Published on

  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide


  1. 1. Mobile MarketerTHE NEWS LEADER IN MOBILE MARKETING, MEDIA AND COMMERCE www.MobileMarketer.com ® Classic Guide to Mobile Commerce A CLASSIC GUIDE November 25, 2008 $295
  2. 2. Drive interaction, trial and revenue by providing consumers timely and relevant offers. 138 million Americans regularly send text messages. HipCricket can help you reach them. With over 24,000 mobile marketing campaigns under our belt, we have the expertise to successfully grow your business. Work with us and you’ll have a true partner in your hip pocket. We offer industry leading client support, training and technology. More importantly, our team will leverage its vast mobile marketing experience to help you develop and execute strategic campaigns with measurable results. We’ll also share proven techniques on how to build an opt-in database for future marketing efforts. Contact us today to speak with one of our brand experts by texting COMMERCE to 36617 or by calling 425.452.1111. www.hipcricket.com © 2008 HipCricket, Inc. All Rights Reserved. All other brands, registrations, trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.
  3. 3. 2 INTRODUCTION Mobile commerce: It’s a reality By Giselle Abramovich BASIC 3 The current state of mobile commerce By Steve Timpson, Siteminis 5 Mobile commerce: The importance of the end- user experience By Mike Beech, Acision 6 Mobile is not the tiny Web By Jason Cianchette, Liquid Wireless 7 Mobile commerce: Leveraging the targeted impulse purchase opportunity By Alan Sultan, Acuity Mobile 8 From the desktop to the mobile phone: Advancing mobile commerce a single-click at a time By Michael Dulong, Billing Revolution 10 How content providers can profit from mobile search, on- and off-deck By Stephen Burke, MCN 11 How to optimize your Web site for mobile By Marc Peter, on-Idle INTERMEDIATE 12 Reaching consumers at point of need key to mobile commerce By Brad Bostic, ChaCha Search 13 How to achieve mobile marketing success with optimized landing pages By Kim Ann King, SiteSpect 14 American shoppers turn to coupons during economic slowdown By Steven Gray, Money Mailer 15 The role of idle screen in driving mobile commerce By Jon Jackson, Mobile Posse 16 FEATURE Sears wins with mobile commerce By Giselle Abramovich, Mobile Marketer 18 Mobile banking’s place in the ecosystem By Michael Foschetti, Mobisix 19 Customer service leads the way in mobile travel Web adoption By Gerry Samuels, Mobile Travel Technologies ADVANCED 20 Beyond the handset: Leveraging mobile distribution points to reach underserved markets By Moneet Singh, MPower Mobile 21 An evolution revolution: SMS transforms mobile commerce By Chuck Drake, Clickatell 22 Hate crowds? Want your mobile content to stand out? Try thinking globally, acting locally and embracing the mobile Web By Ray Anderson, Bango 23 Banks and carriers finally realizing the power of mobile commerce By Matthew Talbot, Sybase 365 24 So, now you have a mobile site. What’s next? By Richard Eicher, Skycore 25 Personalization: Teenage sex all over again By Mory Bahar, Personal Remedies 27 Mobile commerce: The Legal Landscape By Brian W. Esler and David Rice, Miller Nash 28 Mobile sellers face technological and legal challenges By Gonzalo E. Mon, Kelley Drye & Warren 29 12 tips for building a mobile site By Marci Troutman, Siteminis 30 Camera-phone mobile commerce By Rob DeStefano, Mobile Data Systems 31 A universal compliance standard will jump-start the mobile commerce industry By Eric Holmen, SmartReply 32 ‘Tis the season for mobile By Conrad Lisco, 5th Finger M CCOONNTTEENNTTSS CCLLAASSSSIICC GGUUIIDDEE TTOO MMOOBBIILLEE CCOOMMMMEERRCCEE Mobile Marketer Gain more weight Read Mobile Marketer Subscribe to the free Mobile Marketer Daily newsletter at http://www.MobileMarketer.com/newsletter.php Mobile Marketer THE NEWS LEADER IN MOBILE MARKETING, MEDIA AND COMMERCE
  4. 4. IINNTTRROODDUUCCTTIIOONN MMoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee:: IItt’’ss aa rreeaalliittyy PAGE 2 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE Mickey Alam Khan Editor in Chief mickey@mobilemarketer.com Giselle Abramovich Associate Editor giselle@mobilemarketer.com Dan Butcher Staff Reporter dan@mobilemarketer.com Robert DiGioia Design Consultant PublissMail@aol.com ADVERTISING Jodie Solomon Director of Advertising Sales ads@mobilemarketer.com 401 Broadway, Suite 1408 New York, NY 10013 Tel: 212-334-6305 Fax: 212-334-6339 Email: editor@mobilemarketer.com Web site: www.MobileMarketer.com For newsletter subscriptions: http://www.mobilemarketer.com/ newsletter.php For advertising rates: http://www.mobilemarketer.com/ cms/general/1.html Mobile Marketer covers news and analysis of mobile marketing, media and commerce. The franchise comprises MobileMarketer.com, the Mobile Marketer Daily newsletter and www.MobileNewsLeader.com. 2008 Napean LLC. All rights reserved. R etail giants Target, Sears and Wal-Mart and fashion houses Chloé, Dolce & Gabbana and Dior all went mobile this year, proving that mobile commerce is here to stay. The launch of the iPhone 3G, BlackBerry Storm and the G1 Android-en- abled phone proved that this industry is capable of getting over the small- screen challenge. The fact of the matter is that mobile commerce isn’t just something mar- keters are dabbing their feet into. They are slowly starting to jump in full- throttle. Retailers such as GameStop are using mobile coupons to drive consumers in store. If that’s not mobile commerce, I don’t know what is. I think for the first time we can proudly say that 2008 was the year for mo- bile commerce. Yes, the channel still has ways to go. Yes, there are still some consumers who don’t trust mobile. But isn’t that always the case? Let’s look back to the beginning of the Internet and ecommerce. Consumers had all the same doubts about ecommerce as they do today with mobile commerce. It was a challenge that the industry faced and ecommerce companies and the software and technology companies that serve them overcame. The same will be true for mobile commerce because, let’s face it, it is here and it isn’t going away. It’s no exaggeration when I say that mobile commerce will soon change the shopping habits of consumers just like the Internet already has done. Remember the mobile channel is more personal than any other and there’s no doubt that well-thought out mobile commerce sites and services will strengthen the bonds between brands and consumers. However, there are still brands and companies that are new-comers to the mobile commerce space and don’t know where to begin. This guide aims to help advertising agencies, service providers, site de- velopers, ad networks, analytics companies and others find their way around the mobile commerce industry. The list of contributors to this guide includes representatives from 5th Fin- ger, Bango, Acision, Acuity Mobile, Billing Revolution, ChaCha, Click- atell, Kelley Drye & Warren, Liquid Wireless, MCN, Miller Nash, Mobile Posse, Mobisix, Money Mailer, MPower Mobile, MTT, on-Idle, Personal Remedies, Siteminis, SiteSpect, Skycore, SmartReply and Sybase 365. The articles offer best-practice tips, educational points of view and analysis. The case study on retail giant Sears’ mobile strategy is worth reading. The authors of the 20-plus articles in this guide play a vital role in the mo- bile commerce ecosystem. Their insights and analysis will help you in your mobile commerce efforts. We thank these senior executives for their time and hard work. To editor in chief Mickey Alam Khan, staff reporter Dan Butcher and di- rector of ad sales Jodie Solomon: Thank you for your help and guidance in producing this guide. A special thanks to Rob DiGioia for his art direction and overall produc- tion of this guide. Please read Mobile Marketer’s Classic Guide to Mobile Commerce from cover to cover and circulate it to your friends, colleagues, clients and prospects. Also, visit http://www.mobilemarketer.com and sign up for our free newsletters that offer the latest news and analysis on mobile marketing, media and commerce. We hope you benefit from this guide and look forward to featuring your mobile commerce wisdom and work in the next. Giselle Abramovich giselle@mobilemarketer.com
  5. 5. By Steve Timpson In this column, we investigate what’s available for a traditional Internet site to use in transitioning to the mobile in- terface. Most sites transfer their entire content onto small mobile screens. Despite the significant buzz about the iPhone and its Internet inter- face, it suffers inherent issues, including its small screen size, which must receive content and load from larger PC/Mac formats, minimal market penetration, and competition from other smartphones in the marketplace. This scenario often creates long waits for text, links and function- ality to load, followed by another significant delay as the images load on top of one another. The images shrink to fit the screen and, in most cases, become unreadable. Sites therefore become linear, meaning that the pages scroll at more than 20 times the height of the screen to fit all the content and images. After the first page loads, pass- words, usernames, and most function- ality are clickable but not functional, meaning that users can click through to the next screen, but data collection behind the scenes does not always work, leaving the user frustrated. Several different scenarios cur- rently exist in the mobile commerce marketplace, yet they still do not pro- vide a real solution for companies that want to manage their brand and offer their consumers a user-friendly inter- face to view products and make mobile purchases. WAP approach The Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) represents the most widely used solution to date for mobile con- tent and mobile functionality. It takes content designed for the PC/Mac world and forces its con- formity with the mobile platform, which requires removing some con- tent and alienating the original user interface and functionality to make sites fit the mobile platform. Specifically, WAP technology removes anything that is not mobile compatible, often completely destroying the usability, intended flow, and brand of the site. With this approach, the mobile Internet provides a difficult interface for end users and the general public therefore avoids the mobile Internet. Internet Web sites generally are created with one platform in mind, namely, the PC/Mac world. The Major League Baseball site (http://wap.mlb.com) provides an example of an ecommerce site designed for the PC/Mac platform that has been forced onto a mobile platform through the WAP approach. All commerce charges sent through this site are added to the cus- tomer’s phone bill, because the functionality does not flow properly through WAP. The .mobi approach Another commonly used option, .mobi, provides an extension that retailers and companies may use to guide consumers to a URL that be- comes, for example, http://url.mobi. This extension also does not feature any software that rebuilds the site but instead allows the site to be viewed as it would in WAP or by pulling all data from the large screen to the smaller screen in smaller, nonfunctional versions. The BMW mobile site at http://bmw.mobi offers an example. Most retailers have not purchased their .mobi URL, which creates the concern that any company or individ- ual could purchase the .mobi exten- sion of a retailer for its own gain. If a domain name with the .mobi extension is available, anyone may purchase it for their own purposes, which could result in significant se- curity concerns. The “one site for all” approach In this third approach, all content on a PC/Mac site forces itself into the mobile application as best as it can, which simply does not work. The text and links populate first, which can take a full two minutes, and once that process finishes, the images start to load in, one on top of another, until the site is completely pushed into the mobile screen. The entire site therefore gets crammed together to fit in a space it was not designed to fit, creating site confusion and difficult site navigation. The Bloomingdale’s site at http://www.bloomingdales.com of- fers an example. Note that the entire screen must finish loading before users may click through to log in. When a user clicks the next screen, the long loading process for all data and images follows the same tedious process and so on through- out the site. Should users choose to return to a previous page, they discover that the pages do not cache. In other words, the information is not stored in the mobile browser windows and users must again wait for the entire page to reload to view it again. Each page follows this download process, making it (next page) MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 3 TThhee ccuurrrreenntt ssttaattee ooff mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee BBAASSIICC
