Adam Lavine is the CEO of FunMobility, a mobile-first agency that delivers interactive marketing campaigns using proprietary HTML5 nanosites.

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Adam was the founding chair of the Mobile Marketing Association's mobile coupon standards committee, defining industry standards for the multibillion-dollar segment of mobile coupons, offers, incentives, and rewards.

I invited Adam to Marketing Smarts to talk about the interactive digital campaign FunMobility conducted in partnership with Chiquita Bananas and the motion picture Minions, the evolution of mobile marketing and gamification, and the role each can play in your marketing mix.

Here are some highlights from my conversation with Adam:

Think beyond mobile apps. Design for HTML5 (05:00): "Everything we do does not require any app download. We're really big on HTML5 because you can instantly publish, you don't go through a third-party gateway like Google or iTunes; and, from the consumer side, they can activate immediately just by clicking on a link. So, pretty much everything we do is HTML5....

"Both [apps and HTML5] run on devices, but they're really different technology stacks and ecosystems. With an app, you get more personally identifiable information about a consumer and there's more of a robust ecosystem.... HTML5 is more of a mainstream technology that you can use to instantly activate and engage at things like point of sale or an event or a click on a mobile app.... Apps are pretty much for the whales—the five percent of your consumer base that's really rabid and loves your brand. [For them] apps are perfect, but for everybody want an HTML5 strategy."

To drive engagement, use gamification in your marketing campaign (06:30): "Our big goal was to drive opt-ins. On a raw traffic basis, one out of every five visitors created an account. (You had to create an account to actually win prizes.) Of those, over half opted in to receive future communications from Chiquita. Average session length: People would spend about four and a half minutes every time they visited the site because there were a lot of activities. There was this carnival banana shot game where you're throwing bananas at targets, and there was a speed memory matcher game with different 'Minions' characters over history. There was a long hang time.

"About 10% of the audience came back over 100 times. That really blew us away, how engaged the audience was, especially because there were no reminders that went out or anything. They just came back. And I think it's because we put an instant-win mechanic in with a lot of digital prizes, like power-ups for the games and things like that, so every hour somebody could come back and win a prize and a chance at the sweeps, and I think that instant-win button you could press really drove consumers to go back and engage with this thing at scale."

Always ask: "What's in it for my audience?" (07:51) "When I talk to a client about what they want to do from a mobile marketing perspective, a lot of times marketers will think, 'Well, I want to get this data, and I want to get my brand across, and I want to drive traffic, and I want all these things,' but you have to ask the question, 'What's in it for the consumer?' You have to look from their point of view and think why would they want to engage with you. What are you you giving them? With gamification, you're inherently giving them an experience and a reward for interacting with your brand, and I'm seeing this as a wave—gamification 3.0, if you will—where mobile can be incorporated into a digital rewards-driven experience. For certain brands, it's very, very powerful."

Love your whales (your brand's most passionate fans) (13:40): "Shower them with love. Once you understand who your real advocates are, you want to give them an opportunity to really engage and drive a discussion with your brand. Most social activity now...happens on a mobile device, so by giving your advocates rewards, incentives, gifts... Visa has this really incredible program where they just...give a random gift that just comes out of left field for all their customers, small and big, and I think that's so powerful, to just go to your advocates and give them something, as opposed to trying to always sell them something. Mobile can help you identify who that is."

Learn more about FunMobility at 

Adam and I talked about much more, including the future of mobile (from QR codes to NFC), and even his juggling career that spanned two continents, so be sure to listen to the entire show, which you can do above, or download the mp3 and listen at your convenience. Of course, you can also subscribe to the Marketing Smarts podcast in iTunes or via RSS and never miss an episode!

This episode brought to you by the 2015 B2B Marketing Forum, October 21-23 in Boston, Mass. Register TODAY and join us to make some marketing magic!

Music credit: Noam Weinstein.

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