Does your business need a mobile app?
The growth of mobile technology, with the onset of smart phones and tablets such as the iPad, has resulted in an explosion in the use of applications specifically designed for such devises. “According to a recent Forrester report, 13 percent of information workers currently use smartphones for work at least weekly. The number using smartphones is predicted to escalate rapidly, hitting 34 percent by 2012. Based on the adoption rate, smartphones will reach relatively widespread adoption over the next three-plus years”.
In the business-to-business market, growth this year has been massive. With B2B mobile marketing spend set to quadrupling over the next five years, rising from $26 million in 2009 to $106 million in 2014, according to Forrester Research. As a result, whatever your market sector, if you need to communicate new offers, products and services or increase your sales revenue and build brand loyalty then mobile applications are a key part of your marketing toolbox.
With the current technology you can provide users with a rich experience of your brand, products and services. Updated newsfeeds, video and image graphics are all standard features that can be presented using mobile applications. Focusing on apps that meet a real market need and that are simple in functionality is key to success with mobile apps.
In education, for example, there is the opportunity to provide prospective students with a real feel for the campus and the curriculum. You can deliver rich content that brings your campus to life and provides links to further information contained within your website. As part of an overall online marketing strategy tailored to your target audience there is a real opportunity to get your message and unique offering communicated effectively.
With apps you have the opportunity to be very targeted with the information that you want to get across, as a result your apps can be a real draw and act as a pull to your website. This is particularly the case with very large and content heavy websites such as University and College institutions. But is also as relevant for other public sector bodies such as councils and the NHS.
Whatever your business you should be looking at how getting your content on mobile devises could increase revenue and drive your sales growth.B2B
British Gas – Take a look at this example.
Since August 2010, British businesses have been able to control their energy bills from their mobile devise, as British Gas Business launched the first meter reading application for the iPhone, iPod and iPad.
With a growing number of British Gas Business customers using iPhones, which is currently estimated at over 60,000, the free iPhone app is a quick and convenient way to update gas or electricity meter readings. The meter reading app ensures greater billing accuracy and smarter working by freeing up precious time. Nearly 20% of all calls to British Gas Business are from companies and organisations with meter reading related issues.
This latest development supports the growing numbers of UK businesses using smart phone technology and iPhone business apps to manage their operations. Smartphone adoption in the UK rose 70% to 11.2 million users during the year to January 2010, making the UK the leading European market for smartphone users (ComScore).
British Gas Business was the first energy supplier to develop this latest innovation for the UK business market, following the highly successful launch of the British Gas iPhone app in December 2009 to residential customers – downloaded by over 70,000 people and ranked number eight in The Daily Telegraph’s top saving apps.
Apps in Education
For a good education app see the London College of Communications.