Posts by Benjamin Yang

Omnichannel – Your Key to Bringing Your Business to The Next Level

OMNICHANNEL – YOUR KEY TO BRINGING YOUR BUSINESS TO THE NEXT LEVEL
Have you missed the boat?
READ THIS.

I was surprised and overwhelmed by the response I received from my 2 recent posts on the need for businesses to adopt an Omni- Channel approach. Since my first post, more than 20 companies have contacted me requesting advice on how to strategize or embark on this new game changing approach.
While I welcome the response with open arms, there is still something that deeply bothers me. You see, I am greatly concerned by the growing number of SMEs not being aware of this concept. Even worse, it seems that many businesses have been led down the wrong path by many vendors or partners.

THE COMMON PROBLEMS

The most common feedback I hear is this ‘Ben, I invested a lot of money to develop a Mobile App, however, 6 months down the road, my mobile app has given me very little returns’ Another story that pops up frequently; ‘Ben, I did my website revamp and integrated it with a CRM solution. However, my sales appears to be the same as before’. These are the stories that I hear every single week. They are being told that ‘a mobile app is your solution to drive sales’, ‘an e-commerce platform is the answer’, ‘SEO is the thing you should be looking at’. It is interesting that whatever advice they give, seems to coincide with the services they are offering. And this is a shame! Good money has been thrown into the development of these systems that promise much but deliver little.

Let me share with you a simple concept.

Customers are not buying from a mobile app, ecommerce platform or just a physical store. Customers are buying your BRAND that has been communicated across MULTIPLE PLATFORMS!

YOU NEED TO TELL A CONSISTENT STORY

Creating an omni-channel experience is crucial to ensure that you succeed in the marketplace. It is not about choosing one channel over the other. It is about communicating a consistent experience and message across all these platforms. I am not saying that we take the same material and copy and paste it and spam your users. What I am saying is that we need to take the essence of a message and adapt it in a manner that best suits the platform. If needed, you can even deliver different aspects of the story across different platforms to further engage your audience and even increase participation.

A MOBILE STRATEGY IS A GOOD STARTING POINT

Again, let me qualify this statement. If you are going to build a mobile app that just shows your services, your store location, your contact number, don’t waste your money. Go get a Mobile Responsive Website and invest in a good SEO strategy. It will cost you a fraction of the cost. A good mobile application needs to be rooted in utility. You need a good loyalty program strategy. This ensures that you are able to further entrench your customers and immerse them in your brand experience. It is also a good way to get all your existing customers to quickly download your mobile application.

Now, we have a mobile application with a good loyalty program, so what’s next? Consider integration with your POS and CRM. The number one rule in marketing. Drive your decision with DATA. When you integrate all your touch points together, you are able to collect valuable data. You will know every segment of your market and understand what makes them tick. You will know which age groups like which products, you will know which gender responds better to which promotions, you will even know which group of people staying in which areas visit which outlets. And as any business person or marketer knows. Once you can get such information… the battle is half won. From there, it is about optimizing your offerings and products. You will save heaps of marketing costs and instantly get much better ROI.

YOUR MOBILE STRATEGY IS KEY

Take out your phone. Within this device lies all means to contact you (except physically visiting your home or workplace). People can call you, text you, email you, whatsapp. If you have a mobile app, people can send you a push notification. That is why, we need to strategize properly to send the right message, using the right platform, at the right time, telling the right stories, to the right people. That is why data and a mobile strategy goes hand-in-hand.

I know that the tonality of this post is a little on the strong side. But that is because I see so many business owners making the critical mistake of blindly throwing money into technology. Too often, they just blindly follow what their vendors (who are obviously selling their services) ask them to do without having a strategic plan. They end up wasting a lot of time and money but don’t get the results they were promised. This happens in the market all the time… But don’t let that happen to you!

Call us at +65 64382006 or click here for enquiries. if you want to find out more on Omnichannel.

From Fat Wallets to Mobile Apps

Earlier last month I was giving a talk to the Senior Management of a large local SME. The talk revolved around the future of Mobile Technology.

My task for this morning was simple. To help my potential client, convince her boss and her board of directors that Mobile is the way to go and that they need to set aside a budget to invest in their Mobile strategy.

Rather than engaging in the usual spiel of future mobile trends, mobile landscape, etc., I decided to adopt a more intuitive approach.

During the session, I took out my wallet and told the Senior Management that herein lies the future of Mobile Technologies.

CONFUSED? Well, so were they.

You see, people frequently ask me how confident am I that Mobile Apps are not just a passing phase. This again is the wrong approach to take. Mobile Applications is not a question about technology. In fact, Mobile Technology is really about convenience and utility.

Human beings are innovate creatures. We constantly look for shortcuts to do things better and faster. The reason Mobile Apps have taken off, is because they allow people to be more effective and they provide plenty of increased convenience to customers.

A good example is loyalty card program. I am sure many of us have had this experience. We go to a shop or restaurant – make a purchase – we receive a loyalty card – we put it in our wallet – it makes our wallet look fat and ugly – we forget about it – it expires.

Annoying isn’t it? The beauty of a Mobile App, is that it helps to reduce all these inconveniences to the customers. Imagine this scenario. User download your apps – chalks up reward points – there’s no clutter to the wallet – when points are expiring, a notification gets sent to the user – they head down and redeem and probably makes a purchase – Customer Happy, Company Happier.

A BAD EXAMPLE

In Singapore, I see so many Mobile Apps for companies that fail. This is because they don’t approach the Mobile App development from the perspective of convenience to the customer. All they do is to lump everything from their website into their Mobile App. The moment you don’t provide convenience, well you can forget about people downloading your app.

WALLETS WILL GET FLATTER

Let me take out my crystal ball and do a prediction.
The trend for the next 10 years will be this.
Wallets will get flatter.

This is because many of the things found in your wallet can be easily converted into a Mobile App.
And of course, there is an inherent benefit to your customers.
They no longer need to carry heavy wallets full of expired coupons.
More importantly, if designed properly, your Mobile App can even enhanced the whole customer experience and bring out your Brand identity.

WHAT DOES THAT MEAN FOR BUSINESSES?

Well, take out your wallet.
Most of the things within your wallet can be digitized.
That is why you need to position yourself early in Mobile App adoption.
If you can start inculcating in your customers a habit of using your app, the dropout rate would be much lower.

This means that you need to start assessing the viability of a Mobile App loyalty program, mobile commerce, mobile reservation, etc.

Don’t let your competitors get a head start on you. Move fast, move quick, move now!

Feel free to call us at +65 64382006 or simply click here for enquiries.

Benjamin Yang

Managing Director