  6. 6. (from page 3) nearly impossible to navigate sites, let alone buy from them. Even if consumers know exactly which product they want to pur- chase, and the exact path to reach it, smartphones still demand an esti- mated 15 minutes to find the product and add it to a shopping cart, which rarely works on the small screen. Thus, the overall effort represents a waste of time and energy and makes mobile commerce impossibility for most retailers. Free shipping on mobile commerce Free shipping on mobile commerce purchases or should I pay more for the mobile commerce experience? It is surprising that the question of whether the mobile shopping experience should differ from that of the normal PC/Mac experience when it comes to service. Yes, there will be a difference in the user interface due to the screen size. There will most certainly be differences in the amount of infor- mation a customer receives or their patience to wait to receive it. Let’s say for the sake of argument, that the issues of imaging and functionality are overcome. What remains the same is the drive for online retailers to improve conversion and expand their market base. It would seem that the same laws that affect the market place on the PC/Mac world would be the same in the mobile world. If you offer free shipping and other discounts to entice shoppers to buy through your site, you would extend those same offers on the mobile site. In fact, the same data-based driven marketing strategies would be deployed in marketing your mobile site. Wouldn’t it be great that the user does not have to worry about land- ing on any other site than your everyday .com page? The technology is there to do that, but few have moved in that direction – yet. In the end, mobile sites will grow based on simple economics, slow at first and then with the rush as water through a broken dam. How long that will take is a crap-shoot guess at best right now, but it will be sooner than you think. The use of special applications to make sites work and the use of text marketing to get people to a mobile-optimized site will rise and then wither away as both Internet commerce owners and users become comfortable with the technology, security and mostly ease of use. Therein lays the answer to the question of free shipping. The mobile commerce strategy will simply be an extension of the online PC/Mac site and users will expect and demand the same cus- tomer service on either appliance. Failure to give the customer that same service will result in a loss on mobile business over time in a free commerce world. Shopping bots One question that comes our way every now and then is whether or not shopping malls will become popular in mobile commerce as they had in ecommerce. My opinion is that this method of shopping will not gain in real popularity, mainly due to the education that retailers got using shopping sites during the dot-com boom in the late-’90s and early 2000s. Retailers learned during the growth of their online business that the real battle for customers was one with traditional strategies of brand- ing, well-designed and informative Web sites and easily navigated com- merce sites. Why spend money building some other company’s brand or lose valuable margin dollars that could be just as easily pock- eted? Certainly the next big play for commerce sites is through mobile commerce. These portals should be extensions of the Web site itself and not through some other portal or URL that may be unfa- miliar to the user. It would be easier to use their exist- ing Internet platform and IT capabilities to manage the mobile site just as they do with their base site. The bigger question becomes how on- line retailing addresses the needs and concerns of the mobile shopper. In the same way the shop bots or online shopping malls filled a need to the online con- sumer, there may be a slight rise in mobile shopping malls in the short term depending on how fast retailers develop mobile shop- ping sites that are more robust than just text. This is especially true when it comes to functionality and shopping. If retailers are slow to embrace the mobile world, then, a sharp wire- less carrier may develop an easy interface for shopability that makes their site more attractive or easier to use than the online retailer, there- fore giving rise to a short-term lift of shopping mall type sites on the mobile. But, just as with the ecommerce changes we saw in the past, retail- ers will eventually side-step this process for their own branding strat- egy and the ability to keep more of their own margin in their own pocket. Customers comfortable shopping behind retailer’s URL This has been accomplished through better security, better ecom- merce and better delivery of goods. My sense is that most customers want to dial in the retailers do- main and do their commerce there. If they need additional information, they are going to Google the topic and work backwards until they have found the information, prod- uct or pricing they need. Steve Timpson is chief operating officer of Siteminis, Marietta, GA. Reach him at steve@siteminis.com PAGE 4 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE
  7. 7. By Mike Beech A s Apple has demonstrated time and again, most recently with the iPhone 3G, the end-user experience makes a real difference to the ac- ceptance of any product or service. For mobile commerce, it will be essential to create a simple yet secure user experience in order to facilitate any widespread acceptance of the service. Without an easy to use, but secure experience, mobile commerce will re- main all talk and no action. Using a mobile wallet Many mobile phones have long had the capability to store “cash” within the phone itself, the so-called mobile wallet. In Finland, home of Nokia, mobile handset users have been able to buy Coke from vending machines for many years. Yet we haven’t seen this expand to many other services, nor have we seen it expand, to any great extent, on a worldwide basis. While the idea sounds easy to use, users have to “load” cash onto their phone. The actual purchase procedure can be a cumbersome and an unwieldy user experience. Alternative approaches Many wireless carriers around the world have experimented with both mo- bile wallets and other forms of payment, such as premium SMS. In Singapore, one of the carriers conducted extensive field trials, using four different mechanisms with a small user group in each part of the city. The trial included mobile wallets, premium SMS and links through to their mobile accounts. Their goal was to find the one approach that worked best. Their findings were that all of the approaches were too time-consuming and dif- ficult for end users. Not one technique passed the trial stage. Wave and pay A model gaining popularity is the simple “wave and pay” concept, using Near Field Communications (NFC). Here the phone still has a mobile wallet, but payment is made easier as you only need to “wave” your phone at the point of sale. While NFC only has a range of a few centimeters, some fear this payment method is so simple, you could walk down a street and unknowingly pay for everyone else’s purchases. While security is an issue in this approach, at least elements of simplicity are being proposed. Beyond retail payments Of course, so far we have only considered the use of the mobile phone as a payment instrument in a standard retail outlet. When using the phone as an alternative way of accessing online retailers, different problems arise. Most existing Internet sites do not work well on the majority of mobile phones. Put simply, the screen size and lack of a mouse and keyboard inter- face makes using most online sites difficult, to say the least. As covered by other articles in this guide, online sites need to be designed for the phone to be successful, which is in itself a challenge. Phones vary in their own capabilities and particularly screen size, from the iPhone or T-Mobile’s G1 (both geared for online access) to the more basic handsets with very limited functionality and small screens. Apple has shown that it can move a successful online site (iTunes) to the phone. However, not all Web site creators have the luxury of owning their own phone as well. Obviously, carriers are in a stronger position here and should be looking to encourage other site developers as well as building their own portals. Using your mobile phone account In considering the end-user experience, we should look at one of the key parts of a mobile phone – the already established payment method. End-users are familiar with paying a monthly bill (on contract) or topping up their phone with cash in advance (prepaid). Having mobile commerce activity tap into this existing payment infra- structure will help the usability and improve the perception of security. Prepaid and post-paid accounts both offer advantages to the end-user ex- perience for mobile commerce. With post-paid, I have a readymade “monthly bill.” With prepaid, I can set limits on my spending (by the amount I top-up) and can keep track of what I have left in real-time. In both cases, if a phone is lost or stolen, the carrier is able to block the phone and stop any unauthorized transactions being applied to the account. Also in both cases, I can have a full and detailed record of all my purchases. The carrier can provide this to me as a regular statement or as an online, self-service record that I can check at any time. And I have avoided the need to create yet another account or another way to load a payments instrument with cash. The ultimate experience? What end-user experience is the market looking for? It has to be simple and secure, easy to use but, if the worst happens, easy to block. So consider this: I take my purchases to the checkout and wave my phone at the register when the goods have been scanned through. My phone shows me a list of the goods, the amount of each, all the taxes and, of course, the total amount. If I am using a prepaid account for this, I would expect to see my starting balance at the top and my remaining balance at the bottom. I click “OK” and then maybe I am asked to confirm or even enter a PIN (perhaps based on the total amount of the transaction). At the end of the month, whether I prepaid or post-paid, I get my “mobile commerce” statement. All transactions are listed in detail, with totals for each transaction. Of course, this is available online to check at any time and is updated in real-time, so I always know where I am. And what if my purchase was online? The collection into my basket obvi- ously needs to be tailored, but the check-out and payment I want exactly the same way. Nice and simple. Mike Beech is vice president at Plano, TX-based Acision LLC. Reach him at mike.beech@acision.com MMoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee:: TThhee iimmppoorrttaannccee ooff tthhee eenndd--uusseerr eexxppeerriieennccee MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 5
