November 28, 2011

Are Mobile Consumers Better Informed than Salespeople?

By Michael de Souza, VP Media

An editor of Harvard Magazine recently wrote about consumers who are taking on (willingly or not) the roles of petrol attendants, check out clerks and sales assistants. Go to a supermarket in the US, and you're likely to scan your own purchase. Drive into a petrol station, pump your own gasoline and squeegee the windshield yourself.

“The robots have won,” writes Craig Lambert. “Although the automatons were supposedly going to free people by taking on life’s menial, repetitive tasks, frequently, technological innovation actually offloads such jobs onto human beings."

It's not all bad news, though. When it comes to purchase decisions, consumers are winning. The average shopper has become adept at product research - checking product information and comparing prices on the spot.  Even in situations where a salesperson is available, consumers have a bigger view that includes options in other stores and online.

The self-service phenomenon may be charmless, but in this case, mobile technology is empowering consumers with information . . . and offering new opportunities to retailers and publishers.

November 18, 2011

New Mobile Regulations in Indonesia Pave the Way for M-Commerce Growth

By K.F. Lai, BuzzCity CEO

The government of Indonesia has effectively 'reset' the mobile subscriptions market. It shut down all mobile subscriptions in mid-October and required content providers who wish to resubscribe their users to do so in compliance with tougher rules.

Consumer agencies have been pushing for this action against a small minority of mobile advertisers whose fraudulent actions tarnished the whole industry, for some time.

The result is good news for the whole industry (well, everyone except those fraudsters) and it took place not a moment too late. Regulators around the world are starting to recognise the importance of their role in protecting the value chain. By re-establishing much-needed trust between businesses and consumers, this paves the way for the emergence of solid m-commerce markets.

November 04, 2011

Ad networks: the scale and insight to beat fragmentation

The past few years have shown remarkable growth of the mobile internet, driven by rapid consumer adoption and major advances in the capabilities of mobile devices. In recent months, mobile ad networks received a great vote of confidence from investors, who bet substantial sums that the space will continue growing, become more valuable, and attract an increasing share of marketing budgets.

In spite of this, though, some naysayers still question the value of ad networks. They believe that marketers are still treating mobile as an afterthought, and they question the quality of network traffic.