1 January 2014
SoLoMo is an acronym of "Socialization Localization Mobilization", which signifies integrating social networks (Social), a physical location (Local), and a Smartphone (Mobile). It is an integration of location-based sharing technologies and search results of mobile search engines. SoLoMo was developed as a result of the increasing use of tablets and Smartphones that include GPS tracking services. It is a term from the field of marketing and is used for designing a marketing strategy when advertising a product.
Three components of SoLoMo:
The social platform is used by the organization to promote and assimilate its message. Nowadays, the (external) social networks, and nor the organizations, are the main source of information. The base for social networks is the knowledge of the masses, both users and customers that consult with friends and other customers prior to purchases. They search for tips, read reviews and share experiences. The organizations, therefore, must heavily consider the way in which they promote their products both directly and indirectly using these platforms.
Focus area: The utilization of tracking services by cell phone users is constantly increasing. Organizations can reach customers according to a geographical focus and "push" messages. Furthermore, customers can be reached through location-based search engines.
Using Smartphones has changes the way in which we use the internet and it has become more accessible and mobile. The mobile phone enables organizations to overcome the difficulties in identifying users' exact location by using different designated applications.
SoLoMo serves both clients and organizations;
The customers are both information suppliers (posts and ratings) and information consumers (push updates, coupons and promotion of local businesses). Furthermore, Smartphones have turned internet customers mobile and contact different organizations and brands during the process. This forces organizations to formulate a combined strategy, e.g. posting a check-in from Facebook on Foursquare. SoLoMo enables providing customers with what they want when and where they want it.
The organizations use SoLoMo as part of their Knowledge Management. It enables the organization to transfer Knowledge by "pushing" it whenever needed, according to the customers' fields of interest. Different patterns can be viewed in different areas and combining local results with the results o the search engines can represent data and provide information concerning the size of the local internet market. SoLoMo enables organizations to utilize the knowledge of the masses in order to increase profit.
In order to understand the affect SoLoMo can have on an organization we can review the case of Nike, Inc. In the past, most advertisement campaigns were based on sports celebrities as athletic role models. However, during the last years Nike has realized that the market has changed and is increasingly focusing on the knowledge of the masses through social media. Nike understood that the client, and not the product, is the main aspect nowadays. In response, they established a new division solely designated for the development of technological products that enhance the company's connection to its customers. They developed Nike+, a product that combines a website, an application for Apple devices and an electronic sensor for shoes. The sensor measures steps, distance, calories, routes etc. and is synchronized with the application as well as GPS and music playlists. Following the activity, it is possible to save all data on the website and share routes (by category and vicinity) and achievements with others. Nike caused their clients to share their knowledge and experience with other customers, thus creating an inclusive vision of a desired lifestyle. They utilized technologies and the knowledge of the masses in order to expand their clients' involvement in promotion of their brand, ultimately enhancing it.
In conclusion, SoLoMo is a strategy based on knowledge shared and consumed by users of the social networks via their Smartphones according to their location. A successful SoLoMo strategy enables an active mutual discourse between the clients and the organization, a discourse based on the exchange of information, advertisement, sharing and criticism. Furthermore, it changes the consumer's behavior by increasing his/her involvement in the brand and enhancing his/her connection to it.