Mobile Marketing Revolution

JASON SPERO: I think a
conversation about mobile starts with the customer. And what’s happened over the
course of the last three years has been an absolute revolution
of the usage of a mobile device. The devices are always with us
and all the usage patterns show that this is a part
of our everyday life. We’re talking to customers about
how to think about how their customer engages with
them, whether that’s how do they acquire a new customer or
how do they take care of the customers they have. They have
to be infusing mobile throughout that marketing
conversation. It’s funny, it starts with the
basics because mobile means so many different things, right? It means tablets, it
means location, it means all of this. But the first thing you have
to do is be there when they come looking for you. You have to have the most basic
asset, which is a mobile website that thinks about how
someone on a relatively small screen that’s a touchscreen with
a device that knows where it is, is going to want
to engage your brand or your service. So it’s funny to say it, but
the first thing you have to have is a mobile website. And that then can build into
a lot of different things. But it’s a very basic starting
point and a lot of people overlook it. And from there, we can grow
people’s efforts and work with them to help them understand how
a tablet might bring them into a new segment, or about
how the mobile device may enable them to extend their
relationship with their customer into a different
time of day. There’s lots of good examples
about people who are taking advantage of mobile and
presenting opportunities that embrace these devices. I’d point to Priceline. Priceline has a relationship
with people who want to make hotel reservations. And what they found is mobile
allowed them to extend that relationship and to capture an
entirely new use case, which is the traveler who realizes
they need a hotel that night, or who’s stuck for another
day, or who finds himself overlaid as we all have been
when a flight is missed or all of that, who needs a
hotel instantly. They were finding an enormous
amount of the traffics their mobile website was making
same-day reservations and often within 15 or 20 miles. And so it’s added an entire
dimension and a whole new revenue stream with how they
think about their business. I think the desktop and a
tablet and a mobile are complementary. I think what you’re going to
have is, you’re going to start to have the blurring of
the lines because– I don’t have a desktop phone,
I have a laptop. And I take that with
me and it’s got connectivity in a lot of places. I think what we’re finding is,
you have a context where you are mobile that may not be
specific to your phone or your tablet or your desktop. But we’re finding that people
are using these devices in entirely new context at
different times of day and on the weekends. And so think about the use
case of using a device on public transportation, or when
you’re walking around your neighborhood, or when you’re
sitting at home on the couch. These are entirely different use
cases brought about by the connectivity and the portability
of these devices. So bringing it back to your
question, inevitably, some people are going to just
replicate their experience from a desktop environment. But I believe fairly
passionately that that is underutilizing the capabilities
and the rich data around mobile to deliver a
mobile-specific experience that takes advantage
of position and rich new contexts. I think any equation about
building products for new environments that are as
disruptive as the mobile phone has to be a dialogue
with the customer. You’re going to be in a rapid
iteration cycle where you’re putting things out there. This is true of Google, this is
true of anybody building a product, or this is true of a
brand that’s trying to engage their customer. You have to put something out
there and then you have to watch the way the users engage
with that offering. And that means analyze
the data. Watch how that’s different
among different segments. And then evolve your offering
and test hypotheses. I think we don’t know enough yet
about mobile to know, here is the exact template and map
to how to engage a user on a mobile phone. I think what we do know is that
users are engaging with these in entirely new ways. And so what we’re recommending
to people is, get something out there that you think might
be something they’d engage with and then watch the
way the user engages. And from my perspective,
the user teaches us. The user is teaching us what
they want by electing how they engage with what we offer
them in mobile. So it’s a dialogue, and
I don’t think it’s pushed to the consumer. And I certainly don’t think the
consumer is able to write us an essay about
what they want. And so you have to be constantly
engaging that customer and watching as
the data comes back.

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