Year of the mobile?

28 September 2011Tony Patterson

It’s been the year of the mobile for some time now, but Christmas has never arrived. Despite being associated with some remarkable statistics around growth and potential, mobile has still not delivered on its promise to retailers.

One of the key challenges is that mobile cuts across the traditional organisational structure. It calls for the synthesis of marketing expertise (in both existing and new channels) with a deep understanding of underpinning technology. To make matters worse, it also requires the input from other, currently non-core channels such as content generation / delivery and audience understanding / planning. Benchmark your organisation and your agency (or agencies) against these criteria – as we have recently done – to adopt the right mindset for making a start.

However, it’s the very disparity of the channel that offers us all an opportunity. Other retailers will find it difficult to gain traction amid the requirement to combine marketing and technology.

Our understanding of the importance of the retail context gives Summit early mover advantage amongst generalist agencies and specialist mobile companies.

The challenge is to embrace the new, emergent nature of mobile and help deliver a viable channel for retailers. We need to be consultative in the first instance:

  •     Understand the customer journey for your brand
  •     Audit your current capability
  •     Learn from your competitors and best practice
  •     Be pragmatic in the early stages of delivery – using some robust tracking to provide the insights you need to improve performance

Tony is Summit’s head of online marketing, a channel that includes client services, channel delivery, product development and new business. Tony has a wealth of experience consulting retailers, and blogs about digital process and strategy.

Tony Patterson

Tony is Summit's Chief Operations Officer and oversees the online marketing channel within Summit including client services, channel delivery, product development and new business.Tony has a wealth of experience consulting retailers and blogs about digital process and strategy.