  8. 8. By Jason Cianchette G enerally people think of mobile as the tiny Web. They believe that mobile devices have tiny screens, tiny banner ads and tiny audi- ences that generate tiny revenue. Mobile is far from tiny and may soon surpass the Internet in significance. Like all new mediums, a fresh ap- proach must be created to change the way we think about mobile. When a new medium is introduced, there tends to be a lot of un- certainty in how to best leverage the functionality of the developing platform. In the mid 1990s, much of Web commerce was made up of an electronic display of print cat- alog content, sometimes even in the form of a PDF. Companies did not know how to fully use the features that the Internet had to offer. In time, the true power of the Web was un- derstood and ecommerce sites began implement- ing more sophisticated functionality such as recommendations and user-generated ratings and reviews. Today, the new medium is the mobile phone. Mobile phones currently have small screens and slow download connections compared to PCs. This leads many marketers and site designers to create mobile experiences that are small, stripped down versions of their Web sites. Mobile, however, has much more to offer than people realize. A true paradigm shift is necessary. Some ways that this can be done is to develop new ideas that exploit the power and potential of the mobile platform. How could this work? One way is to create purchase opportunities at new times and places. For example, my brand affinity for Procter & Gamble-owned personal hygiene brand Gillette is highest each time my favorite team, the New England Patriots, plays at Gillette stadium. Mobile can provide a great opportunity to let fans like me buy new blades during a game by sending a text message in between plays. In addition, many of the Web’s advanced commerce features can be brought to physical re- tail stores using mobile. For instance, while shopping for a new printer at Staples, I could have reviews and rat- ings on the models available right on my mobile phone. Furthermore, Staples could also give me per- sonalized in-store recommendations based on my previous purchases with the company. Mobile also offers a fast channel to send targeted rewards. For example, companies such as hotel chain Sheraton can use mo- bile to enhance their loyalty marketing programs. While in New York, Sheraton could send me offers based on my current location and transaction history. Using my mobile device, I could redeem an offer to get tickets to a Broadway show with my Sheraton rewards points. As marketers begin embracing the unique capabilities of the mobile platform, we will start enjoying new and exciting commerce opportu- nities that go well beyond the tiny Web. Jason Cianchette is president of Boston-based Liquid Wireless. Reach him at jason@liquidwireless.com PAGE 6 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE MMoobbiillee iiss nnoott tthhee ttiinnyy WWeebb
  9. 9. By Alan Sultan M obile commerce certainly presents tremendous opportunities for retailers to engage customers in more meaningful trans- actions that are highly relevant to the customer, thus result- ing in increased sales. How does mobile enable this? Mobile can deliver spot relevance – the ability to deliver the right marketing content, to the right person, at the right time, in the right location. To provide such a precise level of communication, business intelligence is captured or forecasted covering three major dimensions to determine spot rele- vance including user data, business data and time-of-day. User data includes inputting the iden- tified interests (what they like) and activities (what they do) of the tar- get group as obtained from prior market research activities. The location can be determined using technology such as GPS. Business data such as organizational goals and historical transac- tions are also important to include. Finally, leveraging any major wireless communications technology such as WiFi, WiMAX, GSM or CDMA allows real-time decision- making as the precise time-of-day data is captured in order to optimize who is reached and how often. All of this information is entered into or captured by an intelligent preference engine which uses sophisticated statistical techniques and predictive algorithms to determine the optimal content or offer on an in- dividualized basis. Prospects, customers and mobile commerce organizations are key beneficiaries of spot relevance. Prospects and customers value highly that they receive only com- pelling offers or content of interest whenever they want and not the digital spam that is too prevalent with current ecommerce marketing. Mobile commerce organizations gain deep, measurable business analysis in real time to understand what compels prospects and current customers to purchase, plus how to engage customers in a meaningful, ongoing relationship. Spot relevance can be delivered working within private networks and with select carriers. So the time is now to start testing it as part of your mobile commerce plans. Alan Sultan is president of Washington-based Acuity Mobile. Reach him at asultan@acuitymobile.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 7 MMoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee:: LLeevveerraaggiinngg tthhee ttaarrggeetteedd iimmppuullssee ppuurrcchhaassee ooppppoorrttuunniittyy
  10. 10. By Michael Dulong I t seems like only yesterday that consumers were reticent to engage in ecommerce due to security concerns. That was until Amazon paved the way toward mass ecommerce nearly 13 years ago. A lot has happened since those early days. Mobile commerce, while still early in its life- cycle, appears to be moving much more quickly than ecommerce in terms of consumer adoption and industry acceptance. And when you really think about mobile commerce and its many forms (credit-card billing, carrier billing, PSMS, credit cards and mobile “wallets”) it makes sense that consumers are only now beginning to make mobile purchases. Mobile Web adoption is the required first step toward a scalable mobile com- merce model. According to a white paper recently released by Nielsen Co., “The United States is the global leader in mobile Internet adoption, with 40 million U.S. mobile subscribers (15.6 percent) actively using the mo- bile Internet.” The paper further addresses that “9.2 million United States mobile subscribers have used their phone to pay for goods or services.” Entering the age of “single-click” mobile commerce Before getting into the details of what “single click” mobile com- merce is all about, let’s consider how this is first handled with desktop computers, which is basically transacted through tracking cookies. Some phones have cookies turned on, some off, some carriers sup- port, some do not. In order to scale single-click mobile commerce, the technology leveraged will need to function across all handsets and networks whether the handset has cookies enabled or disabled. To solve this dilemma, companies need a technology that enables single-click mobile commerce across all phones and all networks with- out requiring users to enter a user name or PIN code. The technology involved would essentially license the handset for “access.” “Access” in a digital sense could be to a download URL or, in a physical instance this could involve order fulfillment and shipping. Hey, wait a minute! You might think this sounds a lot like ecom- merce. And in fact you’d be right. The mobile Web is the Internet being accessed by a phone and eventually we will all own a larger screen, Web-enabled smartphone, which will be our preferred way of accessing the Internet. The truth of the matter is the mobile consumer is already making purchases and the mobile indus- try will need to keep pace with this new behavior. The single-click purchase experience is a glimpse of the future. Someday, we will all have a smartphone and we won’t think twice about whipping out our credit card to make the same types of purchases we take for granted on the Internet. At first it will be digital goods, then impulse purchases and finally major purchases of physical goods, which is something that everyone can get excited about. Without question, the future is bright for mobile commerce and a single-click technology platform is the one solution to drive benefits to all the stakeholders. Consumers will enjoy the added convenience of mobile shopping. Carriers can optimize the mobile purchase experience and enjoy sig- nificantly increased data revenues, and merchants can extend their shopping experiences to mobile. Beyond that, publishers and ad networks can run commerce-en- abled mobile ad campaigns and deliver improved return on investment. With all of these benefits and consumer adoption increasing quickly, the industry is entering a period of truly explosive growth. Understand this is just the beginning of a natural evolution of the digital medium from the fixed desktop to the mobile phone. Consumers will ultimately lead the charge in this effort and help to usher in a new standard for mobile commerce exchange. Michael Dulong is senior vice president of business development at Billing Revolution, Seattle. Reach him at mike@billingrevolution.com PAGE 8 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE FFrroomm tthhee ddeesskkttoopp ttoo mmoobbiillee pphhoonnee:: AAddvvaanncciinngg mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee aa ssiinnggllee--cclliicckk aatt aa ttiimmee
  11. 11. By Stephen Burke Mobile users don’t buy what they can’t find. Content providers can’t survive if they have to spend more of their marketing budgets on costly, imprecise mass media and Web promotions or hit and miss mobile pay-per-impression (PPI) campaigns in order to cap- ture user interest in the ever-widening mobile Web. This is especially true as the trend from on-portal content sales to off-portal accelerates in the United States and as new mobile commerce initiatives get under way. In the early days of the mobile Web, carriers — rightly — sought to control content access within walled gardens to ensure reliability and a common user experience. Content providers lined up to get “on deck,” creating pileups in op- erator waiting rooms. With recent advances in network capacity, data pricing, devices, applications and standards, the U.S. is poised to rapidly follow the trends set in Japan and in Britain. In these countries the ratio of on- and off-portal content discovery has flipped in the past two years and off-portal sites now dominate traffic. Even more dramatic in Japan is the growth of mobile commerce, which overtook mobile content sales in 2007 and will generate nearly $6 billion in revenue this year versus $3 billion in mobile content revenues. How will U.S. content and ecommerce providers profit? By grab- bing space in the emerging “mobile malls” that are being deployed by carriers and portals. Mobile malls that are building clear pathways — on the phone top and the WAP portal – to information search powered by Web giants such as Google and Yahoo, as well as to high-value search merchan- dising services. Search merchandising services are services that leverage new tech- nical advances such as federated search and new content promotion programs that reach users at the moment of highest interest in a transaction. Federated search solutions create direct connections to any content sources (on- and off- portal) in real-time, and in any number of verti- cal content channels (music, video, games and shopping). Queries are brokered out to relevant sources, and actionable content items—not endless links—are presented to the user in two to three clicks, ranked and sorted in terms of relevance and value. Federated search combined with new performance based pay-per- click (PPC) content promotion programs to reach users directly at the instant they want to buy cool stuff with their phone. This eliminates costly and complex keyword bidding and campaign management and ensures that if the content provider’s database has a piece of content relevant to the query it will be presented to users who are primed to buy. Shorter click distance + relevant content items (not links) = higher click throughs, conversions and return on investment. With federated search and PPC content promotion at their disposal, content providers can manage search engine optimization within their own databases, leverage limited marketing budgets directly against users at the moment of highest interest in a transaction, and maintain a profitable position in high-traffic mobile malls. Stephen Burke is the Tokyo-based senior vice president of marketing for MCN Inc., a mobile search platform provider. Reach him at stephen.burke@mcn-inc.com PAGE 10 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE HHooww ccoonntteenntt pprroovviiddeerrss ccaann pprrooffiitt ffrroomm mmoobbiillee sseeaarrcchh,, oonn-- aanndd ooffff--ddeecckk
