In the past week, I ran out of cash (my allowance from my dear wife) twice! I do keep my debit card handy though. At the Farmer's market, not Best Buy or any other big fancy retailer, the local cheese curd family business (very small biz) ... processed my payment on their iPad through a little one inch by one inch square reader. Later in the week, a friend was frustrated by the distance their customer had to walk to come in and make payment off a transaction that occurred on the ramp of a general aviation airport. In the old days to offer a mobile payment system would have been in the many thousand$. Per the picture attached, this past week a small private bicycle shop http://hillsborobikecompany.com/ which was undergoing renovation, had no checkout counter to speak of, seamless took care of my purchase while we stood there talking about our mountain bike heroics (mainly his...). The owner of the bike shop used the same gizmo as the cheese curd maker. Squareup.com as he coached me charges NOTHING for the little one inch terminal. He vetted them with the local big banks and they did not have all the cumbersome fees and confusing payment structures. Like most newer orgs and start-ups they haven't lost sight of this simple phrase called customer SERVICE.... or more fundamentally ... treat people the way you want to be treated as a customer.
Could a small business pick up a bunch of second hand iPhones / iTouches, only set-up the wifi receiver in each, (no need for a bunch of cell phone plans), and turn every salesperson into a check-out counter?
Ever had buyer's remorse before check-out? How about your customers? Mobile Payments might help you close a deal faster. Time kills deals - mobile payments shorten that.
Obviously mobile payments are convenient, but is it really for everyone? We think probably more so than not. Think of all the checkout lines or walks you make that could be made obsolete? How can mobile help your business? We suggest visiting your local farmer's market. It's healthy and enlightening.
Business owners and marketing pros .... the greatest opportunity in 2013 to move ahead of your competitors or conversely to be left behind is with the advance of marketing automation. If there is a topic of "mastery" that a business needs to seek, it is "Marketing Automation". Web strategy, e-mail marketing, SEO, social media strategy, etc. are each in many respects tactical or federated tools.... and so diverse ...they are likely a royal pain in the rear to keep up with! Marketing Automation is the future nexus for more efficient execution of all your tactical marketing. We don't know any individual pros in this field. The software vendors like Infusion Soft, HubSpot, Marketo are experiencing phenomenal growth in this space .... but of course they are not unbiased mentors ... but we can learn a lot from them.
These stats in the link below are kind of confusing, and frankly not well presented in our opinion .... but as a business owner it does give you a picture of how Marketing Automation will propel you or set you further behind.
Giancarlo Newsome is the founder of G-Force Accelerated Marketing.