Growing up digital

Seems like I’m always going on about this however, technology changes and influences the way we live. Growing up in the 80’s in small town New Zealand I really could not imagine the technologies that are every day common place in 2011.

In my mind technology is an enabler, its a pathway to deliver what ever you need. Smart people will develop ideas, solutions, and innovations that will disrupt the current way of doing stuff these in turn will create new opportunities. Devices like the iPhone and iPad  are great example of this, amongst other uses they are the new battle ground for business. Mobile devices are always with us, always on, always connected, the user is ready to interact and engage with you the via the mobile web, social media, SMS, QR Codes and the list goes on.

The mobile device is an effective way to communicate with and influence the consumer. How? Become OBSESSED with the end user experience, get an intimate understanding of their needs, tasks, and requirements.

Check out the below video, it’s kind of related.

Word.

Content will find me

In this age of the hyper transaction and sharing of information enabled by the internet and mobile devices they say that content will find you. I struggled with what that may mean initially. We have access to so much information that it seems that we may get lost in it some how, and the types and sources of information only seem to grow. Social media really helps to deliver qualified content to the consumer (by qualified I mean content that you are interested in, generated by other like minded individuals, groups, or organisations).

How? I will use myself as an example, I am on a quest to find out as much as I can about the intersection of mobile, social media / commerce, and digital marketing. So I follow the tweets of other like minded individuals and experts like Mitch Joel, Luke Wroblewski, or Mashable (and plenty of others). Every day useful and relevant content makes its way to me via their tweets, content finds me.

How will this be facilitated in the near future…I’m not sure, will search engines get better? will it be social media? or some kind of mash-up of the two?

How will social commerce create better business?

According to Erik Qualman word of mouth is the most powerful and effective form of marketing in a traditional (b2b, b2c) sense. In his book Socialnomics he states that social media is like

“Word of mouth on digital steroids”

Where traditional word of mouth experiences spread and travel slowly, digital word of mouth spreads at lightning speeds around the social networks of your customers. The good or not so good experiences’ that customers are having with your brand, products, or services will be shared with their friends, family, and associates within their social networks instantly. Scarey stuff. The fact is that customers are more likely to trust the words and experiences (the social influence) of their friends, family, and associates then those spread by any organisation no matter how persuasive the messages are or how much money is spent delivering it.

Consider this, while in Rod & Gunn Joe tweets to his followers about the awesome customer service that he just received and the huge sale that’s on, in-store directly from his smartphone (iPhone 4). What if he had a negative experience? Social media will drive more transparent customer focused experiences’ because companies will be held accountable by customers on Facebook and Twitter.

Organisations are going to have to consider the impact that social commerce will have on their business functions. Better yet have a strategy and pathway in place to help them engage with their customers utilising social media. Make, deliver, or create awesome experiences’ and your customers will  (Twitter, Facebook) your praises. Social commerce = better business.

Word.

Why you need to go mobile.

It is no great revelation that mobile web and smartphone devices are here, that they are changing the way that business is done. From my perspective many businesses or business owners still haven’t worked out the power and value of the web, or how to leverage that power and value for their benefit. It is the digital portal to your services and offerings, it’s what the world sees, it maybe a potential customers only interaction with your brand / organisation. What are you serving them up?

People no longer want to log-in at their desktop or laptop computer to learn about what you do or engage with your brand or organisation when they have that power and ability in their pockets and purses. Smart mobile devices (and the mobile web) are always with us and always on, usually they are the last thing we look at before we go to sleep and the first thing that we reach for in the morning (even if its just to turn the alarm off).

Any smart brand / organisation should want to find out how they can engage with consumers in the mobile space. This represents a huge opportunity to communicate with and influence consumers in a personal and meaningful way. Optimise your site for a better mobile experience now.

Check out this article over on Gigaom – http://gigaom.com/2011/01/29/mobile-poor-site-performance-is-holding-us-back/