Mobile: I Do More Than Just Text Message

Mobile technology has transformed the way we communicate and now the way we do business. Sometime last week, I went out for lunch to one of the trucks and instead of having my order placed on paper with a pen the attendant took my order on his iPhone. There was even an option to pay using LevelUp. LevelUp is a Boston based startup that has developed a mobile payment app that works as a QR code on your phone. Many local eateries in Boston have partnered with LevelUp for mobile payments making it even more convenient for customers to make a payment. If there is anything that I must have on me at all times it’s my smart phone (I own a Blackberry… sigh that’s another conversation). The progression of technology and the way we pay for things is changing, and the act of completing mobile payments has finally begun to move from science fiction to reality.

Mobile payments are most mostly by Millenials (18-26/39%) and Generation Xers (27-39/31%) and mobile device users who utilize mobile payments are expected to swell from 6.8% in 2009 to 21.3% in 2012. With each new iPhone and Android released to the market we can expect a new feature. Apple launched the Siri feature with its latest iPhone 4s. Marketers have an opportunity to reach their consumer using mobile technology for more than just SMS targeted campaigns. Quite frankly, I haven’t had any personal interest in SMS campaigns.

While I am very excited about this trend, I cant’ help but worry about security. Not necessarily security from an outside hacker but security after one loses their phone. Most of us can admit to losing a phone at least once and immediately we worry about losing our contacts, pictures, and other downloads. If your phone isn’t locked, could your credit card information be compromised? These are some of the questions that worry consumers.

The trend is still going strong and I expect mobile payments to become the norm, however marketers must educate their consumers in order to shape their perceptions of mobile payments. How are you using mobile in your business or for your clients?

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