In very simple terms: It’s because the vast majority of brands haven’t developed a clear understanding about how people really use their mobile devices – and where their brand has the best potential to fit in.
In a recent piece in AdAge, Josh Bernoff says that your customers think in terms of ‘mobile moments’ – specific times when they need information that only the phone can provide. A number of companies have created very successful apps based on an understanding of what will be truly useful. These include Delta Airlines, Starbucks, Huffington Post, Basecamp, Trip Advisor and others.
Remember that your customers have precise needs at any given point in time – when they want to know what traffic is like between San Jose and Redwood City, or what their current savings balance is, or who posted the best photo of the recent camping trip on Facebook.
The phone is their lifeline now, and the only question is: what is your brand contributing to help them find what they need? This requires some very different thinking than – where’s our next best marketing opportunity? Brands need to embrace the notion that they can be part of the consumer’s ‘tool kit’ – to help them solve a specific problem at any given moment.
Bernoff calls the situation of what consumers want today and the reality of what most brands are providing the ‘mobile marketing strategy gap’. In other words, after many iterations, most companies have figured out what it takes to have a successful web presence. But when it comes to mobile there’s much less focus – it’s just not thought to be that important. Yet.
But the reality is, for many consumers – especially younger ones – the mobile solutions your brand provides are MORE important than what your website looks like. The potential to build stronger relationships with customers is undeniably mobile-centric. Give people what they want there, and your brand will become a part of their everyday activities. You can’t ask for much more than that.