Thursday, July 14, 2011

Walgreens Mobile App Makes it a Snap to Refill your Prescriptions

I just downloaded the Walgreens Mobile App for my phone today.   It's available for the iPhone, Droid and Blackberry phones.  What I like is the simplicity to get the app itself.  Once you go to their mobile page, it provides the information you need about the app and provides instructions on how to download the app, based on the type of phone you have.  I took the easy path.  I sent a text to APP to 21525 and immediately received a text back with the short URLs to access the iPhone, Droid or Blackberry app.  I clicked on the Droid link - was brought to the download page within the Droid Market and within seconds, had the app on my phone.  That was pretty easy.  So now it was time to refill my prescription.  This is the best part!  You click on the Refill icon in your app and it brings up the  barcode reader on your phone so you simply scan the barcode on your prescription bottle.  Voila!  It instantly knows that it's me, what my prescription is, and puts in a default pick-up time for the next day.  I clicked "Done" and immediately received a text confirming my order.  It's the best way to avoid that tedious phone call to the automated system to refill your prescription.

This app just made my interaction with them a snap - the snap of my barcode reader so my order can be completed in literally a few seconds.  Love that!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011 Labs Says You Are What You Tweet. So how do I compare to Guy Kawasaki?

Do you ever wonder what your tweets actually say about you?  Or how they compare to a celebrity's tweets, or one of your favorite business book authors?  Well now you can with!

I became an even bigger fan of Guy Kawasaki after I read his latest book, "Enchantment."
I was so enamored with his simple and thoughtful approach to not just delighting customers, but to truly enchant them, I made the book required reading for my Columbia University class, Intro to Marketing/Marketing Management.  Our class was enchanted by him last night, when he was a guest speaker in our class.  

As a business legend, I often wonder why other leaders in the C-Suite don't try to adopt his principles and philosophies.  Heck, just do the right thing by their employees and their customers.  Yet in today's global marketplace, that is not our norm.  

When a colleague showed me's Infographics for Twitter today, I just had to create one for myself.  So who did I pick to compare myself with?  Guy of course!

I think it's a pretty good comparison - and will prove to be insightful to companies who choose to go brand vs brand.  I challenge you to compare your company's twitter handle versus one of your top competitors.  What does it show you? 

Thursday, July 7, 2011

US Postal Service provides 3% discount on letters with a mobile bar code

Great news for the mobile barcode industry.  Mobile Marketer reported today that the USPS provides business a three percent discount on Standard Mail and First-Class Mail letters and flats that include a mobile bar code, between July 1 and August 31.  They have partnered with ScanBuy on this initiative.  It's an ideal partnership to speed up adoption for QR codes/2D barcodes in general.  

Now mail recipients can interact with the business by scanning the code and obtain coupons, watch videos, or receive other information.  Direct Marketing Association (DMA) must be thrilled about this initiative since mailing pieces are even more trackable and measurable than ever before.  

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Take your 4G Internet with you Anywhere with CLEAR

A colleague showed me this nifty little product that allows him to have 4G internet access where ever he goes.  It used to be called Rover, but as of July 1st, the name changed to CLEAR

Looking for a free Wi-Fi hot spot sometimes is difficult to do.  Whether you need 4G speed at home, or when you're out and about on business, CLEAR has the ideal way for you to access it, at an affordable price.  Plus you can have up to 8 devices connected with the Rover Puck!  

They have various types of wireless devices to utilize such as Clear Spots (the Rover Puck shown below), USB drives and Home Modems.

Data plans start at $20/month and they have unlimited data for $49.95.  Now that's a bargain for 4G access!

You don't have to search for that coffee shop, McDonald's or Taco Bell to find your hot spot.  
Check out their coverage plans to be sure they can provide service in your neck of the woods.

Juniper Research forecasts Mobile Payments to reach $670B by 2015

 Mobile Commerce Daily posted the latest Juniper Research data regarding mobile payments.  There will be 2x-3x growth over the next 5 years, and will reach $670B, which isn't surprising.  There are many retailers leading the mobile payment trend, such as Starbucks.  NFC services are driving consumer adoption.  For example, I recently downloaded the new Droid app to make payments with my smartphone at Starbucks.  I was impressed by the real-time sync up of my gold card balance and the ease at which I could pay at the register, simply by holding my phone screen up to their barcode reader beside the register, with the app open.  It was very fast, and definitely has the cool factor.  I noticed that my card balance updated again within 1-2 minutes.  That's slick!

I might just be a sucker for cool technology, and for earning free Starbucks drinks, but the fact is I'm spending twice as much as I used to by using my smartphone for payments.  I used to reload my gold card every other month or so with about $35-$50 each time.  Now, I'm reloading it in 3-4 weeks.  By providing an app for my Droid phone, Starbucks caused me to increase my purchasing.   I think that would be applicable to other brands I'm loyal to if they created an app as well.  There's plenty of money to be made by leveraging mobile payments.  The method is quickly becoming the new normal for consumers as we see more and more retailers create their mobile strategies.