WARNING! THE FOLLOWING JOKE MAY SHOCK YOU

Mr. Online and Mr. Offline are sitting in a bar discussing their various marketing tactics when in walks the young, voluptuous Miss Mobile; after a few drinks they strike up a conversation.

"Hey, why not come over to MySpace and we can Google together," says Mr. Online. Immediately Mr. Offline pipes in, "Hey, forget that, I can get you on billboards or perhaps a magazine spread."

Totally unimpressed, Miss Mobile strolls to the door, turning to say, "Sorry guys, it sounds like neither of you are in to
text."

When it comes to your business, when was the last time you used SMS text? Yet, can you think of anything that is more pervasive and more intimate with the majority of your potential clients and customers than the communication medium of mobile phones?

Here are the facts: 94% of SMS text messages are viewed, 62% are remembered and 22% of value-add messages are forwarded to friends. Roughly half of mobile subscribers use SMS in the U.S. today.

If those facts are not mind-blowing enough to pique your marketing interest, did you know that there are more mobile phones on this planet than automobiles, landline phones, credit cards, TV sets, or personal computers? Yes... 2.7 billion mobile devices are conveniently nestled in the pockets of the very people you'd like to reach and it's rare that anyone turns their mobile device off.

So here's my question: Are you using SMS text to connect prospects to your business? Do you have a mobile web site?

The challenge underlying my joke is not that one marketing medium is better than another, rather it is that the different ways of marketing are not connecting. There's a GAP between them that, if bridged, would optimize how they flow and work together. It's an inconvenient truth that marketing via multiple media is a far better strategy for any business than relying too heavily on just one. Unfortunately, so many businesses are either online or offline and they rarely venture across the GAP in any intelligent way. The big question is: "How do I connect them?"

ARE YOUR PROSPECTS OLYMPIC POLE VAULTERS?

Today your prospect or customer often is required to travel across many marketing GAPs, say from a yard sign or newspaper ad, to an SMS text message, to a mobile web site, to a recorded phone message back to your internet site and ultimately compelled to join your email newsletter subscription list and receive a product sample in the mail.

Or, perhaps a prospect hears by word-of-mouth about your product, then they search for more info on Google or Yahoo, they read a review or discover a YouTube video that connects them to a web site where they locate a phone number and call to get directions to meet in person or attend an event. These are just two common examples where your prospect was required to jump four or five GAPs each time.

This multi-media GAP jumping is forcing prospects to become Olympic pole vaulters as they try to follow your GAP-ridden sales path toward the goal you have in mind and the outcome they seek. The bad news is most business owners and marketers are not making this any easier for the prospect. In fact, your BRIDGES are often so rickety, cumbersome, or non-existent your prospects get lost in the GAP.

SO WHAT DOES ALL THIS MEAN?

Regardless of what business you thought you were in, you have suddenly found yourself in the BRIDGE-building business. You have (or should have) marketing campaigns online, offline and in the mobile world, all working in synch to cast your marketing message out and reel your prospect in. Your best prospects desire a yellow brick road, yet time and again you're giving them chutes and ladders -- if that.

There's actually very little that's new here, we are just looking at your marketing a bit closer with the objective to better connect things. However, the solution you need requires a new mindset, a new set of tools and a whole new genre of marketing.

THE ONLINE OFFLINE MARKETING REVOLUTION

Welcome to BridgeGAP Marketing, the online offline marketing revolution that focuses on optimizing the "connectors" across the various GAPs in your marketing media while always matching the message as prospects are connected by technology and smart bridges to their desired goal. It's the umbrella marketing genre that not only bridges our GAPs but connects all other methods of marketing.

If 20 years ago my professors had told me I'd be clicking on text to travel to some online destination, I'd have laughed out loud. Yet today, right before my eyes I can click my camera phone and it will translate a simple bar code from a flyer, print ad or billboard. Another click, and this time it's bridging the physical world to the mobile world in a flash. This is not an oddity from Ripley's "Believe It or Not," it's a marketing phenomenon already underway and just one of many bridges prospects will be traveling.

You're in for a treat as we explore this new world of marketing. BridgeGAP Marketing is the rocket fuel that will set your business on fire, but it's YOU who must first strike the match.