  12. 12. By Marc Peter T here is still a marked difference be- tween mobile usage in Japan and Europe, where in the Far East, i-mode services (e.g. localized restaurant bookings) are ubiquitous, but not as widely used in Europe. I-mode is a mobile Internet service that is popular in Japan. Unlike WAP, i-mode covers more In- ternet standards, like Web access, email and the network that delivers the data. I-mode users have access to various services such as email, sports results, weather forecasts, games, financial services and ticket booking. Content is provided by specialized services, typically from the mo- bile carrier, which allows them to have tighter control over billing. The iPhone has changed user perception of browsing the Internet via mobile, with the overarching question: Why should there be a dif- ference between PC Web and mobile Web? When site owners first started to investigate the possibility of mo- bile sites, the ensuing and internal debate with developers was to go down the WAP path or optimize a specific Cascading Style Sheet (CSS) but use the HTML protocol. Mobile is becoming a standard alternative CSS that develops in much the same way as catering for different accessible site versions. Thus, WAP has been somewhat forsaken and the focus has shifted to learning design principles for small screens and narrowband Web access. Most Web-enabled phones have native browsers, therefore existing CSS and HTML displays – supported where relevant by the site’s con- tent management system (CMS). For every mobile site, a thorough analysis is completed on what users need – information, commerce, interaction – and a typical set of users identified, leading to the lowest common denominator requirements. These are invariably Windows Mobile (Internet Explorer) on a mo- bile phone screen – and the success or failure of a mobile site will be determined by the graphical user interface (GUI) and ability of the user to navigate content. A mobile site is effectively a Web site that is specifically designed to display on as small a screen as possible – a second skin – then de- tect the user agent and serve up the relevant CSS design dependent on whether a user is accessing the site from a mobile device, PDA or PC Web browser. It is important to display mobile sites as single-column pages. Mo- bile screens are simply too small for multiple-column displays and look different on various devices. Remove any elements that are not supported by the native Web browser. For example, Flash. All images should be reduced in size as much as possible, in consideration of both screen size and band- width availability. The most complex part of developing a mobile site is redefining the location and structure of navigation. On large and multilingual sites, the navigation can fill an entire screen. Breadcrumbs and “back” and “Quick Links” below page content are invaluable to the user, and facilitate the separation of navigation from content. A search function is vital on large sites As with all developments, test for optimum display and function- ality on relevant operating systems (Mac OSX+ and Windows 2000, XP and Vista) and Web browsers (Internet Explorer 6+, Firefox 2.5+, Safari 2+), as well as mobile devices. Physically test on various PDAs, smartphones and Web-enabled mobile phones to ensure any anomalies that the PC simulators have are eliminated. The one unresolved issue is for multiple language character set dis- play on the same mobile/PDA interface: a device bought in China will not natively display English or Cyrillic character sets (Arabic, Russ- ian, Greek) and vice versa. The user must install the relevant character sets. It’s laborious, but solvable. Clients should be aware of the issue. Marc Peter is creative director at Web design and development company on-Idle, London. Reach him at marc.peter@on-idle.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 11 HHooww ttoo ooppttiimmiizzee yyoouurr WWeebb ssiittee ffoorr mmoobbiillee
  13. 13. By Brad Bostic O n-the-go mobile users want quick rel- evant answers and solutions to their immediate needs. Due to the inherent limitations of Web-en- abled mobile devices – small screens, slower connectivity and browser downloading capa- bilities – mobile marketers have to make the most of their limited interaction with mobile consumers. These on-the-go mobile users aren’t, in most cases, interested in surfing the Web – they’ve got a specific need and turn to their Web-enabled mobile devices to find a quick answer. So, how do mobile marketers reach these consumers at their point of need? There are numerous mobile search vendors in the marketplace today offering mobile users Internet search capabilities. But the problem is, typical mobile infor- mation services only provide algorithmic search results, which translates to links to “possible” answers. But now, mobile marketers have the op- portunity to capitalize on the game-changing technology that is revo- lutionizing mobile marketing – human assisted mobile answers. With mobile answers, consumers can quickly find spe- cific answers to specific queries and mobile mar- keters can reach them at their point of need. Say you’re visiting downtown Philadelphia and in dire need of a Mocha Venti Latte, only you have no idea where the nearest coffee house is. You call 411 or use mobile search and they lo- cate 15 outlets in downtown Philly. Or, imagine this – you call or text your question on your mobile phone and a friendly “guide” not only tells you the exact location of the closest cof- fee house, but also provides you with a dis- count code to use at that coffee house. Want to know where and when a certain feature film is playing? Using mobile an- swers, a human guide provides the answer and at the same time asks you if you’d like to pur- chase tickets. Hmmm…you’ve heard a song on the radio, but you didn’t catch the song title…with mobile answers you can simply provide the guide with a few of the lyrics. Within minutes, the guide gives you the song title and artist and asks you if you’d like to purchase the CD or download an MP3 version. This is smart mobile marketing — reach- ing consumers at their point of need in a tar- geted, relevant way — versus the intrusive, shotgun approach of non-solicited advertising. Through the magic of mobile answers, mobile marketers are able to view behavioral patterns, intent to buy, promotion responsive- ness, brand affinity and other key metrics. Tech-savvy mobile users – espe- cially the 18-24-year-old crowd – have widely em- braced mobile technology, so it’s a natural fit for mobile mar- keters to harness the power of mobile answers to reach them in a method with which they are most comfortable. What’s more, today’s mobile devices are highly personal, so much so that they can be equated to a diary or to a personal “black book.” For marketers, this presents an extraordinary op- portunity to carry on an intimate dialogue through highly targeted marketing to a massive group of consumers. Brad Bostic is president and cofounder of ChaCha Search Inc., Carmel, IN. Reach him at brad.bostic@chacha.com PAGE 12 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE RReeaacchhiinngg ccoonnssuummeerrssaatt ppooiinntt ooff nneeeedd kkeeyy ttoo mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee IINNTTEERRMMEEDDIIAATTEE
  14. 14. By Kim Ann King It’s no longer a question – con- sumers are increasingly using their mobile devices to access the Web. Organizations are quickly learn- ing that mobile commerce comes with unique challenges around screen size, lack of navigation and bandwidth latency. One way to maximize your return on investment around mobile marketing initiatives is to create savvy mobile landing pages that help increase conversion rates. Seven best practices When building mobile landing pages, there are seven best practices to follow. While there is plenty of advice on this, this list condenses the key takeaways: 1) Write a clear, concise and compelling headline and offer copy that speaks to your audience’s problem. For example: “Hungry? Try our new $1.99 chicken fajitas!” 2) Include an image of the offer for visual appeal. 3) Create minimal navigation to minimize distraction and potential opt-out. 4) Keep the look and feel of your primary Web site so consumers will immediately recognize your brand. 5) Don’t forget a compelling call to action that should tie in to the offer. For example, coupons for the scrumptious chicken fajita offer above could have a call-to-action such as “Redeem now!” 6) Minimize data collection – it’s hard to fill out forms on a mobile device. 7) But if you do include data collection, also include a privacy statement to help establish trust. Questions to ask when designing your mobile landing page When thinking about the seven best practices above, you will want to ask yourself the following questions: 1) Is the headline/copy/imagery compelling? 2) Are we selling the offer (recommended) or the company/product (not recommended). In other words, does the offer focus on audience pain or is it self- serving? 3) Is the new mobile landing page taking advantage of our keywords and ad groups? 4) Is there a humongous form to fill out? Can we streamline that or get rid of it? 5) If we must include a form, are the questions on it relevant to the buying cycle? For example, if you are sending a mobile commerce offer to a consumer who hasn’t even heard of you or doesn’t have the problem you are trying to solve, it won’t be very effective. 6) Did we include a relevant, visually appealing image 7) Is the copy scannable? Are there bullets or call-outs, much like this article? 8) Do we need a privacy statement? What’s next? OK, you have built your mobile landing page, your mobile com- merce offer is out there and consumers are taking advantage of it. Now what do you do? Optimize! Now is not the time to rest on your laurels. You will want to test, measure and revise continuously to make sure you are maximizing each and every campaign. Consider a non-intrusive mobile multivariate testing solution in order to test and track factors such as copy/text, offers and images/graphics. Good luck! Kim Ann King is chief marketing officer at SiteSpect, Boston. Reach her at kking@sitespect.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 13 HHooww ttoo aacchhiieevvee mmoobbiillee mmaarrkkeettiinngg ssuucccceessss wwiitthh ooppttiimmiizzeedd llaannddiinngg ppaaggeess TTRRYY RR NNUU CCHHIICCKK’’NN FFAAJJIITTAASS RREEDDEEEEMM NNOOWW 44 5500¢¢ OOFFFF TTHHEE CCLLUUCCKK SSTTOOPP
