by Tony Fannin, President, BE Branded
In an unusual step, I’m going to discuss a specific tactic instead of staying big picture. I’m doing this because I believe that this tactic will gain more relevance and importance in you marketing mix in the near future. That tactic is mobile. The introduction of the iPad is accelerating the momentum that is already building. People are less tied to their desktop and becoming less constricted to their laptop. The iPad and other like devices may be relegating the laptop to a secondary role.
So, what’s this have to do with my brand and marketing efforts? Plenty. Here are a few of my observations:
• Think differently – You must think differently about the online experience. Your web site needs to morph more into an interactive multimedia experience. With the touchscreen technology, consumers are able to do more. If your online experience doesn’t take advantage of that, you’ll be bypassed by companies who do. You can no longer think just static pages and heavy reading. Smaller screens, people on the go, and other issues forces businesses to provide content that matches the way people interact with the web.
• Be useful – Now days, consumers are getting used to using their mobile devices and iPads as tools, not just content readers. Your online experience needs to offer something of use beyond just providing information. For example, Stanley Tools offers an app that will turn your iPhone into a level that is very useful and fun. They took advantage of the mobile environment and made it work with their brand.
• Video driven – The web is becoming more video driven. People would rather watch and read which is why YouTube has become such a popular site. Even on typical web sites, videos are more popular than clicking a link to read. In a funny twist, the internet is borrowing an old school platform, TV. Watching entertaining content is more appealing and effective. This relates to the concept that the more senses you engage on a viewer, the more likely they will not only take time with your content, it will stay with them longer. The home run is being able to engage at least 4 of the 5 senses. This is one of the key reasons why videos are more effective when it comes to communicating your brand and your message.
• Smaller bites – Many people use their mobile devices in smaller chunks of time. For example, looking at content on your cell while you are waiting for your takeout order or standing in line until the theater doors open. It is these five minute encounters that you can leverage your brand through a mobile-centric web experience. Five minutes at a time over 4 or 5 times a day will quickly add up. Also what you are doing is piquing the interest of a customer that, when they get home, will look you up on their desktop or laptop and investigate further.
Using mobile as the lead in strategy to your online experience will become more important as devices such as the iPad begin to take a larger market share. Many are predicting that such devices will make laptops a middle tier category. And, like most middle positions, it gets squeezed from the top and bottom. By making your online experience centered more around mobile, you’ll be able to generate greater interest in your online properties overall. Cell phones will become an entry point to your brand. Keep this in mind as you create your online experience. People are on the go and use their cells as tools… and they may want fries with that as well.