The gap between the corporate world and the consumers has always been a sensitive, very well-looked after space. It represents the vital connection between a company and its clients and thus, the only significant spot of influence upon the customer’s decisions. It has its own microenvironment that needs to be maintained in order for the company and its clients to co-exist.
Then misunderstandings occur and smart reactions are a must if you intend to keep the balance; companies generally ‘intend’ to make it easy for the consumer to understand things and work with their products/services; however, this fluidity is highly subjective – what appears to be simple to some could be complicated to others. This clash occurs when the companies fail to put the necessary effort into keeping their own customers and ignore the power of the invaluable feedback on their performance.
We could describe the mobile engagement strategy and all of its complications as a safe bubble with its own microenvironment – we have your number, we know your business, we try to make things easy for you, so you could trust us. The enterprise-oriented mobile engagement is also known for A2P SMS and it’s probably the only thing that’s kept the SMS system alive. Over the years we’ve grown attached to the two-step verification process that banks use – it’s quite easy and immediate when it comes to figuring out whether your information has fallen into the wrong hands.
But apart from the directly practical events – such as financial operations – the possibilities offered by the SMS/MMS platform for mobile engagement are quite limited due it’s extremely out-dated interface. People expect a much more dynamic and personalised communication with the companies that interest them and not the unappealingly flat dryness of an SMS message. Maybe this is a struggle that Rich Communication Services (RCS) will eventually solve, but until that solution is globalised, we are stuck with the derisively nostalgic SMS platform.
Still, mobile engagement will grow exponentially in the next few years, turning it into an indispensable marketing tool; consumers like transparency, so they would look forward to smart messages from their favourite brands but their demands and expectations have also shot up. The broiling market is composed of three kinds of services: mobile engagement services, mobile device and app management services and mobile app development services. And even though the market will expand and develop, it will not be an easy battle due to several disconcerting discoveries that bring an imbalance to this co-existence:
- 50% of consumers trust their mobile operators and brands less than they did three years ago. And who would with the amount of possibilities out there, with every new player on the block trying to pave their way through the giants which retort by panicking and misleading their clients, resulting in a massive stampede of crushed loyalty? https://www.syniverse.com/mobile-trust-expertise
- App User Retention Rate has declined internationally – 23% of users ditch an app after one use. It has improved only in the US and has been demonstrated to be a lot more challenging in the incredibly fast developing China. How can retention be improved though? Effective push notifications offer a 56% increase on User Retention, so that’s a clue to find the right path. http://info.localytics.com/blog/app-user-retention-improves-in-the-us
- Views/traffic to a mobile site/app is the most popular metric of mobile success https://www.forrester.com/report/CMOs+Own+Mobile+To+Own+Your+Customers/-/E-RES120363
- Even though push notifications might improve retention rate, it is imperative that they are done well. A large percentage of users find the push notifications annoying and you don’t want to fall amidst that number with constant, compulsive reminders every single day. http://info.localytics.com/blog/the-inside-view-how-consumers-really-feel-about-push-notifications
- What is the truly annoying part of push notifications is that they are mostly impersonal – the same, ill-timed push messages are blasted to all users, damaging even loyal user engagement. http://info.localytics.com/blog/app-stickiness-makes-recovery-but-the-pressure-is-on
- Forrester Research has discovered that 44% of companies disregard their mobile services as simplified versions of their online initiatives. It’s definitely the popular impression of any service app that did not start out as an app or an online venture – the bugs and ineffectiveness have become such a common stereotype that most people don’t even bother to look up the official apps of certain companies. https://www.forrester.com/report/CMOs+Own+Mobile+To+Own+Your+Customers/-/E-RES120363
The microenvironment functions like a fish tank, if properly balanced, all of its occupants will remain happy without the desperate urge to sink to the bottom in defeat, cannibalise each other or defiantly jump out of the enclosure in search of new ventures. All of these extremes are undesirable and it is important to remember that clients have better flexibility, they can jump further and into other companies’ tanks. What you need to avoid is the ‘goldfish memory lapse’, a splatter of gold and shine does not fix a short memory if you neglect to listen to your clients. But even science has proved that this myth is untrue and that goldfish do have extensive memories if sufficiently trained; then how come a vast majority of companies are still stuck in that myth?
Infuriatingly sloppy apps and malfunctioning services are stereotypes associated with most companies that did not initially start out as tech hubs; innovation and use of omni channel approaches is an indispensable step towards keeping the balance in your safe bubble, turning it into a better fish tank than your competitor’s and it’s also a tool to dispel bad stereotypes surrounding your company’s name by avoiding the same mistakes.
Until then, some will remain isolated in a goldfish tank, banging their heads against the crystal clear solutions whilst others will swim along with their clients, co-existing in the same safe bubble.
Don’t be a goldfish. Listen to your clients. Innovate.
This blog column is written by Polina Hristova and is part of ROCCO’s Mobile Engagement Market Intelligence Report, available now.