  15. 15. By Steven Gray A s consumers continue to feel the pinch from today’s economic pressures, an increasing amount of American shoppers are turning to coupons as an effective cost-cutting measure. In fact, recent reports and studies show that for the first time in more than a decade coupon usage is on the rise. For marketers who are taking advantage of the coupon trend, mobile coupons are a natural extension of their mail, print and point-of-purchase coupon pieces, among other communications. “Going mobile” helps advertisers reinforce messages with con- sumers who are becoming increasingly dependent on their mobile phones, especially the highly coveted 18-34 age demographic. In a recent ABI Research study, 38 percent of consumers indicated that mobile incentives would increase their response, while 32 percent of those polled indicated that incentives probably would increase their response. In the same study, 63 percent of respondents selected coupons to local retailers as their marketing incentive and message of choice. More than half of those polled, 52 percent, selected discounts at a store as their second choice of incentive. Among the tech-savvy 18-34 age demographic, the study found that 70 percent of mobile coupon redemptions were from members of this targeted group. The rise in publishing of coupons on the Web and their increase in use are also key indicators that consumers and businesses alike are ready for mobile couponing. The number of people turning to the Web for coupons has soared to 38.6 million in 2008, an increase of 13 million people from 2005. With this type of momentum, there is little doubt that Web-enabled and mobile text digital coupons are here to stay and will provide mo- bile publishers a promising source of revenue in the years ahead. Even more direct than traditional mail or online pieces, mobile coupons present advertisers the chance to draw-in consumers who are progressively more comfortable using their mobile phones. Whether “pushed” out to consumers through a text message or made available on mobile phones through the Web, mobile coupons provide advertisers new consumer touch points, including at the point of purchase. Similar to other offers, mobile couponing is a measurable market- ing tactic with a direct call to action. Yet, the convenience and ease of use of mobile coupons distinguish them as a perfect alternative media for reaching different audiences. Plus, mobile coupons fulfill the all-important relevancy and timely factors that marketers crave. They are relevant because those using them have opted-in to re- ceive the offer. Also, they are timely for both consumers and advertisers, made available when consumers are ready to buy, and brought to market in an instant as advertisers seek to increase sales with new products and promotions. Mobile coupons are a lower-cost complement to other mediums such as one-to-one direct mail, ranging from eight cents to 30 cents per message, depending on the size of the mobile distribution. Moreover, the incremental benefit of mobile coupons on marketing campaigns can have a major impact on revenues and profits. Although relatively still new, direct marketers are clinging to the technology as the next “big thing” for coupons. In general, mobile coupons are a welcome comple- ment to the efforts many advertisers have underway with their call-to-action messages offering discounts and provide a practical way of connecting with customers wherever they might be geographically. Steven Gray is chief operating officer of Garden Grove, CA-based Money Mailer. Reach him at sgray@moneymailer.com PAGE 14 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE AAmmeerriiccaann sshhooppppeerrss ttuurrnn ttoo ccoouuppoonnss dduurriinngg eeccoonnoommiicc sslloowwddoowwnn
  16. 16. By Jon Jackson A s the number of mobile phones per capita approaches 100 percent or higher in some parts of the world, there is no doubt that mobile phones have become an indispensable part of a consumer’s daily life. Increasingly, innovative ways are being created to help consumers conduct commerce using their mobile devices, from paying tolls to purchasing vending machine products to replacing charge cards when shopping for groceries. These uses all require additional hard- ware and functionality to be built in to the handset. This means it will take time to reach the masses. The industry needs a way to effectively communicate with the masses and make it easy for consumers to conduct mobile commerce now. Most consumers have never purchased anything on their phones What is needed is a solution that provides visibility to products and services on the phone and in the physical world – an idle screen-based mo- bile advertising solution offers just that opportunity. When implemented with the support of service providers, idle screen- based delivery of graphically rich and interactive marketing messages can help brands and marketers establish a dialog with consumers that don’t subscribe to or use data services. Simplicity and ease of use are paramount By driving discovery and visibility of products and services at the idle screen level, with calls to action that are easy to respond to with the press of a key, even a lay person can quickly start conducting commerce using their mobile phone. Particularly compelling are services and products that can be consumed on the mobile phone itself, such as ringtones, wallpapers and mobile games. By providing offers or information about such mobile content through idle-screen messaging, where one click provides a subscriber with more information and an opportunity to download or purchase the product. This makes a positive experience for the consumer and delivers com- pelling results for the advertiser. Consumers are generally inseparable from their mobile phones By delivering coupons or offers on their mobile phones when they are out and about, the likelihood that a marketer can influence consumer be- havior and help drive them into a retail location is vastly increased. Consumers like to save, whether it is saving money when ordering pizza or getting a discount on an oil change for their car or buying flowers for a loved one. As a recent example of successful engagement through idle screen- based ad delivery, Jiffy Lube ran a campaign which offered $10 off a Jiffy Lube Signature Service in select markets. Over the four week duration of this campaign using the Cricket Perks program, the click-through rate averaged at 22.8 percent and unique sub- scriber engagement was 56.3 percent. According to Jiffy Lube representative Janice Jack, “Cricket Perks has given us the ability to make an instant connection with consumers while they are mobile and more likely to respond to an offer by sim- ply bringing in their mobile phone to one of our locations. We like the simplicity of this approach – no coupons to clip.” As illustrated by the success achieved by this and numerous other similar cam- paigns, the idle-screen engagement-based solution provides the necessary platform that can enable mass adoption and growth for mobile commerce. Jon Jackson is CEO of McLean, VA-based Mobile Posse. Reach him at jon@mobileposse.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 15 TThhee rroollee ooff iiddllee ssccrreeeenn iinn ddrriivviinngg mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee
  17. 17. By Giselle Abramovich W hen a department store giant such as Sears is using mobile to complement its existing multichannel strategy, the mo- bile commerce channel can be taken a bit more seriously. Sears was seeing an increasing amount of mobile traffic on http://www.sears.com, but the experience was not the greatest. This is when the retail giant came to Usablenet to fix the problem. “With increasing proliferation of robust mobile devices such as the iPhone, BlackBerry, G1 et cetera, we believe users will start using their phones for a lot more data-centric activities such as online browsing and shopping,” said Ravi Acharya, director of Sears’ online business unit. “We are starting to observe early trends where certain users rely on their mobile device more than their PCs and laptops when traveling,” he said. “Coupling industry trends with our core multichannel strengths, we believe that providing our customers with valuable tools on their mobile devices will encourage richer and relevant interaction.” Sears Holdings Corp. is the nation's fourth largest retailer with more than $50 billion in annual revenues and approximately 3,800 full-line and specialty retail stores in the United States and Canada. Key proprietary brands include Kenmore, Craftsman and DieHard, and a broad apparel offering including such well-known labels as Lands' End, Jaclyn Smith and Joe Boxer. Sears2go, the mobile commerce site, targets people on the go. Sears’ new mobile presence is meant to make it easier to cut out the holiday shopping hassles and shop from the convenience of a mobile phone. More of Sears’ customers are relying on their mobile device as their primary means of email and Web usage. They are the retailer’s target customers. Sears2go showcases products in the following categories: apparel, electronics and computers, fitness and sports, jewelry, tools, toys and games. Users can buy these items right on the site. “Sears is a phenomenal example of mobile commerce,” said Nick Taylor, president of Usablenet, New York. “Sears has leveraged a very powerful Web site and allowed customers to seamlessly and successfully access Sears.com from any mobile phone for full purchasing. “A good example is the idea of a customer being able to order some- thing for delivery or for pick-up in a store and an SMS is sent letting the customer know the product is ready for pick-up,” he said. “They've picked functionality that's very valuable on their site and el- egantly extended to the mobile phone where this is such a relevant mobile idea.” The usage pattern from people on the go is best served by providing a simple, fast experience that enables them to find and buy products with minimal distractions. The way people shop on their phone is much more surgical than on the Web, people want to get in, transact and get out. There will also be additional ways to get people excited about spe- cific products and deals that will land them closer to the products they are looking for, thus reducing the number of clicks they would need to go through on a mobile device. The mobile commerce site isn’t Sears’ first foray into mobile. In the past, the company has tested 2D barcode scans from in-store to retrieve product reviews and other information. SSeeaarrss wwiinnss wwiitthh mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee FFEEAATTUURREE PAGE 16 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE
