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Nokia, Intuit to launch marketing service for SMBs

Service announced at Nokia World aims to help small companies attract business through mobile-based marketing that targets neighborhood customers.

Nokia and Intuit are teaming up to offer small businesses a new service designed to grab more customers through mobile marketing.

Unveiled at Nokia World 2010 on Wednesday, the new service will target mobile subscribers with a series of ads and personalized offers for products and services that they can buy in their own neighborhoods. The goal is to help small and medium businesses (SMBs) better reach and communicate with their local customers.

To push out its ads precisely, the service will tap into such mobile technologies as location-based awareness and mapping, according to the companies.

In order to build and roll out the new service, Nokia will provide its know-how with mobile phones, while Intuit will contribute its experience dealing with small business customers. Further details were sparse, but the service is expected to launch before the end of the year, at which time more information will be revealed, said the two companies.

"Small businesses need every advantage to stay ahead of the pack in today's competitive environment," Alex Lintner, president of Intuit's Global Business Division, said in a statement. "We plan to offer them a way to strengthen customer relationships through targeted communications that increase sales by delivering more customer visits. We're applying the same proven formula we've used with QuickBooks to help small businesses succeed by better serving their customers."