Shifts In The Mobile Conversation: Takeaways From ModevCon
I recently traveled to DC and presented at ModevCon on growing mobile app retention and revenue by investing in customer engagement. Over the course of the two-day conference, I had the opportunity to speak with leaders in the mobile app industry and attended a number of breakout sessions on app design and the mobile experience.
Throughout these sessions and conversations, three themes kept coming up as an indicator of where mobile (and the way we talk about mobile) is headed: the rise of enterprise apps, the importance of mobile customer relationships, and a heightened focus on the customer’s experience with your app.
1. Mobile enterprise apps are on the rise.
Mobile-first isn’t just for startups. Across the globe, enterprises are using mobile to redefine themselves and innovate.
Skip Potter, Capital One’s Vice President of Engineering, cemented this point in his opening keynote address. Capital One has been an early adopter of mobile payments and other new technologies that make banking easier. In his presentation, Skip went over his experience with rolling out an array of native apps across multiple platforms to better serve the needs of Capital One’s 62 million customers. Building not only a “mobile-first” but an “API-first” mentality into the company’s culture, he was able to design a scalable mobile infrastructure and leverage the growth of the mobile market to expand Capital One’s business and increase its customer value.
Skip best summed up the trend of large enterprises embracing technology and mobile solutions when he defined Capital One not as a bank, but as a tech company that just happens to work in the financial services industry.
2. The conversation is shifting to emotional dynamics.
We’re not the only ones talking about Customer Love. Throughout ModevCon, I noticed conversations shifting from usability to desirability when it comes to valuing an app. With over 1.3 million apps in both the iTunes App Store and the Google Play Store, it’s no longer enough just to create an app that’s useful. You need to build an app that people want to use – even as they’re presented with an array of equally useful apps that seem to address the same need.
In a ModevCon session titled, “Win Hearts, Win Users with Emotional Design,” Erin Daniels of Design for People showed the power of empathy in e-commerce. By tapping into their customers’ emotions, Erin revealed, mobile publishers are able to truly delight their customers.
Delighted customers, in turn, will be more engaged, more apt to promote your app, and more willing to make a purchase through your app as a result of the trust you’ve built.
3. The mobile experience is becoming less about the app and more about the people.
No matter the topic, there was one concept that each of the sessions ultimately circled back to – the customer experience.
But in contrast to previous discussions around user interface and accessibility, speed, and usability, this year’s conversations took a broader approach when it came to defining the mobile experience. The customer experience today has less to do with the design of your app than it does with the meaningful interactions you have with your mobile customers. It’s the customer who is becoming increasingly mobile, and it is the job of the app to reflect and integrate with the consumers’ changing lifestyle and expectations.
Dan Katz, the Vice President of Technology Solutions at INADEV Corporation, took a particularly interesting approach to this conversation as he discussed his project of introducing mobile and augmented reality experiences to the hallowed grounds of the National Mall. INADEV was given the opportunity to “reinvent the customer experience” at the National World War II and National Korean War Veterans Memorials in Washington D.C. by designing an ecosystem of experiences, systems, and apps to enhance and enrich an already powerful experience, showing that the impact of a strong customer experience reaches far beyond the app. (Read more about INADEV’s work with the National Mall here.)
How have you experienced these three shifts with mobile and the way we talk about it? Or perhaps you have a different perspective on where mobile is headed?
Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!