Live from #ECSUSA: Eli Weiss of B&H on contextual mCommerce

In Customer Engagement, Customer Experience, Events, In-Store technology, Loyalty & CRM, Regional, Social media, Technology, The Mobile Customer by Freya Smale

Contextual technology: the whys and hows of the retail Context

Eli Weiss, Chief Mobile Strategist, B&H Photo Video

10 years ago: nobody has an app. B&H Photo Video were one of the first.

These days, a mobile presence is a necessity. Consumer trends say: the consumer is always connected.

22% of customers say they will use their phone to research a product in-store
87% millenials do not separate from their phone
67% of email users access them on their phone
88% will do something on their phone as they watch TV

What context really means in commerce and mobile technology boils down to time, place, message, delivery method, location, loyalty programs, purchase history, Public APIs.

Marketers have to know when to engage, and how to engage. Push notifications and location tracking can be valuable, but its very important to gauge when to send so as to not intrude or alienate potential customers.

There is also an idea that “The younger a customer is, the shorter the message has to be to engage”, and B&H has found some truth to that through testing. The shorter the message, the higher the engagement rates.

Some best practices for mobile commerce that will keep your customers happy and loyal are:
1. It’s all about a value exchange: to gain a customer’s trust, you have to show that you are knowledgable and provide value. The push is not about marketing products, it’s about educating and assisting a customer’s particular need.

Example: a 42 year old photographer has no need for notifications about video games or musical instruments. Only send him push for the things he has previously purchased or opts into.

2. Adapt to every platform: a customer that uses a PC, a Mac, an iPhone, or Android, they are all different. Different customers need different experiences to get the maximal results.

3. Push is not about just transactions, it’s about education and timing: you have to understand that every time you push, you run the risk of losing hard-earned followers. 37% of customers opt out of push notifications on mobile for retail apps.