Q&A: Making the Most of Mobile CRM

Grow.co, a forum for marketing professionals, hosted a panel debate last month on mobile Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

Barron Ernst, Chief Product Officer at ShowMax, and Eduardo Henrique, Head of Global Expansion at PlayKids, joined mobile marketing professionals to discuss how best to use email, push, and in-app messaging in CRM campaigns.

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Your Mobile Experience Must Be Simple, Regardless of What Country You’re in

According to the GSMA there will be 5.9bn smartphones in circulation by 2020, at which time 69 percent of all mobile connections will be either 3G or 4G. With around 40 percent of all ecommerce transactions already taking place on mobile the implications are clear: to succeed brands must be able to deliver an exceptional mobile experience to their customers.

The key question facing brands is how they can create such enriching mobile experiences. With competitors just a few clicks away and customers more likely to switch brands than ever before, ecommerce and mobile content brands must look to deliver something different; to disrupt and innovate to make their mobile experiences as intuitive as possible for their customers.

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Three Steps to App Success

When it comes to mobile apps, user experience is everything. The most innovative and disruptive business model in the world is still likely to fail if the app strategy is not successful.

Despite this fairly obvious fact, all too often businesses launch apps that do little more than gather digital dust on users’ smartphones before being uninstalled. In fact, while downloads on the App Store and Google Play clock in at an impressive 1,500 per second, most of these are only opened once.

The crucial question facing companies that wish to launch apps is clear: how can I retain users? I’ve found that there are three crucial steps businesses must take to ensure their apps are ‘sticky’ and profitable.

As a quick reference, one of the best reads on this subject is Hooked by Nir Eyal (great summary here).

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Has Email Marketing had its Day?

For anyone working in ecommerce, a recent report by Return Path may make some uncomfortable reading. The company released a new benchmark for email marketing, which found that emails from business marketing companies had the lowest read rate of any sector surveyed (just nine percent, compared to 47 percent for those from utilities).

In today’s multi-channel world, where consumers can be reached in a variety of innovative ways, including in-game advertising, promotions through Shazam and QR codes, it may seem that the humble marketing email has had its day.

The reality is far more complicated.

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Are there different global design trends? Does it impact WeChat, WhatsApp, and Uber?

I’m continuing re-posting and elaborating on my AMA from Growthhackers.com.

This was another great question from Edward Stephens: Do you think international mobile design will pose significant cultural differences e.g. mobile usage in China (WeChat) and do you expect this to homogenise?

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Determining Growth Strategies in Emerging Markets

I’m continuing re-posting and elaborating on my AMA from Growthhackers.com.

This was a great question from Hila Qu: In your current role at Naspers, I imagine you help with growth strategies for multiple products in multiple countries. When you face a unique business in a country you have never worked in, what is your method to find relevant strategies?

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What are Emerging and Declining Engagement Channels? Are They Different in Emerging Markets?

I’m continuing re-posting and elaborating on my AMA from Growthhackers.com.

The question this time was from Sean Ellis, founder and CEO of Growthhackers.com: Given that you have experience across multiple channels (email, mobile, personalization…) I’m curious what you think are the most important emerging and declining channel opportunities these days. For example, would you rather focus on a business where you see substantial growth opportunities in mobile distribution or email distribution (assuming it’s something people want and ultimately end up loving). Any context on why that channel would be appreciated.

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Has Lean Startup Methodology Changed Since I Worked at IMVU?

I recently did an AMA on Growthhackers.com and thought some of the answers were worth sharing as blog posts. I’ll also add a bit of content or elaborate on the answers.

A good question I got from Edward Stephens: How much has the original “lean methodology” implemented at IMVU had to change to keep up with current trends or has it and does it continue to withstand the tests of time?

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Evaluating On-Demand Service Businesses

A couple months ago, I was attempting to understand good retention for an on-demand service business. I was trying to get benchmarks for what good cohort retention rates would look like for businesses such as food delivery, groceries, laundry, and home cleaning. The goal of this post is to summarize my key learnings about how to evaluate on-demand, service based businesses

In my role at Naspers, we help a variety of companies with their core metrics. Having had less experience with on-demand service businesses, my goal was to get benchmarks for what was good and great in the space to help our portfolio companies evaluate their performance.

I ended up learning that the benchmarks are not all that valuable unless you are taking a number of other metrics and variables into account. My key learnings from the knowledgeable experts in the Greylock Partners Growth Community were the following:

  • The cohort curve needs to flatten out at some point. If it continues to decline to 0, that’s much more challenging and a product market-fit question.
  • It’s important that the LTV payback time of the cohort happens relatively quickly and predictably, preferably within the first 6 months
  • The density of the business matters. Oftentimes, the way these sorts of businesses scale is largely dependent on the density of customers and the ability of a single service person to work across multiple customers in a given geography
  • It varies quite widely based on the type of service based business.

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3 Ways Empathy Can Help Your Career

Back when I had a career coach, (her name is Teri Dahlbeck and she’s amazing) one of the most important lessons she taught me was the power of empathy. Like many people, I was fairly young in my career, assumed I was always right, and I would occasionally get into arguments with folks about who was right or wrong about a product feature, metric, business decision, or some other detail. She accurately identified this early on, and we spent a lot of time discussing how empathy can solve many of the problems.

The dictionary definition of empathy is : the feeling that you understand and share another person’s experiences and emotions : the ability to share someone else’s feelings. It seems simple, but the application in the workplace is often fairly complicated.

In this post, I want to cover three areas in my career where empathy has been incredibly helpful:

  1. Defusing conflict with co-workers
  2. Communicating and selling others on priorities (especially when those people don’t report to you)
  3. Having more effective 1:1s and interactions with direct reports

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