Mobile - The Perfect Contradiction

Posted by Nigel Shanahan

September 1, 2014


mobile-the-perfect-contradiction2Life is becoming full of contradictions. Just look at the way we use our mobile phones. For many of us they have become one of our primary tools for both killing and saving time. It might sound strange, but just look around you... 

Everywhere you go there are people using their mobile phones, whether they're waiting for buses or trains, or just for their wife to come out of a shop. Playing games, sending a funny Snapchat to a mate, looking up the weather in a far off place or just checking the Daily Mail app to see if Manchester United have bought anyone decent yet (oops, just me then?). Everyone's just chilling, or better stated, killing time.

On the other hand, our mobile is used for speed and making sure we get things done as quickly as we can….so we can go back to chilling. We as humans want to have fun, be entertained, and get the boring ‘stuff’ which keeps our lives on track – bills paid, appointments attended, banks contacted, clothes returned, reservations made….done in as quick a way as possible.

Our mobiles are the one item we have with us 24/7, they're so precious that we sweat about it all day if we leave them at home. The beauty for us as consumers now, is that if dealing with companies isn't easy or if the service isn’t up to scratch, we can use our mobile to look for someone better…and then use social media to tell our mates. Perfect for me. Scary for the companies I deal with. Forrester says it’s the age of the consumer. We are supposedly ‘all powerful’ - I absolutely agree.

But what does this mean for those companies that serve us? Be on your toes? Yes of course. Give it to me simple? Totally. Make it easy for me to work with you, don’t make me work too hard to order something, get information, have something delivered, query a problem, get an update about a process, get an engineer to me……the list goes on. The same can be said of my thoughts in my Moments of Truth straight after dealing with these companies. Whether it’s my local bank or my favourite restaurant, ask me to take a survey, or go home and fill in questions on your website, and it’s a no from me. Ask me there and then, in real-time and make it easy peasy, I’m all yours. I'll happily tell you my experience in my own words, and I'll happily rant or rave about the people, products and processes. 30 seconds, done and dusted, easy.

We are not lazy, we are just busy. If we receive timely, relevant communications from these companies that remind us, prompt us, cajole us, and make it easy for us to do business with them, we rave. If the mobile phone is the device of choice to connect us consumers with brands and companies, then for me, SMS is the magic glue that cements us together. It’s easy, cheap, quick, universally accepted and discreet. I would go as far as to say it’s the most ubiquitous and powerful non-verbal communication medium in the history of mankind. We look at our mobile 150 times a day, once every 6.5 minutes. The open rate for text messages is 98% (compared to 22% for email) and the average message is read within 3 minutes of receipt. The average response rate to businesses is 26%, compared with 5% for email.

The message to companies? We love SMS, because its fast and easy. And today it's even better, with texts containing links through to see more information or leave more information, now that makes my life easier. If I want to make my delivery date tomorrow, I can click the link, change the date, Bob’s your uncle, time saved. So I can go back to chilling/killing time…wow the Daily Mail app says we have agreed terms to buy Di Maria from Real Madrid, marvellous!

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Topics: Mobile Communication, Mobile Customer Feedback

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