About Benjamin Blachère

French Online Marketer previously based in Sydney. Launched a Web Marketing Agency in Paris, SLAP digital where we help our clients to increase their traffic, the size of their membership databases as well as their revenues. Passionate about web marketing, I have previously launched my own website, a community for people in Long Distance Relationships.

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  • Trends / Insights
  • Mobile


    The Mobile OS market of the future

    Interesting article from Business Insider.

    The smartphone wars could look a lot different soon if giants Research In Motion and Nokia align themselves with new platforms.
    Nokia is reportedly considering aligning with Microsoft’s new Windows Phone 7, which would be a HUGE win for Microsoft. Windows Phone 7 got good reviews from critics, but has not been a big commercial hit. Support from Nokia could be very helpful.

    Meanwhile, Research In Motion is in the process of moving to a new BlackBerry platform called QNX, which can reportedly run Google Android apps. If the BlackBerry PlayBook and forthcoming BlackBerry smartphones can run Android apps, that could be a big boost for Google’s mobile platform.

    Here’s a chart of last quarter’s mobile smartphone market shares (left) and a hypothetical chart (right) of what the new alliances might look like, all else being equal.


    How to define your Mobile Strategy

    You know you need to be present on mobile phones, but you are overwhelmed by all the options and need to make sure that you maximise your ROI.

    Here is how I would go about defining a mobile strategy for a company:

    Detailed analysis of your industry, competition, audience.

    Like any project, it is essential to first understand who your audience is, how they interact with mobile phones and internet in general as well as what the competitive landscape is.

    • Who is your target audience?

    • What’s their mobile phone usage?

    • Who are your competitors?

    Assessment of what technology is appropriate for your project.

    Making the right technical choices can make or break a mobile venture. You not only need to think about current usage and technologies but also trends of what’s to come.

    • What’s your current IT architecture? What technology should you consider?

    • Do you need an application or a mobile site? • What should your application do?

    • Should you limit yourself to one handset?

    Development of a marketing strategy.

    Implementing the appropriate marketing strategy to complement the portal strategy is essential.

    • How mobile devices fit into the overall business strategy?

    • Should you charge for it? If so how much? Should you display ads? • What will make your application/site unique?

    • Integration of application and mobile web solutions

    • How your mobile presence will fit with broader strategic marketing objectives?

    • Integration into both above and below the line marketing activities

    • Where and how it should be promoted?

    • Expected ROI

    • What are the emerging market trends to consider?

    Answering this list of question will take some time, but will definitely be worth it long term. Now the next steps are to define a budget and find the right partners to make sure your project is delivered successfully.

    Have I missed anything? Please let me know.


    Google Mobile Revenues

    Google, the company that is so often blamed for ‘doing evil’ and trying to get ad revenues from pretty much any of its users’ behaviours, seems to be actually missing out on revenues on Mobile phones.

    On the web, when you do a Google search, depending on the keyword you typed in, you might see 3 ads appear on top and up to 8 ads on the side or a total of 11 opportunities for clicks and therefore revenue for Google.

    However if you do a search for the same keyword from your mobile phone, which is happening more and more often and is expected to take over desktop web use within 4 years, whereas directly from the browser or using Google’s app, you will only see a maximum of 2 ads on top and 3 ads at the bottom…way below the related links so it is highly unlikely that anyone will click on it.

    See the below screenshots for searches performed on a desktop and a mobile for the highly competitive keyword ‘buy a car’.

    Screenshot Google Web Search

    Google Web Search Results with 11 ads placement

    Google Mobile Search Results Top

    Google Mobile Search Results Top with 2 ad placements

    Google Mobile Search Results bottom

    Google Mobile Search Results bottom with 3 ad placements

    I understand that Google’s focus is to offer the best experience and most relevant result to its user, and by forcing people to go through more than 2 ads on their much smaller mobile phone screen they might not achieve this and risk alienating their users.

    I also appreciate that the CTR on mobile ads might be better than on the web (6% – 8% better according to this article about Google Mobile on Mashable) but surely they must be working on some form of alternative revenue as Google Adwords is the main source of revenue for the business and they wouldn’t want to see this revenue divided by 2 once most people will have given up their desktop computer.

    Will follow this closely.


    How to promote your Mobile Application

    You are ready, you love your mobile application or mobile website, feedback from users is great, however there are not a whole lot of them at the moment and you would like this to change…

    Welcome to a mobile application world which has grown from a few thousands a couple of years back to over 200,000 in the iPhone Appstore and over 70,000 on the Android marketplace.

    So how can you get more people to download your app?

    There are obviously advertising options, however I will focus this post on free, SEO like, tips that will help you not only rank better within the marketplace itself (and for longer) but also create some buzz online about your app.

    On-Marketplace recommendations:
    •    Do an extensive Keywords research and use what you come up with in the App title and description text.
    •    App title optimisation – don’t use any weird characters.
    •    Optimize your description text – an old trick used to stuff it with keywords and include other successful app names but Apple is cracking down on this now, so don’t overdo it.
    •    Regular updates and releases – to make sure your app’s name gets back on top of the marketplace charts.
    •    Encourage reviews – again this is taken into account by each marketplace algorythm, and will help maintain your app as high in the rankings as possible.
    •    Make your icon active – highlight any call to action: “Sale”, “Free” etc
    •    Make the most of your screenshots.
    •    Consider Facebook Connect – as your app is then likely to rank when someone searches for facebook (which would be a LOT of people), but might simply help spread the good word about your ad.

    Off-Marketplace recommendations:
    Some of these tactics are pretty similar to traditional online SEO and Social Media strategies.
    •    Create a website or dedicated page to promote your application.
    •    Let your current customers know about your app: newsletter, links on your site, etc.
    •    Get them to link back to your webpage with keyword rich links, through link baiting competitions for example.
    •    Promote you applications within your other applications (if you have any!).
    •    PR releases.
    •    Add sharing functionalities in your app.
    •    Alert relevant communities – there are plenty of forums and website dedicated to the latest iPhone apps for example.

    All of these combined will help give your app more exposure and longevity. And to really have a winning strategy, you need to ensure that you capture this initial audience and get them to use your app.

    I would be really interested to head about any other suggestions!


    aka-aki and how this could revolutionise dating!

    I heard about aka-aki for the first time last week.
    It’s a new german mobile application that aims at connecting you with your network of friends while on the go. So what does it mean exactly: “as soon as another member is near you, aka-aki shows you common friends and interests on your mobile display”

    This is a very appealing concept, the idea of no more missed opportunities to catch up with a friend who you haven’t seen in a while but might actually be in the same bus as you!

    Is it safe?

    There is obviously a privacy concern, with the risks of stalking, or for people around you to know all about your interests, however I believe (and will need to check my facts) that only your friends and friends of friends can see you (but nothing prevents one of them to be the stalker…). Anyway i am still really excited about this development.

    Meeting or Avoiding?
    Taking it one step further, I see this application as a great way not to meet people you want to avoid :)

    Facilitating or Complicating?
    Also what if you blocked someone (like in the good old days of MSN messenger) who knows that you have Aki-Aka and see you in the street? This might create a new set of issues!

    How this could revolutionise dating
    No, seriously I gave some thoughts to this over the weekend, this could become something huge in terms of dating. Imagine if you could enter the description of the person you are looking for and that your phone would bip if another phone with the corresponding description AND looking for someone like you! I know that a japanese device (the likes of Tamagotchi) tried to do this about 10years ago…

    Anyway food for thoughts, I will keep monitoring this great application.

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