Holiday Gift of Brands Doing Mobile Right

Episode #007: Stephanie Cox, VP of Marketing at Lumavate

Episode Information

To celebrate the holiday, we’ve decided to shake things up! In our seventh episode of Mobile Matters, Stephanie is sharing her top five brands who are doing mobile right and truly taking mobile to the next level. Find out what you can learn from each of these best-in-class examples. Happy Holidays!

Stephanie's Strong Opinions

  1. All of us crave innovation in our mobile efforts, but sometimes we overthink what it means to be innovative. We should be focused on how we enable our brand to do something that hasn’t been done before.
  2. Don’t try to boil the ocean with your native mobile app or website. Sometimes less is more.
  3. Creativity still matters! If you want to generate buzz with your campaign and drive results, then you need to spend time on the creative aspect of the campaign.

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Stephanie Cox: I’m Stephanie Cox and this is Mobile Matters.

Today I'm shaking things up a bit for our Christmas Eve episode and giving you the gift of brands that I think are truly taking mobile to the next level. So grab some holiday cookies and hot chocolate and settle in for my first hot takes episode.

First up is Domino's in their Hot Spots program that launched in April. Basically making it possible to have pizza delivered to mobile locations for the first time. Think about that for a second. You can finally have your pizza delivered to the park where you are having a birthday party for your kids or at the beach. This online only program allows customers to make prepaid orders on the Domino's website or native mobile app, and then receive text alerts about the order status. It truly makes the pizza ordering and delivery process mobile for the first time. With more than 200,000 hot spots across the U.S., Domino's is definitely setting the bar for other pizza companies.

My next favorite brand completely rocking it on mobile is one of my personal favorites. I'm a huge fan of all things Disney, especially Walt Disney World and Disney Cruise Line. Disney gets a ton of Buzz and praise for their My Disney Experience app that provides an interactive mobile component to your park visit and ties in with one of my favorite things, the magic band. But their Shops Disney Park app is probably my favorite Disney app right now for a very personal reason. So earlier this year my niece shared that she really really wanted a rose gold Disney backpack and wallet for Christmas. Of course, it's only available in the Parks, but she knew that given my love for Disney, I probably would end up there sometime later this year. Of course. She was right. I happen to be going to Disney World, the resort area at least before my fall break Disney cruise, but I wasn't actually ever plan on going into the parks. So if you're not a Disney fan, you probably don't know that the rose gold pandemonium is real and anytime they drop a rose gold product, it sells out almost instantaneously. And so when it does sell out, it becomes a fixture on eBay for five to ten times the actual price of it. But I was determined to make my niece's Christmas wish come true and not pay eBay prices. So I started checking the Disney Parks shopping app on a regular basis to see where I could find this rose gold backpack. And so I noticed that some days it was sold out and then randomly popup at one location in the morning and then immediately sell out usually halfway through the afternoon. So this constant stalking also really ended up paying off for me. When I arrived in Orlando on a Friday, the Shop Disney Park app told me there was not a backpack available anywhere. But I tried again first thing on Saturday morning and low and behold there was some showing up at Disney Springs. So right when that store opened on my way to the cruise terminal I was able to pick it up. This made it easy for me to be able to find exactly what I needed without having to wade through any other information about the parks. It was only about finding merchandise in various resort locations, and it hopefully will win me major bonus points from my niece when she unwraps it this holiday season.

Another brand leading the pack on mobile is Starbucks. If you're a Starbucks loyalist, then you're likely very familiar with our mobile efforts, but did you know that there were the main leaders of progressive web apps, or PWAs for short. Starbucks launched their PWA beta version late in 2017, and has continued that momentum throughout this whole entire year with their director product engineering, David Burnell presenting at Chrome Dev Summit a few months ago to share the details about how they built their PWA and the results they’ve seen. For example, their PWA is 2 times faster than web pages it replaced, and it's offering offline functionality. Did I also mention that their native mobile app is 146 megabytes of approximately and their PWA is 600 kilobytes. That’s more .4% of the Native mobile app size and is basically the same thing. It's also really helped push Starbucks rewards registration and they’ve seen a 65% increase in those thanks to their PWA.

