Tag Archives: iphone

Mobile: The Tip of the Spear for Electronic Commerce

I was speaking at MobileCON 2012 in San Diego a week ago and it was amazing how many people were talking about BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) and how prevalent smartphones have become.

Palm VIIMy first wireless device was the Palm VII in 2001 and while it was very cutting edge for the time, using it to perform more than basic functions like reading e-mail or news updates was arduous. I did it because it was ‘cool’ and I didn’t mind spending three times as long to do something like order movie tickets than it would take through traditional methods. My wife, however, would never think of paying a premium for technology just for the sake of being cool in a nerdy sort of way and that’s what ‘smartphones’ were up until 2007.

When Apple released the original iPhone all that changed. All of the sudden the use of a ‘smartphone’ was so easy and so intuitive that it’s use no longer slowed us but now made us more efficient. The massive adoption of iOS, Android and Windows Mobile devices has finally given rise to the possibility of real-time personalized, location-based marketing and commerce experiences because we have become fully committed to our mobile phones.

Today we are so intrinsically tied to our mobile devices and we are loathe to part with them. There are over a billion smartphones in use today and 84% of us say we couldn’t go a single day without our smartphone. 65% of us would rather leave our lunch at home versus our smartphone and half of us would rather leave our (real) wallet at home instead of our smartphone.

Mobiles have truly become a part of us and retailers and marketers needs to take advantage of that in new and innovative ways. New approaches to making the shopping experience easier and providing more suitable offers for the consumer; ways that increase their efficiency and make their lives simpler.

Augmented Reality for In-Store OffersIdeas like geo-fencing like BestBuy to provide real-time contextual offers to customers who are in the proximity of a location at a certain time. Or providing the ability to create shopping lists online at the desktop or mobile and then being directed through in-store mapping to efficiently pick up those items. Or going beyond bar code scanning to ARISTO (augmented reality for in-store offers) like Wal-Mart providing real-time product updates and pricing in a visual manner within the store.

How about gathering sentiment and consumer data directly from your customers, their tendencies and habits as well as their opinions and choices? A plan for big data and real-time  analytics to gather insight about the customer helps deliver more precise offers that have more meaning and are more likely to be accepted.

How is your company using the mobile devices of your customers as the ‘tip of the spear’ for your personalized commerce initiatives?

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iPhone 5 Wishes More Related to Service Providers than Apple

iPhone 5 Desires

On October 4th, 2011 Apple will unveil the new iPhone 5, along with iOS 5 and it’s new iCloud service (which I explained in an earlier post I believe to be the most strategic play in the trio).

A quick look at this info-graphic from the Wall Street Journal though shows us that most of what consumers want in their new iPhone is more applicable to the communications service provider than it is Apple.

Of the 6 items listed that would cause customers to upgrade – two are hardware requests for longer battery life and a better camera while three are in the wheel house of the CSP – unlimited data, no contracts and no-cost wifi tethering.

The final one – unlimited storage in iCloud – is the kicker. As I said in my earlier post this is absolutely a need that a CSP could have filled – and they could have charged for it. They wouldn’t have even been limited to the iOS platform either – allowing Windows Phone 7 and Android customers to participate as well. By doing so they could completely change their relationship with their customers – turning them from antagonists to advocates – and making them far less likely to be willing to switch providers.

If not careful, CSPs will be regulated to being a commodity interconnection service to connect two digital points in space without providing any inherent or additional value or seeing any revenue from what transpires between those points.

Get relevant!

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