Why Mobile Needs to be at the Forefront of Your Company’s Digital Transformation

It’s not enough just to have a dig­i­tal strat­e­gy any­more. Your com­pa­ny needs to be trans­formed into a dig­i­tal-first organ­i­sa­tion. Com­pa­nies around the world – from For­tune 500 firms down to small fam­i­ly busi­ness­es – are in the midst of mas­sive dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion right now.

Com­pa­nies that are han­dling this dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion well are tak­ing over their mar­kets. Those that adapt too slow­ly are already los­ing mar­ket share to faster, more agile players.

But dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion alone isn’t enough. The trans­for­ma­tion needs to focus on the touch points where the most cus­tomer engage­ment is hap­pen­ing. And in terms of num­bers, mobile is at the fore­front of the customer’s dig­i­tal experience.

And yet, many com­pa­nies – even those that are in the midst of a trans­for­ma­tion to put dig­i­tal first – con­tin­ue to focus on oth­er aspects of the dig­i­tal user expe­ri­ence, like web­sites and in-store dig­i­tal touch points, at the expense of mobile.

This is a major mistake.

At a recent event in Lon­don, Dri­ving Con­tin­u­ous Engage­ment Using Mobile Plat­forms, I spoke with my col­leagues and our part­ner Ensem­ble about the oppor­tu­ni­ties avail­able for mobile opti­mi­sa­tion and how the Nat­ur­al His­to­ry Muse­um (NHM) in Lon­don is build­ing an inter­ac­tive user expe­ri­ence of the muse­um via its new app.

The scale of mobile moments

The num­bers involved with mobile tell a fas­ci­nat­ing sto­ry. As con­sumers, we’re reach­ing for our mobile first and more often. Deloitte Digital’s 2015 Glob­al Mobile Con­sumer Sur­vey found that a full 92 per­cent of users look up prod­ucts and reviews while out shop­ping. Anoth­er 81 per­cent check social media feeds and account bal­ances while eat­ing out. And 89 per­cent at least glance at their mobile devices while relax­ing at the park, watch­ing TV, or spend­ing some oth­er kind of leisure time.

By and large, these cus­tomers aren’t check­ing in on lap­tops. A June 2015 eMar­keter sur­vey found that users spend an aver­age of 37 per­cent of their day with their smart­phones – far more than any oth­er device – and that num­ber has more than quadru­pled over the last five years.

As mar­keters, we need to have a mobile strat­e­gy that encom­pass­es mobile web and apps. A 2015 sur­vey by com­Score found that 72 per­cent of dig­i­tal moments take place on smart­phones – and that a full 65 per­cent of those smart­phone moments hap­pen with­in apps, as opposed to in a browser.

Mobile strat­e­gy for the NHM

The Nat­ur­al His­to­ry Muse­um has recog­nised the need to pri­ori­tise mobile as part of its trans­for­ma­tion. Cur­rent­ly the UK’s third most vis­it­ed attrac­tion and the world’s eleventh most vis­it­ed muse­um, the NHM receives 5.3 mil­lion vis­i­tors annu­al­ly – but more than 10 mil­lion web vis­i­tors in that same peri­od. Most of these vis­i­tors are con­nect­ing via a mobile device.

To cap­i­talise on this, the muse­um has put a vis­i­tor acti­va­tion strat­e­gy in place. This strat­e­gy approach­es mobile as a major entry point to the dig­i­tal fun­nels designed to dri­ve vis­i­tors to oth­er plat­forms and ser­vices. The goal of this strat­e­gy is to “engage with users via their own devices, on tech they understand.”

To realise this strat­e­gy, NHM want­ed a sin­gle plat­form that could pro­vide a mul­ti­chan­nel con­tent man­age­ment sys­tem, the abil­i­ty to cre­ate and pub­lish hybrid apps to reduce devel­op­ment load, and the oppor­tu­ni­ty to min­imise the num­ber of dif­fer­ent plat­forms and data silos nec­es­sary to run the museum’s dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing, per­son­al­i­sa­tion, and test­ing solutions.

Enter AEM Mobile and Ensem­ble. Adobe sup­plied the soft­ware and devel­op­ment sup­port, Ensem­ble designed the expe­ri­ence and devel­oped reusable com­po­nents, and the NHM team han­dled the con­tent devel­op­ment and coor­di­na­tion. Once the design require­ments had been finalised, the build phase of the project took only two months – with two weeks for test­ing and release to the public.

The ini­tial results have been fan­tas­tic. NHM has seen a 50 per­cent devel­op­ment cost sav­ings by reduced depen­den­cy on exter­nal sup­pli­ers. The muse­um has also realised cost sav­ings through bet­ter man­age­ment of trans­la­tions and reuse of tem­plates across the web­site and mobile app, since Adobe Expe­ri­ence Man­ag­er pow­ers both the NHM web­site and app. And NHM has also empow­ered its own staff to man­age, test, and opti­mise the mobile experience.

To learn more about the NHM’s expe­ri­ence with AEM Mobile, you can watch a full pre­sen­ta­tion from the NHM team at our recent cus­tomer Sum­mit event here.

Our strat­e­gy

The NHM expe­ri­ence is a great exam­ple of a mobile trans­for­ma­tion project, sup­port­ed by the Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud solu­tions and a skilled part­ner. In fact, the Adobe Mar­ket­ing Cloud enables mobile-first dig­i­tal trans­for­ma­tion in four ways.

First, we enable the build­ing and man­age­ment of mobile apps. Sec­ond, we stream­line the process by which con­sumers acquire those apps, via the App Store and Play Store. Third, we analyse con­sumers’ usage of those apps, to see where they’re engag­ing and where they’re bounc­ing. And fourth, we enable the engage­ment of those con­sumers with per­son­alised text mes­sag­ing and emails, tar­get­ed Google ads, and loca­tion-spe­cif­ic offers with­in the app. Our ana­lyt­ics on that engage­ment feed back into our next app opti­mi­sa­tion cycle, where the process begins again.

In oth­er words, iter­a­tion is the key to mobile inno­va­tion. To become a mobile-first dig­i­tal com­pa­ny, you need to de-silo your mobile strat­e­gy. Instead of think­ing of mobile as an adver­tis­ing chan­nel, you need to think of it as a cen­tral com­po­nent in all your cus­tomer-fac­ing activ­i­ties, from mar­ket­ing to support.

The lat­est Adobe tech­nolo­gies help you iter­ate over that mobile opti­mi­sa­tion process, so your mobile expe­ri­ence will be adap­tive and engag­ing enough to main­tain your mar­ket share – or, bet­ter yet, keep grow­ing it.