It’s the End of the Mall as We Know It and I Feel Fine

Last week I had the pleasure of interviewing Gary Schwartz, CEO of Impact Mobile, and author of the recently published “The Impulse Economy”.  In it, he discusses the impact of the mobile revolution on traditional retail.

Click here to listen to the podcast (Length –  22 minutes and 54 seconds of wholesome goodness).

The Impulse Economy – Click here for your copy

“We live in a world where our mobile devices have become extensions of ourselves. We depend on them for instant connections to entertainment, social media, news, and deals. The phone has become our ticket, loyalty card, and catchall wallet. Networks are faster, phones are smarter, and the mobile shopper is ready to spend money now. What can a business do to maximize the mobile buying power of the new impulse consumer?”

Go Mobile or Go Home

A recent study covered by the tech site Mashable indicates that consumers are now spending more time on mobile apps than the Web. In June, consumers spent 81 minutes per day using mobile apps, compared to 74 minutes of Web surfing (see chart below).   This change in user behaviour is further confirmed by a recent report by Mary Meeker, a partner at the legendary venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, which found that for the first time combined tablet and smartphone shipments eclipsed those of desktops and notebooks.  All this data also backs Wired Magazines’ article last year “The Web is Dead”, which predicted that apps would soon overtake the Web.

What does that mean for your company? If you’ve developed and implemented a mobile strategy, you are well positioned to benefit from this coming shift.  If you have started to give some thought  to this and you move the process into high gear, you should be OK as well.  If you’ve done neither, you better drop everything else and make this your top priority.  Now.

Will mobile rule everything? No.  But a significant segment of your current audience and your future one will spend an increasing amount of their time on their mobile devices.  The question all companies have to answer is whether not they will be able to serve and create value on the devices and media on which their customers choose to spend their time.

You can find a links to the reports mentioned above here:
Mobile Apps Put the Web in Their Rear-view Mirror
Top 10 Mobile Internet Trends



What’s up Tweety Bird?

Twitter, Twitter, Twitter.  That’s all I seem to be hearing these days.  Granted, when your user base is growing at the pace of 300,000 accounts everyday (over 105 million users to date), you are bound to garner some attention. Just to put it in context, 4 billion tweets were posted on Twitter  in the first quarter of 2010.  That’s a lot of conversations.

I must admit that I was not an immediate Twitter convert.  For some reason, I really did not feel the need to know, in 140 characters bursts, what someone had for breakfast or dinner.  Fortunately, I regularly speak to people who are much wiser then me, and as a result have become a convert.

Due to the inordinate number of questions I get from clients about Twitter and its application to business, I am going to do two things.  First, I’m hosting a Webcast in the next few weeks to answer your questions. Second, my next few posts will highlight some powerful Twitter apps and their business utility.  The first one is TweetBeep (  It is very similar to Google Alerts but instead of searching the Web, it focuses on the Twitterverse.  Once you register (free) you are asked to create a set of key words or phrases.  Anytime these appear in a publicly available Twitter conversation (most are), you will receive an email alert.

How is this useful, you might ask?  It can give you a head’s up on tweets mentioning your products, services, customer service or other facets of your business.  When the chatter is positive, you may have yourself some champions.  When, on the other hand, the tweets are negative, it enables you to very quickly address whatever the issues may be. Finding out about negative comments right away, as opposed to waiting until they wind their way through the Web, can save time, money and brand equity (what old fashioned marketers call reputation).  Try it out and let me know what you think by posting a comment.

LinkedIn- You’ve come a long way baby!

Founded in 2002 by Reid Hoffman, and launched in 2003, LinkedIn ( has become the dominant Web-based professional networking platform.  I’ve been using it and have encouraged clients to do so for some time now.  As good as LinkedIn is, it did stumble somewhat by not embracing social media tools and networks fast enough.

This all changed over the last year or so with the integration of a number of social media capabilities into the LinkedIn platform.  In my view, these are the most important ones:

1.  Twitter ( – you can now have your Twitter feed automatically appear in your LinkedIn profile as soon as you’ve tweeted

2. Blogging – your blog posts now also get uploaded onto your profile right after they are posted on your blog (this feature is available for a number of blogging platforms, including WordPress and TypePad)

3. Slideshare ( – any voice-enabled PowerPoint presentations you’ve uploaded to to SildeShare now appear in your profile as well

These changes are important for a number of reasons.  First, they expose more of your brand and content to your LinkedIn professional network.  These contacts can now see your tweets and blog posts without having to go elsewhere.  Second, they save you a ton of time in that you no longer have to update your LinkedIn profile with content you’ve created elsewhere. Last, by making sure it embraces social media, LinkedIn is taking steps to stay relevant and, in the process, protect the myriad of hours its members have spent in building their profiles and extending their networks.

This app is better than ice cream

Most of the apps on my iPhone were downloaded by my kids, so I don’t often use them (unless a meeting is really unproductive …).  There are, however, more and more business apps being released that have real value to corporate marketing efforts.  One of our clients’ greatest challenges is continuously producing fresh content for their Web site, intranets, blogs and other social media efforts.  Although more of them are starting to take advantage of the corporate blogging services we (and others) offer, the search for fresh content is constantly on.  

In the social media space, video has become an effective, engaging, and low cost form of content (read my blog on video blogging here).  One app that makes the creation and deployment of video content easy is iVideo. If you have a 3GS iPhone, you have video built in.  If you have a 3G iPhone, the iVideo app will turn it into video camera. The truly cool and powerful function in iVideo (whichever phone you use) is its ability to share video content with numerous social networking sites at the click of a button. Any video you shoot, be it at a trade show or product demo, can be immediately uploaded to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, and other sites. All you need to do is click the share button, pick the social network of your choice, and in a matter of minutes your content is before a global audience.

The grand cost of iVideo Camera in the iPhone app store –  I picked it up for $0.99 (it’s not a typo). You can read more about it here: