I’m on a bit of a mobile kick as you might have noticed. That’s in part because Mullen has been hard at work getting our own mobile capabilities into high gear and also because we’re in the midst of a really cool project with Google to launch Go Mo, an initiative to get small businesses across America (and eventually the world) to optimize their sites for mobile.
It’s hard to think of anything that isn’t mobile anymore. Search is mobile. It’s pretty frustrating when you’re looking for something from a smartphone and it comes up like this.
Entertainment is mobile. In many cases it provides more options than the alternative. (Note how HBO GO actually trumps HBO On Demand for depth of content and choice.)
Travel is mobile, from booking flights and hotels to checking in. And the list goes on: shopping from mobile sites, making digital payments, executing stock sales and bank transfers, connecting with friends via social media.
More importantly, it’s evident we all have to stop thinking of mobile as its own medium or category. It’s part of everything – in-store, print advertising, physical experiences, customer service, data and analytics. Yet there’s a tendency to treat mobile as an afterthought or at least to develop mobile apps and utility off to the side.
Our program with Google is an attempt to change that. We both believe that given the proliferation of smart phones that everything – from strategy to content — has to start with mobile.
One of the more fun things we’re doing is mobilizing Mobile, Alabama. We thought that helping optimize sites for an entire town’s local businesses would be a great way to demonstrate the value of having a mobile site and the alliteration was too good to pass up. Google will help up to 500 local businesses get optimized for mobile, even hosting the sites free of charge for a full year.
I’m heading to Mobile next Monday to speak at an event encouraging ad agencies to learn, think and create in the mobile space. Jason Spero, Google’s head of Mobile Advertising, will join me. He obviously knows a hell of a lot more than I do about mobile proliferation and consumer trends, but I can share at least a few thoughts on how ad agencies can ready themselves for the biggest shift ever in marketing and engagement.
Oh, and the video below, on how Lulu’s optimized for mobile, was shot by my filmmaker friend Max Esposito.