Going Mobile in 2015: 4 Things You Need to Know
by Orrin Broberg, on Nov, 3, 2014
2015 planning season is upon us. There’s no shortage of articles and social posts with marketing, sales and operations advice. There is at least one recurring theme throughout all of these posts: 2015 is the year your company needs to go mobile. With that in mind, here are four things you absolutely need to know to successfully enable your organization for mobile.
1. Having a mobile strategy is step one. Mobile is an investment in all senses of the word -- your time, money and resources. With any sizable business investment, you need to have a plan going in or you’re leaving too much up to chance. Before you decide which mobile solution is right for your organization, do your research.
First, define what problems you want to solve with mobile. Then, decide which department is going to be responsible for specific aspects of the strategy-- adoption, implementation, and maintenance. After you’ve defined your needs and who needs to be involved, it’s time to research solution providers. The big question you need to ask yourself at this point is whether you want to develop your own app from the ground up or get a custom app using an existing technology platform. Development time, price, implementation and ongoing support are all factors to consider in this decision. Once you’ve determined your desired approach, it’s time to sit down and figure out exactly how the implementation process is going to work within your organization. Who will be testing your app? How will you be communicating with your staff about the anticipated roll out? Which department will handle questions about the app, about the content, and about implementation itself?
2. You don’t need to be a technology expert. Developing a mobile app for your business in-house takes a lot of technological know-how. Many organizations simply aren’t equipped -- whether their IT departments are too busy, or they don’t have the staff or resources to take it on. That shouldn’t stop you from becoming a mobile enabled enterprise.
If you decide to outsource the work or find a white-label provider, your next task is research. You’ll need to find the service providers that offer you everything you need. This step may involve a series of trial periods with several different platforms until you find something that fits your needs.
Regardless of the path you take to mobile, your organization will eventually need to get there. The expectations of B2B and B2C buyers are evolving and moving toward mobile-first solutions. Your organization needs to meet customers where they are. Don’t let the ‘we don’t know how to do mobile’ excuse lull your brand into extinction.
3. Getting “buy-in” across the organization isn’t as hard as you may think. Making a business case for mobile is becoming increasingly easy. There is ample research from marketing, sales, operations, and IT perspectives that explain why it’s not only beneficial, but necessary to incorporate mobile into your organization.
Communicating early and often with colleagues in impacted departments will allow you to get a better picture of how a mobile solution would realistically fit into your business. Moreover, it will help determine what your implementation process should look like. Once you’ve done your homework on solutions, business impact and rollout; going to the executive team with a mobile strategy plan will be much easier. Anticipate their questions and concerns and make sure you have answers ready.
4. Becoming mobile is a process, not a destination. Implementing a mobile solution isn’t simply set-it-and-forget-it. Just like any other functioning digital strategy, your mobile strategy will constantly evolve. A good strategy is based on sound analysis of results and data - preferably data generated from the app analytics. Your strategy needs to be flexible enough to accommodate change, whether it is technology, business goals, or geographical expansion. The key to good strategic decision-making is ensuring everyone on the team has well-defined roles and responsibilities.
Next week, we’ll talk about creating a custom app in-house vs. creating a custom app using a white label solution, so keep an eye out!
After you’ve considered each of these four elements, you should know how and why to implement a mobile strategy in your business. If you have questions about becoming a mobile enabled organization, don’t hesitate to reach out! Send us an email, or Tweet us at @modusengagement!