Three Tips to Starting a Mobile Movement

The most used mobile services are those that are habitually used to accomplish something or provide entertainment

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A recent report from Tata Communications says 2019 will be an important year for sports, as organizations move deeper into technology to build fan experiences that are more immersive and connected to the mobile-first generation.

It's important to remember that digital technologies are the friend, not the enemy, of the live experience, says Mehul Kapadia, head of Tata Communication's F1 business and its head of marketing, in the report.

This is a good point—companies should embrace tech to enhance live experiences, as technology makes broadcast content much more interactive and engaging. This point extends to any type of experience that is enhanced through mobile technology. It's about engagement and immersion, and not being afraid to enhance daily activities through mobile.

So, how do companies craft mobile-based movements, not just in the sports world but other industries? Here are three tips I have learned along the way.

Find that Niche

The big players have already divided the market. They have the market reach and know the market segments. What they don't have is nimbleness and the ability to cover all of the niches properly. You can fill the gaps in their coverage by tackling a large enough niche that's perfect for your business, but not quite large enough for the giant players. Building a social and mobile-based brand means identifying the right niche and providing users with something exciting.

Finding a niche market is also important for getting trend-setting users on board. These are the mobile users who want to discover the next "cool thing" before their friends. They want to experience it, verify its cool factor, and then recommend it to friends.

That's the trick—finding audiences that want to engage with likeminded people while going exclusively through your mobile platform. Understanding and integrating into a niche means also determining if your app is a free or a paid service. If it's not free, then there better be a long-term value proposition for users to feel like they absolutely need your service. It is important to either cultivate a life-changing platform increasing the audience's willingness to pay for the service, or find other ways to generate revenue.

Evolve and Adapt

Consumers dive into some mobile-first ecosystems because they've discovered experiences that delight them and provide them with rewards. The instant-availability of mobile means everything within the ecosystem moves faster. The hottest apps can turn into legacy forgotten services if they stay stagnant and don't match the experience provided by newer solutions.

It's this dynamic that guarantees mobile services will remain in an ever-accelerating state of evolution. Remember that mobile is now the "first screen" for many people around the globe. It's the entertainment/financial/communication hub. Generation Z barely grew up with TV or a desktop. They only know mobile, so it's important to always remember you're offering your service to a mobile-based audience.

Build your platform with the right structure that makes evolution possible. Use a combination of off-the-shelf technology and open-source tools to avoid the limitations of legacy systems and allow yourself to adapt before the competition. Pay special attention to how information moves around within your solution. It's this part of the design that will allow you to avoid becoming a legacy dinosaur.

And before making changes to your service, remember to check that it's demonstrably better in more than one way from your competitors. Whether it's faster, easier, more rewarding or more engaging, you should identify and exploit that competitive edge. It's not enough to adapt to new market conditions or add some features to your mobile service. You must provide a rewarding experience to users that delights them, but is also simplified by eliminating unnecessary actions.

Ingrain into Habits

The most used mobile services are those that are habitually used to accomplish something or provide entertainment. Uber is a great example. If you are using Uber as your main mode of transport, then you'd have an empty space in your daily routine if it suddenly ceased to exist. You might use Venmo for person-to-person payments or Google Maps for directions. YouTube is used for just about everything, from learning how to hang drywall to playing an obscure clip from your favorite 80's movie.

The most popular services such as Uber are not only ingrained, they are also "self-correcting", meaning you eliminate bad behaviors from the provider (the drivers) by giving them poor rankings. Its setup as a dynamic ecosystem, where behaviors that would seem foreign just a few years ago, has become commonplace. How quickly did "Uber" become a verb? It did this by providing a service in a revolutionary and above all mobile-centric way. When you're considering a social and mobile initiative, think about the power of habit.

The Takeaway

Think about your offering and how it will build new habits or seamlessly integrate with other mobile-based daily activities. At the same time, consider how the market might change and the ways you can setup your mobile solution to rapidly evolve into a "movement" instead of a memory.