It is estimated that there are over five billion mobile subscriptions globally. Increased bandwidth, availability and device functionality has led to widespread use of mobile handsets in almost everything we do. The mobile device is quickly becoming the remote control of people’s lives. Customers expect more personalised mobile business services to be provided over the mobile device, while employees are demanding a greater array of sophisticated mobile business services to improve productivity.
In an industry where the technology and key players continue to evolve rapidly and demand is becoming ever more intense, organisations are faced with a challenge - develop a coherent mobile business model and strategy, beyond simple point solutions, or risk being increasingly disengaged from their customers and employees.
To maximise the opportunities from mobile business services, organisations need look beyond the ‘app’ to understand how they can positively engage with their customers to impact the top and bottom lines of their business.
Mobile for efficiency - Process efficiencies are primarily achieved by optimising basic field services or by enabling employee and customer self-service applications. For example, it is estimated that by leveraging mobile technology in the field, utility companies have been able to increase productivity by 10% to 20% per employee.
Mobile for marketing - The personal nature of the mobile device enables organisations to build brand awareness and loyalty, generating additional revenue by facilitating greater customer interaction. As the boundaries of traditional marketing channels and mobile merge, new opportunities to engage customers arise. Rolex recently launched an advertising campaign that leveraged mobile image recognition technology to bridge traditional advertising, enabling customers to take a photo of an ad to receive mobile promotions. With the rise of tablets, campaigns will come alive on the screen, enabling customers to interact in a more personalised and engaged manner.
Mobile as a channel - The ubiquitous nature of mobile presents the opportunity for organisations to enhance services to deliver significant profit. Within the financial services sector, profits from mobile payments are soaring. eBay's payments business grew 26% to $809.3 million in the first quarter of 2010. Within healthcare there is a growing trend to leverage mHealth to improve quality of care while reducing costs by facilitating greater remote care. In the utilities sector, smart grid is seen as means to better manage residential and commercial energy consumption.
Mobile as a disruptive business model - Synonymous with innovation, mobile presents organisations with the opportunity to diversify existing portfolios by disrupting existing value chains, developing entirely new revenue streams. Google anticipates mobile ad revenues to top $10 billion by 2013. However, it is the ubiquitous nature of the device that perhaps holds the most opportunity for disruption. Recent world events have demonstrated the ability for mobile to bring the Internet to the masses, impact the gathering and distribution of funding for aid and refugee programmes, improve healthcare in remote areas and transform emerging economies by enabling mobile payments.
As mobile users demand an ever-increasing level of sophisticated and personalised mobile services, organisations that invest and tap into the power of mobile help ensure they will remain relevant and productive. Those who do not, may find themselves being left behind the competition, and increasingly disconnected from their customers and employees.
To learn more about PA Consulting Group's approach to mobile strategy and how we can help your organisation tap into the potential of mobile business, please contact us now.