At Fanminder, we’re on the front lines of a re-invention of marketing. The days of expensive local newspaper or Yellow Pages ads are fast waning. Direct mail lost its punch years ago. And even email is on the ropes, knocked about by a bevy of real-time communications services such as texting, Twitter, and FourSquare.

With consumers having abandoned the old ways of finding you, it’s a survival imperative to learn new ways of engaging with your customers. At the same time, a crop of new tools are emerging that make it easier than ever to engage those consumers most likely to spend at your establishment your current customers.

Let’s call these new tools Fanbase Marketing Services, ok? And few things in fanbase marketing are hotter, or more effective, than Mobile Marketing. While there’s as many variations of mobile marketing as there are of Lady Gaga?s outfits, here are five immediately-implementable ideas drawn from the recent text message marketing experiences of our customers:

1. Ditch the Fishbowl or Guestbook! Open an account with a text message marketing service and watch your customers whip out their phones and simply text your business? name to a 5 or 6 digit # to join your fan club. Voila! Hands-off list building.

2. Give an incentive to join your Fan Club. Think of your incentive as essentially building your own marketing capability, instead of perpetually renting? access to new customers from a Valpak or Google. Incentives can be Dollar Off, a Discount, Bring a Friend just make it simple to get and as big as you can afford.

3. Send an Instant Promotion Once a Week. In under five minutes, you can use a text message service to schedule a months? worth of promotions that go out on slow days. No graphic designer needed. And best of all, each message is typically read within 15 minutes.

4. Give Your Customers What They Want. Often, it’s a deal. Daily Deal sites like Groupon prove today’s consumers are thirsty for deep discounts. Or it could simply be education or inspiration. A fitness center customer of ours sends each new customer one text message a day for her first ten days. Here’s a recent one: It’s a new week ladies! GREAT workouts and accountability = results? Feedback is off the charts.

5. Make it a dialogue. Use your new mobile list to poll your customers with simple questions for feedback such as How are we doing? One online retailer of baby gifts asked her customers to find the birth date of her baby girl on her website. The winner received a shirt. She was shocked when she booked 7 new sales that morning.

There you go! Five ideas in five minutes to grow your fanbase and sales.

What tactics do you use to engage your fans using mobile marketing?

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