An App is Not a Strategy

Adam Bookman | July 16, 2012 | Mobile Strategy

This is the first in a series entitled the “Top 10 Considerations for your Enterprise Mobile Strategy”. These represent the Propelics perspective on the major components, issues, gotchas, and suggestions we share with our clients and prospects on a daily basis as they strive to define and implement successful mobile strategies. The disruptive nature of mobile in the enterprise has left many organizations scrambling to come up with both a business and technical mobile strategy and roadmap. These 10 considerations will shed some light, provide food for thought, and hopefully steer you in the right direction. If you’d like to receive the remainder of the considerations, please sign up using the form on the left and we’ll alert you as they are released.

Our first consideration is “An app is not a strategy”.

An App is Not a Strategy

Just because you have one app idea, that doesn’t mean you have a strategy. Or, if you’re a little ahead of the curve and have already released one app, that doesn’t mean you have a strategy either. Many companies are racing to release an app, often a customer based app store app. There’s absolutely nothing inherently wrong with this approach. Getting going quickly with mobile is a positive. However, somewhat surprisingly, many companies release their first app and then stop. As if they are done with mobile, can check the box, and then move on to other things.
Enterprise Mobile Considerations - An App is Not a Strategy
But mobile isn’t going away. Gartner has predicted that by 2015, 70% of your customer interactions will originate from a mobile device. And whether this is completely accurate or a little bit overstated, we’re strong believers that directionally it is an important statistic that seems to be playing out in the marketplace. It’s not only your customers who are interacting more with mobile. So are your employees, partners, distributers, suppliers, sales teams, etc. Figuring out how to address the mobile needs of all of these constituents is becoming essential. Not just for the sake of having more mobile apps, but because mobile is central to your overall company strategy (If it isn’t yet, that’s ok, but it should be moving in that direction).

To make this happen, you need a strategy, not just an app. It is important to define what you are hoping to achieve with mobile. Is it to increase revenue, shorten sales cycles, improve the customer experience, make your employees more productive? Could be all of the above. That’s a good thing. Defining your mobile vision and business drivers will lead you and your team to many app ideas. It’s great when this happens, when the mobile juices start flowing and the flood gates open. It is at this point where it is especially critical to have a strategy. You need to be able to know if the ideas that are being generated are good ones. And when 10, or 50 more ideas are generated, to have a way to prioritize them. Which ones fit into your mobile strategy and roadmap? Which apps should be developed? In what order? For what devices?

[quote_right]Mobile is being used as a way to change customer interactions, it allows for new business models, and is quickly becoming a key tool to create a competitive advantage.[/quote_right]

There is significant value is defining a mobile app strategy. We recommend to our clients that they prioritize their app ideas through certain filters, one being business benefit. Will releasing this app help you achieve one of your goals? Keep in mind, while brainstorming around mobility is a wonderful exercise, the truth is, not all ideas are good ideas. Make sure you have a process in place to find the good ones.

If you haven’t already, now is the time to define your company’s mobile strategy.

If you liked this tip, and want to receive our 9 others in the “Top 10 Considerations for your Enterprise Mobile Strategy”, sign up using the form on the left and we’ll alert you as they are released.

Adam Bookman

Adam has been the brains behind many new product and program launches. He has advised companies on marketing strategies associated with new ideas, as well as worked with Fortune 500 companies in various capacities. Being a savvy marketer, with the ability to jump on new trends, he has helped companies make the most of new channels to reach the right audience. Previously, he has been involved in companies from a founding stage to successful exits. Adam can be reached at adam.bookman@propelics.com or on twitter at @adambookman.

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