  18. 18. Sears was also part of a large integrated marketing campaign this summer to support the launch of the Incredible Hulk movie. This was essentially a three-week text-to-win contest in partnership with Kmart, Universal Studios and Marvel comics that had very positive feedback. For over a year now, Sears has had SMS deals and alerts that inform customers when their products purchased online are available for in- store pickup, or a weekly deal is promoted. Sears also has alerts at certain Sears Auto centers to let customers know when their cars are ready for pickup after servicing. “Why wouldn't a company with a Web site allow its customers to buy products and services however they'd like?” Mr. Taylor said. “Espe- cially in an economy like today's. “In one month, Sears has already found success via Sears Mobile in every single state in the country, which is staggering,” he said. “It shows that people everywhere, in every state and demographic are ready for mobile commerce.” Research shows that millions of Americans are going to Web sites from mobile phones, often to shop or buy products and services. The success of the iPhone and the entire corresponding buzz has made mobile Web and mobile commerce even more of an expecta- tion for people everywhere. Mobile commerce cut its teeth in the travel sector (examples: Ameri- can Airlines, Starwood and Amtrak) over the last couple years, but now it’s a proven channel for commerce across all sectors including retail. Increasingly, mobile commerce will be a basic expectation. This trajectory will get steeper very quickly. Consumers are mobile, now more than ever before, and it’s becoming the first screen for absolutely everything people do. There is a new, sophisticated device coming out every single day to make mobile commerce even easier, more comprehensive and more sophisticated. Companies will have to support their mobile customers and provide mobile commerce or face the possibility of losing customers who will buy something more easily and quickly elsewhere – from their phone. There is also this idea of consumers beginning to settle on the mobile sites that they know they can successfully navigate and buy from. Companies will prefer to be one of these sites, rather than a site branded as non-mobile. “We believe the mobile channel will support our multichannel strategy very effectively,” Mr. Acharya said. “As mobile devices evolve into the most personalized, first-screen point of contact, this channel will be highly relevant in providing our customers with an easy way of interacting with Sears. “Mobile can also be a natural bridge across our various channels – e.g. stores, online and print – to provide customers with a seamless, integrated experience,” he said. What’s Sears’ mobile strategy going forward? “We are constantly exploring customer mobile usage patterns in alignment with technology trends and testing various concepts and applications that offer value,” Mr. Acharya said. “These could trans- late into richer and more integrated user experiences for our cus- tomers in various areas around commerce and support.” MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 17
  19. 19. By Michael Foschetti A keen interest exists in financial institutions across the country to develop innovative new ways of engaging current and po- tential customers with mobile to drive sales and improve account servicing. Many banks have taken the most logical first step into mobile: De- ploying mobile banking servicing platforms, whether through browser, SMS, downloadable applications, or a combination of one or more of these. These institutions are in a race to deploy and continue adding to these platforms, as well as to encourage frequent customer usage. But the mobile community is still struggling with how to extend mobile banking and where it exists in the ecosystem. Advanced applications and technologies hold great promise, but are still in the development and testing stages. Despite slower than expected adoption, the marketplace is primed for mobile banking to take off. Consumers have become increas- ingly receptive. Vendors and technology providers have improved their so- lutions and platforms. Lastly, devices and net- works are continually evolving to a higher level of sophistication and speed. Mobile banking provides a service that banks have not been able to offer previously – quicker, more efficient access to account information – and adds a strategic point of differentiation to those institutions that do offer it. It also helps banks extend their reach to new customer segments that are typically more mobile-savvy, such as younger demographics and U.S. Hispanics. Audiences such as these look for different service offerings than the older, Anglo demographic and mobile banking is becoming almost a requirement for them. This second stage of mobile banking will see more alerts and noti- fications, funds-transfer services and location finders, as well as more bill-pay functions and two-way, actionable alerts. Currently, Visa is testing a notification system where customers re- ceive a text message as soon as charges are made anywhere in the world. The message can show the date, time, dollar amount, merchant name, location and clickable link for telephone support. Banks have the option to customize the message with the wording, the information that is included and whether a fee is charged for the service or not. Long-term, the desire is to make those messages two-way, allow- ing customers to act on something in the message or respond if the charge was not made by them. The landscape for mobile banking is going to continue to change and evolve from all sides over the next few years. Banks and wireless carriers are starting to collaborate, working with handset manufacturers to include applications on devices before acti- vation by subscribers. Platforms and user interfaces will continue to be improved as banks aim for a better balance of simplicity and security. Vendors and technology providers will be consolidated as platforms become more consistent across banks and carriers. Consumers will continue to become more comfortable and recep- tive to mobile banking, realizing how much more efficient it is. They will begin to look for increased service offerings and better user experiences from their financial institutions, and mobile banking’s place in the ecosystem will no longer be so questionable. Michael Foschetti is managing director at Mobisix, Charlotte, NC. Reach him at mfoschetti@mobisix.com PAGE 18 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE MMoobbiillee bbaannkkiinngg’’ss ppllaaccee iinn tthhee eeccoossyysstteemm
  20. 20. By Gerry Samuels W ith more than 500 million mobile In- ternet users worldwide, and this fig- ure expected to triple by 2013, the mobile Web is growing at a phenomenal rate. Whilst travel suppliers need to keep pace with new developments, they also need to ensure they match the provision of services to customer acceptance of this relatively new channel. Mobile Web sites can offer the full functionality of the traditional Web plus additional mobile-specific features. However, what customers want to ac- cess on a mobile is different to what they want to access on a PC. When travel suppliers and inter- mediaries embrace this they find mo- bile to be an ideal means to deliver certain services that fit the context and provide a layer of differentia- tion over their competitors. For example, combining online and mobile services means a cus- tomer can book on the Web then push the booking to their mobile device. Hotel guests can then re- trieve their booking on mobile and see directions and maps to help them find their hotel. They can also amend bookings on-the-go should their plans change. Airline customers can check flight status, pur- chase additional services, select their on-board seat from graphical seat maps and even check-in. From the mobile travel services MTT has already developed for travel clients, we are already see- ing up to 10 percent of the number of unique users on the regular Web site ac- cessing the site on mobile. In the United States, large carriers have over 100,000 unique ac- cesses per month, a trend which is growing by up to 20 percent per month. Geographic location and differing costs to access the mobile Inter- net will of course affect to what extent this medium is used. In markets where there is a low cost to access the mobile Internet, for example, Britain (one pound per mobile screen accessed), there is high mobile Internet access of up to 30 percent of mobile phone sub- scribers. In other markets, where access costs can be three to four times that cost, access is lower. Similarly, in some developing mar- kets such as India and China, where mobile Internet is the Internet for many people, we are seeing the development of mobile commerce, i.e. people making reservations on mobiles, perhaps in ad- vance of other parts of the world. Whilst mobile services are currently being used mainly as a positive cus- tomer innovation, they also offer travel suppliers the potential to reduce costs – for example, where a traveler can self- modify a booking rather than having to contact a call center, and also have the po- tential to deliver incremental ancillary revenues. Looking ahead, as consumers’ confi- dence and familiarity with mobile Internet grows and as mobile data charges increas- ingly become bundled as part of monthly tar- iffs, mobile commerce is likely to expand. How- ever, travel operators’ focus right now should be on enhanc- ing their cus- tomers’ experience whilst on the go rather than simply developing a full functionality mo- bile version of their PC Web site. Gerry Samuels is the founder and executive di- rector of Mobile Travel Tech- nologies Ltd., Dublin, Ireland. Reach him at gerry@mttnow.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 19 CCuussttoommeerr sseerrvviiccee lleeaaddss tthhee wwaayy iinn mmoobbiillee ttrraavveell WWeebb aaddooppttiioonn
  21. 21. W ith 3.4 billion subscribers worldwide and service spanning 90 percent of the globe, mobile phones are the most quickly adopted device in world history. In fact, mobile phones have leapfrogged traditional telecommunica- tion networks to flourish in rural areas where landline penetration has long been stagnant at 5-10 percent. Mobile technology’s increasing ubiquity presents an unprecedented opportunity to deliver marketing messages and products in untapped markets where television, bricks-and-mortar institutions and even postal mail services have found it difficult to find a foothold. Mobile networks in underserved markets provide marketers in all in- dustries with two main channels for interacting with consumers. The first is, of course, the handset itself. Mobile banking and mobile payment networks have already demon- strated the tremendous potential for engaging underserved consumers via SMS technology, putting financial services within reach of the world’s 2 billion un-banked and under-banked individuals. In Kenya alone, Safaricom’s M-Pesa mobile payments service has facilitated $145 million in transactions among 1.6 million consumers. The second channel, which remains relatively unexplored by mar- keters, is the complex web of mobile distribution points that have been integral in driving mobile phones’ rapid adoption. These distribution points emerge organically, helmed by local entre- preneurs offering mobile solutions that best meet their neighbor’s usage habits. For example, Safaricom relies on di- rect sales agents who circulate in neigh- borhoods and villages selling top-ups for airtime or servicing mobile payments. Similarly, Grameenphone operates the national Village Phone program in rural India and Bangladesh, in which villagers essentially become wireless carriers by renting minutes to neighbors. Such agent networks are an ideal marketing and distribution platform for marketers of all industries, as they reach underserved consumers where they live and work, and in- volve highly personal transactions with agents they’ve grown to know and trust. Thinking of mobile agents and carriers as a roving point-of-sale net- work, companies can deploy advertising campaigns utilizing agents as brand ambassadors. Their frequent interaction with hard-to-reach consumers makes them extremely effective local partners for distributing advertisements, edu- cating consumers about products or displaying your brand. Coupon and sampling campaigns are another potential use of mobile distribution points. Consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies, for example, could arm these agents with traditional print or SMS coupons and even product samples. To incorporate cross-promotion, the CPG company and mobile car- rier – or the agent on their own – could offer free minutes for every prod- uct sold as a result of these coupons. Another angle to take toward this opportunity involves the engage- ment of mobile distribution agents as a sales force and delivery channel for your products and services. Enlisting these agents to sell insurance, to act as a local reseller for small products such as toothpaste, to distribute catalogs and take orders, or to become a "shipping center" for express mail creates a mutually ben- eficial business relationship. The end customer can use his mobile or cash to complete such transactions. In this relationship, your company serves the long tail, entering or achieving greater efficiencies within underserved markets, and local en- trepreneurs can in turn grow their businesses and increase loyalty by pro- viding mobile customers with added value. With such trusted partnerships in place, your product may enjoy adoption as rapid as that of mobile technology itself. Moneet Singh is the president and chief operating officer of Austin, TX- based MPower Mobile. Email him at moneet.singh@mpowerlabs.com PAGE 20 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE BBeeyyoonndd tthhee hhaannddsseett:: LLeevveerraaggiinngg mmoobbiillee ddiissttrriibbuuttiioonn ppooiinnttss ttoo rreeaacchh uunnddeerrsseerrvveedd mmaarrkkeettss AADDVVAANNCCEEDD By Moneet Singh
