We are not mobile enough. Brands are under investing in meeting customers at all of the mobile touch points just as they are under investing in social media. But business leaders want to lead and do more in mobile.
Media companies, brands, technologists, carriers and Ogilvy will flock to Barcelona to the Mobile World Congress 2013 to not just pace the trade floor for promising mobile solutions beyond the obvious, but they will also attend insightful keynotes like the panel on Vertical Disruption featuring GM, American Heart Association and Qualcomm and the panel on Mobile Innovation 2023 offering a near-future vision.
We will publish throughout the event and distill what we learn into useful takeaways just as we did for CES. Our own Martin Lange will be leading the charge and you can follow his team’s Tumblr here. Start off with their ‘5 Trends to Watch For…’
Mobile in the Middle of SoMoVa
Marketers need a “stimulus package” for mobile. They need an artificial way to motivate their marketers to commit to making mobile a core expertise and a primary way they engage customers. Someday, mobile will just be how we engage people from smartphones to the tablet-of-the-future to the ‘internet of things.’
But until that future arrives, and to ensure it does, we need ways to spark the imagination of marketers to put mobile first now - to make it routine and consistent. Clearly, mobile usage broadly defines varies market-by-market and consumer context-by-context. Still, you would be hard pressed to examine a market anywhere in the world and not be able to identify ways in which mobile is changing the customer journey.
Many would say that mobile (and social) don’t fundamentally change how marketing works. Maybe. To help ace marketers focus on mobile and social behaviors, I would suggest a simple rubric with checklists to help us all put these considerations front of mind.
Social + Mobile + Value = Successful Marketing
Okay, okay, that’s not all that goes into “successful marketing.” These ingredients are now essential, however.
Brands can increase the social qualities of their marketing and communications by designing programs around the “Principles of Social Design.” These are the lessons we have learned that explain why people share all types of word of mouth (i.e. “earned media”). The more they do this and learn their own context-specific principles the more they will meet consumer’s needs.
Likewise, brands can increase the mobile accessibility and utility by designing programs for the customer across the heterogeneous experiences of mobile. That means understanding the context in which we reach for our tablets at home on the couch or press on our smartphones standing in the aisle. Google’s Multiscreen Study continues to be a great reference that starts to articulate useful context.
We need the equivalent “principles of mobile design” to serve as a checklist to inform creative and strategic work from all marketers not just the token mobile experts. At the very least, our checklists include “…the inherent advantages found in the mobile world: location sensing, cameras and instant access to social networks.”
Every marketer thinks about the additional value they are delivering to customers whether in the form of complimentary recipes posted on Facebook or via a mobile app or something much bigger like a Nike Fuel where a whole new business model is inspired by technology and mobility. What is the core value we are trying to dial up? How is that being enabled or amplified via our mobile and social-first design?
If brand marketers and their teams had this simple rubric and the questionnaires for each axis in front of them as they designed marketing and communications programs, it might serve as a stimulus package to making SoMoVa central to how we serve our consumers/customers today.