We use our cell phones like they’re providing oxygen. That’s just the reality. That’s where we are as a society, and there’s no shame in it. (There’s a little bit of shame.) According to Marketing Week, the average mobile phone user checks their phone 150 times a day. Also, according to 11Mark, 75% of Americans admit to bringing their phones to the bathroom. (We’re not very well going to live a life devoid of WiFi for the minutes-long sojourn to the restroom. What are we, animals?)
But phones aren’t just for dropping into toilets (which 19% of people do, so be careful out there). They’re also good for making purchase decisions.
We all know that game. We price-check. We peruse reviews before we buy anything. Sometimes we leave empty-handed to buy the product elsewhere. It’s not difficult to see why this makes brands nervous.
But there are a number of reasons why the mobile craze is win-win. For one thing, it gives brands a new forum with which to incentivize their consumers–now they can offer discounts or coupons to people who check in on Foursquare, Facebook, or Yelp. Nice.
For another, it’s a surefire way of getting people to talk about your brand. According to the Event Track Executive Summary, 49% of people text or engage socially about an experiential event that they’ve attended as of 2015, which is a huge jump. In 2014, it was only 7%.
But perhaps most importantly, mobile usage incentivizes brands to be the best they can be. When a competitor’s info is so easily accessible, it behooves brands to make themselves worth someone’s while. And when a consumer chooses you over somebody else, it forges a connection. A bond, if you will. Now, word on the street is that brand loyalty is disappearing, but I would argue that brand loyalty simply isn’t blind. For instance, I don’t buy Sephora products because they’re from Sephora–I buy them because I’ve had consistently good experiences with the brand over the past five years, and you’ll have to pry their True Cream Aqua Bomb moisturizer from my cold, dead fingertips. Maybe that’s just me, but I’m willing to bet it’s not.
So if there’s one thing we’ve learned today, it’s that mobile usage–far from being troublesome–has the potential to benefit everyone. (If there are two things we’ve learned, it’s that, plus the fact that bathrooms and phones shouldn’t mix, but sometimes they do.)