  22. 22. By Chuck Drake O nline commerce sent con- sumers and businesses into a frenzy of purchasing in a new, more convenient way. Initially named ecommerce, it changed our lives overnight and soon everything received the online moniker including online marketing, on- line sales, purchasing and payments. Even Congress got into the act with hearings about the potential tax revenues that might be reaped, propelling lobbyists into high gear. Now, rocking the world again, mobile commerce is replacing the PC with the mobile phone and replacing email with text messaging. Consumers who once went gaga because they could accomplish their bill paying online or receive email receipts for Christmas goods can now do even more, via simple text messaging, all while they wait in line or stop for coffee. Today, the mobile commerce landscape is rapidly changing as the masses text constantly (let’s face it, “text” is already a verb). The early adopters depend on mobile banking and transaction alerts via SMS. Those on the bleeding edge make payments and money trans- fers, reload prepaid cards and gain purchase rewards – all via SMS. Two concurrent developments in mobile technology made this possible. First, everyone owns a mobile phone. Even in countries where landlines never made it into the home and computers were never plugged in, people depend on their mobile phone. There are 1.3 billion Internet users globally and 3.4 billion mobile phone subscribers. In some countries, mobile phone penetration has reached 140 percent, which works out to be 1.5 mobile phones per person. Second, all mobile phones come equipped with SMS. Text messaging has slowly crept into the practices of all demographics so that now, everyone from middle school stu- dents needing a ride home to grandparents wishing a friend well text away everyday. Because of this massive proliferation across the globe and across demographics, SMS has reached and will continue to reach more people than perhaps any other communications channel available on any medium. In the mid-twentieth century, credit cards revolutionized commerce by putting real purchasing power in consumers’ wallets without needing to haul around a bucket of cash. Imagine not needing a wallet at all to wield such power. SMS can help turn mobile phones into mobile wallets without needing to dig the plastic out of its slot. Following the pace of ecommerce, mobile commerce is only beginning to experience widespread deployment. The masses will soon be performing all transactions dis- cussed in this article. Soon, early adopters will receive ac- tionable alerts for mobile receipts and rewards via SMS for Near Field Communications transactions. Before long, those people on the leading edge will se- cure on the spot credit to make point-of-sale purchases and eliminate the need for debit cards, enabling mobile pur- chases via SMS on-the-spot. The numbers suggest that mobile phones will indeed be- come the “wallet” of choice as big brands, smart technology vendors, banks, retailers and consumers continue to make smart decisions. According to Juniper Research, mobile payments and mobile money transfers will generate transactions worth $600 billion by 2013. That is a number worth taking to the bank. Chuck Drake is executive vice president of marketing at Clickatell, San Francisco. Reach him at chuck.drake@clickatell.com MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 21 AAnn eevvoolluuttiioonn rreevvoolluuttiioonn:: SSMMSS ttrraannssffoorrmmss mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee
  23. 23. By Ray Anderson T he scenario has become all too familiar among content providers: Company A has a presence on a major carrier’s por- tal but its content sits alongside its competitors. How can Company A stand out from the crowd and capture new business? The answer is new, yet has a familiar feel. Using the mobile Web as a platform for a direct-to-consumer site not only can help you attract new customers, it also provides consumers with the same “Web-like” user experience as on-portal. By placing banner ads on the portal, businesses can drive traffic to the off-portal site where they have complete control over how their content is marketed to the consumer. Here are just some of the advantages of having an off-portal presence: • Marketing programs such as banner ads or search marketing can drive traffic to the site and the success of these campaigns can be tracked, making it easy to see immediately which promotions yielded the highest rates of return. • A direct-to-consumer (D2C) mobile Web site works across all ge- ographic locations, but can be localized for specific markets so the con- tent is in the right language, is relevant and appealing for a particular country. • The point of payment and download on the mobile Web can be tightly coupled into one seamless WAP flow, leading to fewer support problems with refund levels as low as 0.1 percent of all downloads. Both subscriptions and pay-per-download payment methods can be supported. World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), a global sports entertain- ment brand with millions of fans around the world, launched an off- portal mobile site of original made-for-mobile content to complement its television and consumer product offerings. WWE turned to the mobile Web, so that fans anywhere in the world, on any network, could access and pay for content on their mobile phone. Within 4 months of launching the service, WWE reached con- sumers from more than 40 countries purchasing an array of content through more than 110 carriers around the world. WWE fans said they were drawn to the WAP site because it provides a mini-Web experience. An example of a mobile company that is reaping the benefits of di- rect-to-consumer is Dada Entertainment. New York-based Dada, a joint venture between Dada, USA and Sony BMG, was the first company to offer both ringtones and DRM-free full-length MP3s for mobile and PC paid directly via the mobile phone. Dada Entertainment cites the ability to offer a seamless payment experience, which in turn increases consumer satisfaction and decreases billing errors, as big positives for direct-to-consumer. “A mobile Web business allows us to work di- rectly with our consumers,” said Max Pel- legrini, CEO of Dada Entertainment. “Dada.net can offer a complete mobile music service – cus- tomers can download and pay for their music all through their mobile phones,” he said. “With over 65 percent of all new phones purchased in the United States as music-en- abled, it makes sense for a new company like ours to be D2C.” As the demand for digital content and the numbers of con- sumers using the mobile Internet continue to rise, content providers see the value of going D2C via the mobile Web. Using the mobile Web, consumers can purchase and download a variety of digital content as easily as they do on the PC Internet. Many brands are realizing that by integrating the promotion of the mobile service with the rest of the mainstream marketing, it is true that “if you build it – they will come!” Ray Anderson is Cambridge, England-based CEO of Bango, a mobile Internet services provider. Reach him at ray@bango.com PAGE 22 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE HHaattee ccrroowwddss??WWaanntt yyoouurr mmoobbiillee ccoonntteenntt ttoo ssttaanndd oouutt?? TTrryy tthhiinnkkiinngg gglloobbaallllyy,, aaccttiinngg llooccaallllyy aanndd eemmbbrraacciinngg tthhee mmoobbiillee WWeebb
  24. 24. By Matthew Talbot T he mobile industry has been discussing mobile banking services and mobile payments for more than 10 years, and finally we will begin to see financial institutions fully exploit the potential of mobile commerce. Consumers have become increasingly sophisticated and are demanding easier access to their finances. Gone are the days of branch banking and paying by check. Consumers and corporate clients are now look- ing to access financial services without time, loca- tion or device restrictions. Like Internet banking and electronic pay- ments, mobile commerce is a way for banks—and even wireless carriers—to create new service of- ferings with the potential for creating new revenue streams or cost-saving opportunities. Banks have been testing and launching mobile commerce products since the mid- to late 1990s. After the first faltering steps of WAP banking, banks often re- stricted themselves to simple push information and marketing alert services. These alerts services, when promoted, have been ex- tremely successful for banks over the last five years. In the last few years, we have seen a small number of banks ex- panding their service offering beyond the simple one-way push alerts, both as a response to consumer demands and to address business is- sues for banks—including information requests and security enhancements. A great example is on-demand account balance via the mobile phone. Up to 60 percent of calls to a bank’s call center involve an ac- count balance request. If a bank moves even a fraction of these calls to the mobile channel, there are clear cost benefits for the bank as well as a better customer experience. As banks and carriers expand their portfolio of mobile products and services, they will need to break out of the single channel approach and offer services via multiple channels (SMS, Java, BREW and WAP) to address both the limitations and reach of a particular channel, balanced against consumer preference and confidence in individual modes of access. Mobile payments The roots of mobile payments can be traced back to the first pre- mium-rate telephone services to the mobile ringtone business launched in 1999. Today, these mobile payment options still flourish in the market- place, but have been complemented by a range of new mobile payment services – including mobile top-ups, credit cards, direct debit and mo- bile wallets – incorporating the likes of remittance products. While these services have, so far, come from small independent companies and are geographically based, it is clear that these services are a natural extension of traditional banking products and payment in- struments, positioning banks and carriers as best placed to deliver such products to their customers. The ubiquitous nature of the mobile device creates the opportu- nity for new products and services, and one such product is mobile remittances. The official remittance market today is worth over $250 billion. With mobile as the predominant communication tool in the key remittance markets ofAsia,Africa, the Middle East and Latin America, it is no surprise that remittances have been extended to mobile. As with the expansion of mobile banking serv- ices, the range of mobile payments services will expand as consumer confidence increases in mo- bile as a payment instrument. Future developments, including using the mo- bile for Near Field Communications (NFC) trans- actions such as transportation, ticketing and payment for digital and physical goods, will only serve to increase this confidence. Mobile commerce, a young but rapidly-growing segment, is already providing glimpses into what will cer- tainly become a major means of day-to-day commerce for bil- lions of consumers and enterprises worldwide. It is inevitable that the world evolves from a Web model to a mo- bile browsing model. With the maturity gained by growing from an experimental chan- nel to a core customer channel, consistency of experience, reliability and product offering will be of even greater importance. Matthew Talbot is the Singapore-based vice president of mobile commerce at Sybase 365. Reach him at matthew.talbot@sybase.com BBaannkkss aanndd ccaarrrriieerrss ffiinnaallllyy rreeaalliizziinngg tthhee ppoowweerr ooff mmoobbiillee ccoommmmeerrccee MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 23
