang?s should have created a mobile landing page that used the consumer?s device and its GPS technology to help them find the nearest location.

?try again
P.F. Chang?s is not the only company that has missed the mark with its mobile ad campaign.

In 2010, Chrysler?s mobile banner in the New York Times iPhone app illustrated the importance of having a mobile-optimized landing page. Chrysler?s landing page was not mobile-optimized.

The banner took a user to the company?s Web site, which was not optimized for a handset, thus completely ruining the user experience and making the ad useless (see story).

Last year, Unilever?s I Can?t Believe It?s Not Butter mobile banner ad, which ran in iPhone application, promoted the company?s butter products.

Instead of taking consumers to a mobile-optimized site, the banner ad took them to the company?s Web site, which changes the overall purpose of the ad (see story).

Most recently, Boar?s Head ran a mobile ad campaign that was aimed to engage new and existing consumers with its products. However, the landing page was not mobile-optimized (see story).

?Another item to remember is that your mobile ads when running on Pandora could be on an iPhone, Android or the mobile Web, and the ads running could be on a multiple of phones, retailers shouldn?t automatically assume that consumers are willing to go through the hassle of the pinch and zoom to find a location,? Ms. Troutman said.

?Simple fix, P.F. Chang?s could build a landing page with a location based search to allow ease of use, and drive more action on the mobile,? she said.

Final Take
Rimma Kats is associate editor on Mobile Marketer, New York