Smart businesses are embracing the potential of mobile devices to transform how they engage with their customers. And with good reason - mobile commerce revenues are set to reach 50% of all U.S. digital commerce revenue by 2017.
The functionality of mobile devices has increased dramatically over the past 10 years and businesses are now engaging in seamless customer conversations across multiple mobile channels — whether SMS, voice call, rich media messages, email, social networking or app push notifications.
And this functionality is set to expand further: Gartner predicts that in 2017, more than $2 billion in online shopping will be performed exclusively by mobile digital assistants, such as Google Now and Siri.
Right customer, right message
Mobile devices enable smart businesses to match the right communications channel to the right customer.
Companies are using mobile devices to move beyond delivering generic messages to broad customer segments, towards sending personalised content that offers tangible, immediate value to the recipient. A great example of this is Uber using push notifications to notify customers when surge pricing periods end in their area.
Innovative retailers are offering mobile-enabled experiences that offer customers more choice in how they pay for goods and services. Starbucks’ own mobile wallet now accounts for 7 million transactions a week in the U.S. (16% of all Starbucks transactions). That’s a lot of coffee. Marketers are using mobile-only promotional offers to make customers aware of the range of ways they can engage using their devices.
KLM - mobile engagement in action
Let’s examine how leading global airline, KLM, increased customer awareness of their mobile offerings. During a three-week campaign, KLM offered an incentive of free airport lounge passes to passengers who used its mobile booking engine. Passes were sent to customers as a mobile coupon within their passbook (Apple) or Google wallet (Android). When the customer was close to the lounge, these apps sent a location-based push notification, prompting them to redeem their coupon.
The results? A 17% increase in visits to KLM’s mobile site, generating 34% more bookings and 38% more mobile revenue.
Turning notifications into conversations
Mobile technology provides a broad range of options for customer conversations:
- British Airways are using SMS as a key customer service channel, cutting airport wait time and inbound passenger calls.
- Major banks safeguard customer information by sending unique SMS codes for 2-factor authentication.
- Email marketers are tailoring their email campaigns to smartphone screens, as research suggests that up to 65% of all emails are now opened on a mobile device
Empowering customers to choose how they communicate
As the functionality of mobile devices become increasingly sophisticated, customer conversations with businesses are spanning an ever-growing number of channels.
What’s fundamentally empowering about mobile devices is that once users have received a communication on their device, they then can respond on their terms — continuing the conversation in the channel they prefer
How does this work in practice?
A leading Australian department store uses Whispir to improve its out-of-store marketing with targeted offers & promotions, and for enhanced satisfaction & loyalty using surveys and tailored notifications. Two of the ways the platform is used include:
1. Seasonal Campaign Catalogues - time to market is reduced when generating seasonal catalogues while maintaining App-like experience. Video content can be showcased, providing an all-in-one shopping experience targeted at seasonal events.
2. Loyalty offer rewards – integration with CRM and marketing databases allows customers to be automatically notified when wish list or aligned products are on sale – exceeding expectations with personalised & relevant offers.
Customers can reply to offers or respond to surveys, and embedded sharing links allow messages to be immediately forwarded to their personal networks.
The growth in mobile capability and reach means businesses now have an unprecedented opportunity to leverage the full power of their customers’ devices to have more rewarding conversations.
Communicating effectively to mobile devices requires a solution that combines engaging content, and providing your audience with the ability to interact in a multitude of ways, with the capability to embed workflows into your communications. This allows for response, escalation and continued engagement on a mass scale.