The VPM Blog

Mobile: It’s more than a Phone

Posted by Don Crow on Oct 29, 2012 1:10:41 PM

Here’s the scene: you are a ground-breaking maverick who bets smart and wins big. Your latest bet 12 months ago was a slick mobile app for both the iPhone and Android crowds. Sales are up, customer satisfaction is at unprecedented highs and your PR/Social/Marketing team has stopped asking for more money.

Pinch yourself.

And then keep reading because mobile apps are so… 2012.

Mobile has always been about more than just the phones we are married to now. To me, mobile has always been about helping people get more out of their increasingly busy, wired & unwired, connected and data saturated days – while they’re out and about. Sure, the easy approach is to think about an application or technology that makes your phone or tablet even cooler (and productive).

But mobile is so much more!

And here’s one reason why: Google’s Project Glass. Forget for a moment the $1500 price tag. Forget too the lack of details on what Project Glass will actually do.

Focus instead on what this does to markets and what could be done to markets.

Consider a buyer walking into a meeting with your sales team with real time data streaming for only them to see. What about a customer walking into your store and having real time access to sales, sizes, colors and unlimited options available as they just strolled through the aisles.

Or, on a more tactical level, imagine having real time data available on that attractive young lady at the bar you just focused your eyes “Google glasses” firmly upon.

Because I built Verge Pipe Media on making Imagination a customer multiplier, walk with me (glasses optional) as we explore some opportunities with ‘mobile’ being more than your tablet and phone...

  • Scenario #1: Our sales team (see above) is sitting across the table from a buyer they’ve been courting for months. While the sales folks are yammering away, our buyer is recording everything and in the background comparing notes via full-text search because algorithms have converted speech to text. From all your previous meetings. He’s also getting live updates on competitor product and pricing as you speak because they’ve all opted in to providing streaming quotes on availability, shipping and yes, price that accounts for conditions at manufacturing locations to name a few. Does this scenario put any pressure on your current models?
  • Scenario #2: You’ve decided to remove the front doors to your business because now the walk-in traffic is so intense, you were replacing door hinges and sliders monthly. People no longer “google” you before they walk in. They don’t care about directory service on their old iPhones. No, they prefer a personal heads up display device with apps which have made it easier to just walk in to a place, look around and almost have their shopping decisions made for them. Tomorrow’s consumers have opted-in to receive your coupons and price match offers when they’re in your store only. Once they’re out? Your offers are gone. Better bring your best point of sale game every single day! And oh by the way – Verge Pipe Media created a really cool social game for these same displays so consumers want to look at a piece of clothing, see an image of them wearing it, and publish it to their social feeds instantly for friend reviews. The points they earn translate to coupons they can use with participating businesses.
  • Scenario #3 (just for fun): And finally, who hasn’t complained about beer goggles?! Imagine having your heads up display judge facial features, body language and even analyze drink choices and clothing to help you in any state of mind make a better relationship choice? Or, even if you could just look at a person and have their social networks displayed along with any mutual friends or “Likes”? Talk about having an instant ice breaker! Oh wait… she just Project Glass’d you back and was not amused by your profile picture at Saturday’s after-game party.

So – bask in the glory of your mobile enabled website, native app or html5 presence while you can. Mobile, mobility, and overlaying bits of info as you interact with the real world is a much better experience than staring and swiping at a small screen and missing human interaction in the process.

True, we should continue to show love to mobile app development – they’re not going any place soon (unless they get linked to a personal display device), and you should absolutely continue to invest in smart technologies, ideas and messages that put your brand experience in the palm of customer’s hands. But, you should also be re-imagining your entire business to support what all this mobility and data gives customers and your competitors.

BTW, the ideas I’ve shared above are wide open. We’ll put our Android developers to work on whichever one(s) your business wants!


Author: is Founder & CEO at Verge Pipe Media. Verge Pipe Media assists public institutions, enterprises and the non-profit sector with Imaginative Inbound Marketing strategies + campaigns. We also have a development team chock full of Marvelous Mobile Migrators, poised to help transition our clients into a mobile + social world with custom software, iOS and Android mobile apps.

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