Develop Brand Experiences On Mobile Phones
A while back, the agency I work for did a promotion where everyone who checked into a chain of bars on Facebook would get a free Barcardi Mojito. The promotion came from a simple insight about people. Being social animals we gravitate to places where our friends are. Retailing is known to be among the most social of business activities. Consumers visiting stores do so for a larger experience. This is the reason Nike, Apple and now Samsung have been operating brick and mortar shops. It is a place where the brand can be experienced in a unique way. A place where consumer`s dreams can be created and fulfilled.
Mobile and digital provide huge opportunities to create these experiences with larger groups of consumers. Brands creating talk of worthy experinces will have consumers marvel about them to their friends on social media. This creates advocacy. Retailers around the world are learning this quickly. One retailer Comqi aim to deliver a “connected experience“ across store signage, mobile, web and social media. They reward shoppers by getting them to particpate in real life events and create digital communities around their instore experiences
Retailers are also using mobile to deliver service. Shop front attendants carrying a mobile are able to access detailed product information quickly as well as stock availability. Consumers are way ahead where this is concerned. Recent research indiactes that 46 per cent of consumers in the UK conducted research on a product while in a store. This is often price comparison or information on features. Buyers of high end devices in Kenya are notorious for this habit. The mobile phone helps them extend their shop browsing over more shops and provides information they need to make decisions.
To get on board these developments it becomes important to first understand your customer and your brand intimately. You then create digital opportunities for the consumers to share the brand's experience . When you think about it, brands are animate beings that walk, talk, and do things just like humans. Planning how they talk to those they relate to is the first phase.
The second is of course choosing technology. The idea should be simplicity. Every visitor should be able to explore and experience the brand as well as engage with it. More importantly,the consumer should be able to share these experiences with their friends as this extends the experience and endorsement to others.
Accordng to the latest research from the CCK, more than 90 per cent of Kenyans access the internet on their mobiles. That means that if you don't have a mobile internet experience for them you could as well be running a business with some shops half open. While all the talk on mobile and the web may be intimidating and complex, it remains important that things change at your pace. Offering bar code readers to consumers who don't know how to use them may be cool but not useful, so do it at your pace and your consumers' pace .
Frank is Lead consultant at FMC and CEO at mobile agency sponge . email@example.com
The full length artie is avilable as retail white paper on www.spongegroup.com