Mobile is coming Mobile is coming Mobile is coming


How should I be taking advantage of mobile?


"How should I be taking advantage of mobile?"

It's a fairly straightforward question you might think. It's certainly one I am asked frequently given my background in the mobile industry. The specific questions that follow usually revolve around mobile acquisition channels such as search, display, SMS marketing and the plethora of other mobile marketing techniques. It seems that all people want to do is figure out how to sell their existing product through mobile. But this fundamentally misses the point.

Mobile and desktop are complementary but diffferent When you originally set-up your online business, you didn't jump in to ask what you should be doing with PPC. You asked what you should be offering the customer. You started with that core question.

This question remains true of mobile. The question every affiliate should be asking is; 'How do I take my core competencies and apply it to mobile to create a rich, engaging and differentiating customer proposition?'

The risk in most industries is that people simply see mobile as an extension of their desktop offering. While this approach will help you grow to a degree, it is hardly innovative and you can easily be overtaken by your competitors. Take the Yellow Pages, or 'Yell' as they are now known. When they moved online, they simply digitised their physical phonebook, while other people in the industry were experimenting with Google map integration and social features such as user ratings and feedback. Yell.com was out-innovated by the likes of Yelp (for restaurants] and TripAdvisor (for hotels), With the advancement of mobile, Yell had an opportunity to again assert their dominance in the space by leveraging their brand awareness. But while they were doing basic Google map integration their competitors were experimenting with augmented reality and full location integration. For example, the Yell mobile app only launched user reviews for the first time at the end of October this year!

Yell are a classic example of a company who thought of new platforms simply as a new way to distribute their existing proposition, failing to question how that platform could help them grow and adapt.

"If you have not considered how you can leverage the experience that mobile brings from a product and proposition perspective, then I am sorry to say that you are missing the point."

The gambling industry as a whole, and specifically casino affiliates, face exactly the same question. While many of you will be considering making a mobile app which takes your casino news, bonus and review content and makes it available on mobile, I promise there will be many other people thinking differently about this.

They will be thinking about how they can use a casino player's location to create an engaging service for them. They will be working on augmented reality apps which allow people to stand on the Vegas Strip and see what offers the various casinos have in real-time. They will be thinking about how to integrate with the mobile hardware, such as the camera. They will be thinking about how to use push notifications to bring timely relevant messages to their customers.

If you have not considered how you can leverage the experience that mobile brings from a product and proposition perspective, then I am sorry to say that you are missing the point. I would temper this with a word of warning: mobile has some serious weaknesses..

1. Internet connectivity is not consistent.
2. The experience of data entry is a nightmare - nobody wants to enter credit card details and billing info on a two inch screen.
3. The interface is not designed for deep, imersive experiences. It is better suited to dipping in and out of.
When considering your mobile offering, you should also consider how desktop and mobile can work together to play to each other's strengths.


Take Ticketmaster as an example. The Ticket search' experience is much more suited to the desktop than mobile, however, the actual ticket delivery is far more suited to mobile. Ticket-master effectively identified mobile ticketing as a differentiating feature and made it core to their mobile strategy rather than trying to advertise the fact you could search and buy tickets on mobile... something people prefer to do on desktop.

So before you jump into learning all about mobile marketing techniques, I strongly encourage you to consider your mobile proposition first. If you don't... someone else will.
 
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