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A few times each month, we come across new information from our screened panel of experts that somehow just makes sense in the overall scheme of things. We might even test it before promoting it, but you'll know that each post comes with a practical perspective for our industry.

Mobile Talking Points: 8 Key Points to Help Plan for Mobile

Mobile is here to stay, but understanding how it applies to our equipment business and existing web and communication strategy can be a bit tricky.  Whether your an OEM, dealer/distributor or vendor that sells to this group, it’s incredibly important to have some perspective on just how mobile apps, strategy and the efficiencies they bring start with some key points to consider before doing anything.  To that end, please find a brief list of talking points as we look forward in 2013:

Key Concept: Mobile is one piece of the puzzle. It should augment good web and communications strategy. Mobile might be considered the “cliff notes” to good desktop and web strategy, but it is essential to address this as more users turn to mobile solutions.

Start Small: It’s important to look for quick wins. There is potential for low level entry points projects to experience the efficiencies first hand, manage buy-in and feedback and design a true improvement to any existing business process.

Deal Customization: There is opportunity to bring the traditional “brick and mortar” goal of more customer spend  into the mobile experience by offering deals, discounts and incentives to either spend more, return for more services in the future or generally be notified of something they’d like to hear more about.

Product & Service Reviews: How you collect, use testimonials and case studies that emphasize the “positive” to combat any negative reviews of products and/or services is an easy and important element to good customer service strategy.  Mobile make this as easy as possible, and bypasses some of the confusing social media strategy that is out there.

People & Story: Mobile can potentially weave a story using testimonials, case studies to highlight success stories with products and services very easily.  Video and photo compression speeds and technology, and a recorded happy customer testimonial are easy to generate, share and be notified when a customer has an issue that needs managing.

Product Feedback Loop: Mobile can assist with creating product feedback loops and improving customer response times via direct messaging. This can assist with collecting data and managing negative reviews when customers aren’t happy with a product or service.

Mobile & The Desktop: The goal is a good user experience, one that is connected to both desktop and mobile devices. Good SEO strategy accounts for the fact that search engines index desktop web platforms differently than mobile platforms, so it’s important to design user experiences that make this as seamless as possible.

Needlessly Complex: Many projects are needlessly complex because they don’t begin with the end in mind. A good discovery process would reveal ways to ensure the mobile initiatives succeed at a simple level first (kind of like driving a 49 Buick, reliable, consistent compared to a high performing car). You can generally get where you need to go, but it’s important to understand the pace that best meets needs… and will lead to success.

Planning for New Technologies: The pace of change and introduction of new mobile devices and platforms is happening quickly, and revealing incredible opportunities for those companies that plan properly.  Some brief topics to consider might be:

  • Windows Phone 8: it is a viable browser for first time and the technology on par with other (IOS, Android etc.)
  • Blackberry 10: It’s finally a good browser, but there is poor public opinion, history and the future might be questionable (from battery replacement… seriously?… to 1% of total market, to acquisition, to “who knows”).  The point is, it’s good to know about and plan for.
  • IE 10 Browser Possibilities: The newly released browser makes many things possible now to a huge user group of your customers.
  • HTML5 & Javascript & Animation: Pardon the super tech speak, but Windows Phone 8 shored up deficiencies with these technologies that will improve your customers user experience and allow you to promote your business much more effectively.
  • Project Experience: Today, experience is not measured in terms of years, it’s by project. Windows Phone 8 is an example… not many development companies have experience, yet is vitally important to plan for any medium