Now let’s talk about Nike. They're really the epitome of innovation from a mobile marketing perspective and 2018 was a big year for them. They started off the wear by becoming the first brand to sell a product digitally through Snapchat by providing attendees of their NBA All-Star Game Party the ability to scan a QR code to open up Snapchat, buy a pair of Air Jordan sneakers before the shoes even hit stores. These shoes sold out in 23 minutes using this approach. They also incorporated near field communication, or NFC tags, on all of their jerseys to activate player specific mobile experiences. And then recently they opened up two concept stores that rely entirely on mobile to create a super personalized experience for shoppers that lets them reserves their shoe sizes via mobile, access selected styles from a locker that they also can unlock with their mobile device, and then be able to pay via mobile and tie it to their Nike+ account. Talk about taking mobile to the next level from an in-store experience and creating a wow moment.

And now for the most brilliant mobile marketing campaign of a holiday season, that goes to Burger King. I cannot fan girl enough about what they recently did to drive adoption and engagement of their native mobile app, and at the same time basically troll McDonald's. The promotion ran for a limited time in early December, and allowed anyone with a Burger King native mobile app to order a Whopper for a penny if they are within 600 feet of McDonald's. Within days after launching a promotion the app was downloaded more than a million times. That's a huge amount of downloads in a very short period of time. And it briefly hit the number one spot on iTunes. Not to mention all the press the campaign created. It's been covered by Mobile Marketer, Ad Week, AdAge, CNN and more. So kudos to the Burger King marketing team on an extremely creative way to drive buzz around the holidays, and mobile engagement!

There's so much we can learn from these brands that can really help transform how you think about mobile marketing. Let's dive into my top three takeaways.

First, the brands have a major Impact with their mobile efforts are doing so because they do something Innovative. And it's innovative because no one else has done it before. Take a look at Domino's. Is having pizza at a picnic in the park or really innovative? No. People have been ordering pizza and taking it to the park to have picnics for years, but having a pizza actually delivered to the park so you don't have to go pick it up first? That's a different story. And it's something that no one else is doing. We have to remember that innovation doesn't have to be groundbreaking technology. Sometimes it's just about figuring out how to improve the customer experience in a way that no one else has tried yet

Next, don't try to boil the ocean with your native mobile app. We’ve all been there. We've all done it. But we've got to stop cramming more and more into our app, and take a step back and ask if it really makes sense to include a specific feature in the app, or website, at all. What Disney has done with their Shop Disney Parks app is a great example of making the distinct choice not simply to include this functionality in the My Disney Experience app. Which they could have done, but instead they created a stand alone experience that’s only tied to shopping in the park. It’s even different than their overall Disney Shop app. This helps declutter the experience for all three, and makes a simple point solution for the park shopping experience.

Finally creativity still matters. At the root of it, the Burger King Mobile promotion with simply another mobile marketing campaign designed to drive app downloads and sales, and we’ve  all seen those before. But what made it so unique, and generated so much buzz, and drove such great results was the creativity of how they implemented it by tying it to their biggest rival McDonald's. So when you're working on your next mobile campaign, don't forget about the importance of creativity to really make an impact and stand out in a crowded marketplace.

Now for my mobile marketing challenge for the week, binge on holiday cookies and hot chocolate and don't forget to spend some much-needed time with your family. No matter how successful your mobile marketing efforts are, it pales in comparison to what truly matters, your loved ones. Happy holidays!

I’m Stephanie Cox and you've been listening to Mobile Matters. If you haven't yet be sure to subscribe rate and review this podcast. Until then be sure to visit and subscribe to get more access to thought leaders, best practices, and all things mobile.

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