  25. 25. By Richard Eicher R emember the early days of the Internet when all you needed was a Web site and you got lots of traffic? It didn’t take long before the number of Web sites grew ex- ponentially and with it the competition for visitors. So too will competition grow for visitors to your mo- bile Internet site. Site discovery and repeat visits should be con- sidered fundamental tasks in your mobile com- merce and marketing plans. Three important vehicles include messaging, mobile search and cross-platform advertising. Messaging Messaging can drive traffic to your mobile site and foster customer interaction. Campaigns are easy to create and messaging is fa- miliar to the recipient. Through your messaging provider, create an SMS or MMS message including a clickable link to your mobile site. Choose custom keywords and create a messaging call-to-action. Promote your keywords in print and broadcast. Add links to your Web site. For broad reach, promote in mass-market media. For select markets, target by media type or geographic areas, such as a specific retail departments in certain cities. Messaging can also be used for post-transaction confirmations and follow-up communications. With your customer’s opt-in, use these messages to offer alert subscriptions and related content and services. SMS or MMS? It depends on your objective. SMS is less expensive but limited to 160 charac- ters. MMS is more expensive but can include thou- sands of characters plus images, audio and video slides. Search The typical search is conducted through search en- gines, content discovery services, Q&A services and di- rectory services initiated through mobile browsers, downloaded client applications and voice or text requests. There are many ways to have your mobile site discovered. Increasing search visibility will vary by service and requires some research. However, most important is to have your site designed specifi- cally for mobile devices. For search engine search engine optimization, carefully follow the provider’s guidelines, including mobile sitemap submission. Advertising One of the best places to advertise your mobile site is within the mobile space itself. This audience is generally mobile savvy and often has mes- saging and data plans to use mobile services with little or no concern for airtime charges. Options include banner, text and image ads on mobile Internet sites, including content publishers and social networks, sponsored mobile search links, advertising in mobile content and sponsor- ing or creating your own applications and con- tent delivered through subscription services for ongoing interaction. Using cross-channel advertising has proven to be very effective. List your URL on your Web site and include a send-to-phone link using SMS or MMS. Promote your keyword in print and broadcast to ini- tiate a text-to-shortcode or optical (e.g., 2D barcode) call-to- action. Most importantly, be sure your site is quick and easy to access, op- timize it for the majority of handsets and offer timely content and serv- ices of real value to your audience. Richard Eicher is president of Skycore LLC, Boston. Reach him at reicher@skycore.com PAGE 24 MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE SSoo,, yyoouu hhaavvee aa mmoobbiillee ssiittee.. WWhhaatt’’ss nneexxtt??
  26. 26. By Mory Bahar O nce again we are reminded of an old analogy. Personalization is like teenage sex: Everybody is talking about it, very few are actually experiencing it and of the few who do, hardly anyone knows how to do it well. Whether we call it personalization or not, most of us recognize its importance: Presenting content that resonates with the audience of one. Personalization is also making offers that tie to the personal needs and desires of the recipient. Also, it is tailoring an ad to the profile and perceived needs of the specific individual viewing the ad. What is personalization? By personalization, we mean that the content we present, the ad that we display, or the offer we make to an individual is relevant to, sensitive to, and important to that individual's profile and preferences. For example, Amazon.com attempts to personalize its offers to me based on previous books that I have purchased. Two different people can log onto their Ama- zon accounts and get totally different offers. It is not perfect personalization but it is an excellent example. Why is personalization important and relevant to the mobile world? Since mobile phones are personal devices, personalization of messages, ads, offers and content makes sense for mobile marketers. It is a great opportunity for a business when communicating with an individual. Increasingly mobile users will expect to receive offers, ads and content that is relevant to their personal situation. This scenario is in contrast to the content, ad or offer most businesses make on their Web site or other media where everyone sees the same thing. In addition, since the mobile platform is very limited on space and speed, as mo- bile marketers we have no choice but to be selective and show the content that is most relevant to the individual. We don’t have the space, and the individual doesn’t have the patience to scroll through pages and pages of content. For example, on my laptop Amazon can recommend 10 books to me on one page. But on the mobile platform they may be limited to featuring just one book. In this case, they need to make a much more intelligent decision on what to show me based on my personal profile and preferences. In search of a common understanding In absence of any other standard, here is my proposal on various levels of per- sonalization. The first level is take it or leave it. It is when there has been no attempt to take you and your preferences into account. This is how the network television, radio, publishers and many mobile and Web content providers continue to operate. You get whatever they planned for you. The next level is context-sensitive. Based on the context, marketers make some assumptions about the viewer. The message is then tailored based on those as- sumptions. For example, ads for tennis gear could be shown during the televised Wimble- don matches. Note however that the ad that the viewer sees is no different from any other individual watching the same match. In addition, the assumption made about the viewer may be inaccurate. Just be- cause it is women’s finals, does not mean that the viewer is a woman. The next level is menu of choices. There are many content providers, portals and publishers who claim personalization of content, yet all they provide is a menu of choices to select from. Here, the individual gets a menu and gets to choose, as you would select from a menu at a restaurant. You get to select the dish you want, but they get to decide what is on the menu and how each dish is prepared. For example, on a finance portal, I pick the stocks that I want to follow and the publisher displays the price and volume data for those stocks. On the wired Web, I select “High Cholesterol” as my topic of interest, and WebMD, periodically, sends me an online collection of articles that are somehow connected to that topic. Is this level of personalization adequate? Imagine you are in the old Soviet Union. You are handed a list of jobs or careers that a central committee has decided that the country needs and you get to pick one. Do you want your career choices be limited to the imagination of the comrades of the central committee who made the list? Probably not. The “menu” reflects their preferences, not yours. And the solution is not just adding to the number of items on the menu. Would you be content with eHarmony.com to present to you all candidates in their database, male and female, young and old, local and international? You as the marketer must help me the individual, by reducing the menu to a manageable subset of all the available choices based on my personal preferences. To do this, however, you would need to first learn about me and my preferences. The next level is personalization. Using the restaurant analogy again, here the patron can ask for something that is not on the menu, or gets to tweak the recipe (e.g., no salt, more garlic, olive oil instead of butter). I tell the finance site what I have in my portfolio – how many shares of which stocks and it can now tell me how much I made (or more likely lost) in the market today. Naturally, we cannot provide this level of personalization unless the mobile user is willing to tell us about his or her preferences and we have the tools and tech- nology to deliver on the higher expectation. If WebMD can send me one newsletter that focuses only on adult males who have high cholesterol, very high triglyceride, family history of prostate cancer and like to lose couple of pounds (i.e., my personal profile) then that would be consid- ered personalization. Incidentally, this type of need is what motivated me and my partners to create our company. The last level is intimacy. Using the restaurant analogy again, at this level the patron does not need to make any choices or tweak any recipes. This is because the waiter already recognizes the patron and serves to his taste without being told. Last year, a friend invited me to lunch at his favorite restaurant. His usual drink along with the side drink arrived at the same time as we were seated. If I clicked on the sport icon on my mobile phone and it recognized that it is me, it is fall, it is Monday night and it automatically tuned into Monday Night Football (without me explicitly programming it to do so) then that is an example of intimacy. Conclusion Mobile phones and personalization provide mobile marketer the best chance to target individuals and deliver most relevant and high impact ads, offers, informa- tion and services. Increasingly, mobile users will demand it. To deliver an acceptable form of personalization we need to move beyond the primitive forms of context-sensitive and menu of choices. To personalize, we must get to know the individual prospects and customers. We need to learn about or just ask them their preferences, validate our assumptions about them, take into account their behavior and then generate offers, ads, content and service that respect their individuality. Achieving more advanced forms of personalization will not be easy. It may require a total redesign for many mobile and Web businesses and con- tent providers. Some businesses like publishers and portals may find this transition very difficult. But for many other businesses, based on unique profile of their customers and prospects, they can tailor their ads and offers, and tie them to most relevant prod- ucts, features and options. Mory Bahar is the president/CEO of Personal Remedies LLC, Boston. Reach him at morybahar@personalremedies.com PPeerrssoonnaalliizzaattiioonn:: TTeeeennaaggee sseexx aallll oovveerr aaggaaiinn MOBILE MARKETERʼS CLASSIC GUIDE TO MOBILE COMMERCE PAGE 25
  27. 27. 2009 BUYERS’ GUIDE >>> The definitive vendor resource for purchase-empowered mobile execs.Ad deadline March 15, publishes April 1. Please contact Jodie Solomon at 212.334.6366 or jodie@mobilemarketer.com Mobile Marketer