Tips to be Mobiletastic: Connect the Dots
Remember when you were younger and your parents or teacher would give you a connect-the-dots activity to do? It was simple, you connected a seemingly random group of dots in a way that when done you were left with a pretty picture.
Since the mobile experience is becoming more and more fragmented, I hope Mobiletastic Tip 5: Connect the Dots will help you connect those pieces and bring it all together to make a pretty picture – the picture representing the best multi-channel customer experience possible.
It’s confusing enough myopically, looking at just the mobile experience. But what makes it even more confusing is that it’s not just about mobile. The reality is today’s consumers are multi-channel, multi-device consumers and mobile has an impressive duality, making for a complex, sometimes hard-to-navigate environment. The duality is this: mobile is both a stand-alone channel where you can engage with it alone and a companion channel where it supports other experiences customers might be having with your brand.
The mobile experience is becoming more challenging every day. It’s hard because there’s so much to get your arms around. You have phones operating across mobile sites and apps, you have tablets operating across mobile sites and apps, and you have an increasing array of operating systems. Mobile is hard, it’s confusing.
What we’ve realized is that the traditional metrics – the tracking and counting of things – is a little misleading when trying to traverse through this new multi-channel landscape. Just because you’re measuring more people are coming to your sites doesn’t necessarily mean you’re doing a good job. It could simply just mean that more people are using mobile experiences, but it doesn’t mean they are satisfied with the experiences you provide. It doesn’t mean they’re going to buy anything or subscribe or come back again.
Mobile is cool, exciting, and we are inordinately proud when we have what we consider to be cool mobile experiences. But first we have to get out of the mindset that just because we’re developing a mobile experience that it is the center of the universe. Because it’s NOT – the customer is. When you realize that, only then you can begin to draw everything together by connecting the dots.
Tip 5: Connect the Dots is all about recognizing that mobile influences other channels. It might influence a store experience, a call experience, a web experience, a social media experience, and/or an email experience. We also need to understand that mobile is also influenced by these other channels, creating this wonderful bidirectional flow. As someone is engaging at a store and wants to look something up they reach for their mobile device, creating an impressive and quality nexus point to measure in.
If we measure mobile well enough, we can start to understand not just who is coming to the site and why, but also the influence back to these other channels. In Tip 3: Measure, Measure, Measure we talked about knowing what you know (the quantity of things) and knowing what you don’t know (the quality of things). These two things together allow us to complete the picture of the behaviors and the attitudes of what people are engaging in. Attitudes will drive what people do (purchase, purchase again, return to the site, remain loyal, and recommend to others) and that’s a very important component when connecting the dots.
There is a major break point in the analytical systems we have between tracking and trending somebody in mobile and their impact to another channel. It continues to get more complex. What happens when a customer goes from the web to mobile to a store? Or, they go to a store, then to their mobile device, then to web, then to social media to ask friends, then back to mobile because they were using that for their social experience, and then make the final purchase on the web? It JUST DOESN’T QUIT. How do get the most reliable data from a multiple-device experience like that? Better yet, how do predict what a multi-device consumer will do next? With the right technology – one that is accurate, precise, and sensitive – you can measure across all touch points, see where the different experiences intersect and actually predict what the consumer will do next.
Mobile lives before, during, and after key experiences. So when we measure well – the behaviors and attitudes of what people are doing – it starts to connect the dots and you can begin to see the full picture a little more clearly. You start to get a sense not only of mobile attribution, but of mobile contribution – something we explore deeply with our on-exit approach in mobile.
Because you mean so much to me, I’m leaving you with a bonus tip. Tip 6, if you will. Trust Your Instincts.
Remember, in life as in mobile, to always Trust Your Instincts. Mobile is a new and nascent industry. People say it has matured, or the year of the mobile is this year or next or has already passed. Don’t listen. If what you are thinking about doing is adventurous and exciting and you think it will work…it probably will. So, use your instincts when you are developing in mobile. It’s the one area where we still have a shot of piquing people’s interest, changing the ways they can engage with us, and offering them the ability to do things with your brand that are easier, faster, more convenient than they ever imagined. We have the flexibility to do what we want and to do it in the best interest of the consumer and to positively influence the other experiences that our companies have control over.