Digital Marketing: “Apping It Up”

30-Day Challenge #1

I said I would have my first post in 24 hours, but I couldn’t hold the excitement of my first entry in the 30-day challenge.

While rummaging through my ever-thinking cerebrum for something to write, I found it difficult to focus on just one particular topic. I am interested in a lot of things, so why should I have to limit my posts to just one story or event in the world of high-end goods and services.

I decided to write on themes that are taking place in the luxury and retail space. Today’s theme is a pretty nebulous one: social media and digital marketing in the luxre (a pun resembling the offspring of luxury and retail; and also the name of my club at W&M ) space.

Digital Marketing: Apping It Up

In today’s mobile world mobile apps are highly important to enhancing the overall consumer experience. This presents a lucrative opportunity for upscale brands with loyal clients, who research shows, are adding branded mobile applications to their purchasing toolkit. The Luxury Institute, which conducts research on wealthy consumer behaviors and spending habits estimates that 29% of wealthy consumers are downloading and using luxury branded mobile apps.

Mobile apps are not just effective for making lasting connections to consumers.The rich business analytics data they can provide are also a way to building authentic relationships between brands and customers. As an example, I recently got a call from a Verizon (@verizon) rep to tell me that I was about to go over my monthly limit in calling minutes. At the same time, the very nice rep offered me a chance to upgrade my plan so that I could avoid the $0.45/minute fee for overage minutes. You don’t need to ask what my reply was – I took the offer, which didn’t seem like the “up-sale” it really was.

Imagine a luxury retailer accessing its “rich” data trove to investigate a customer’s spending history and provide them with personalized suggestions on other items they might want to purchase – (Amazon anyone?). Lots of retailers are implementing this in some form. Luxury Daily reported that luxury department store chain Nordstrom recently revealed plans to start using iPod touch devices to quickly and effectively help customers check-out and find products in-store.

When building mobile apps, brands should focus on some core goals:

  • Create a seamless way for consumers to research products and shop;
  • Provide a method for customers to interact with customer representatives (I prefer to call them “brand advocates”); and
  • Provide a means for gathering valuable business intelligence in order to fulfill client needs that clients may not even be aware of.

Once the goals are aligned in a mobile app offering, marketers must be sure that the mobile app meets the minimum requirements of:

  • Having a quick download time;
  • Providing access to brand inventory, including special offers; and
  • Enabling a simple and easy-to-navigate interface.

There might be some aspect of this theme that I’m missing in my post. So feel free to add your “two cents”.

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