In the article, Build a Budget, Find Sponsors, Promote Your Race, it says “The Internet will be your No. 1 medium to promote your race”. Using the internet on-the-go is something we all do, and why for an event like a 5k run, where promotions might be on postcards, flyers, or even on the radio, it is important to lead potential participants to a mobile-friendly internet location (a mobile website). Alan Whitehead, organizer of the Solstice Run, said this about using a mobile-friendly website with his current marketing campaigns, “It would be more effective for the consumer. It’s just a way of life now”. Whitehead is hip to realize the importance of technology in his marketing campaigns, and with over 20,000 postcards to be sent, and 11,000 email addresses to deliver a newsletter to, he makes a clear point that leveraging all these tools together is crucial.
Nielson predicts Smartphones to Overtake Feature Phones in U.S. by 2011, which means 1 out of 2 people walking by your flyer have the internet in their pockets, how can you look past this opportunity? The major problem with just relying on conversation or print media, is that if a person can’t “take it with them”, they soon forget about your event, and your sponsors become smug because no one showed up. A mobile website can provide a really simple way for a walker-by to both view the things you want to show them, as well as take it home, bookmark it for later, and even share it with others.
For most 5K races, the amount of information is usually better suited for a mobile website anyways; lets look at what most 5K flyers include:
To spend money on a full-size website to show this amount of information is really over-kill, and unless you are part of a sizeable campaign, there most likely is a small budget for marketing. A mobile site will also allow users to interact with the phone number and call from the same device they are using to view the information; or, in the same way, get directions with a single touch.
One of the largest hills to climb when planning a race will be getting sponsors to sign on; this article on Getting Sponsors puts it simply as “My recommendation is, get creative. Make a company a deal it can’t refuse.” Using a mobile site provides several “value add” opportunities when lining up sponsors and getting support for the race:
There are a couple ways that we suggest you direct people to your mobile website, because it is important that you make it easy. You have probably seen or heard of QR codes before, and they are a great way for users to get to your mobile website from a poster or flyer. QR codes do require a special “app” to be installed on the phone, so we always recommend putting a short-link on the flyer near the QR code as well. A short-link ensures that the user (who is most likely walking around, or on-the-go) can easily type in the URL to their mobile device.
We have written an entire article named Tips for Discovering your Mobile Website, which can give you more ideas and information about that topic.