The views expressed on this website/weblog are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer, Forrester Research.
I started this blog because I am passionate about how technology - specifically wireless - can impact businesses and how they engage with their customers. I worked as a management consultant for a number of years before becoming a wireless industry analyst at Jupiter Research. At Jupiter, I found that I was spending a lot of time interpreting our technology (and in my case wireless) research for regular consumer product and service companies. I figured, "why not write mobile research directly for these non-telco companies," as I call them.
In 2006, I launched mobile marketing and media coverage at Jupiter. When Forrester Research acquired Jupiter Research in August 2008, I decided with my corporate transition to make a coverage transition as well. I wanted to expand upon this research I'd started at Jupiter and look at mobile strategies more broadly. I wanted to conduct research and advise our clients on how mobile can help them achieve a wide range of business objectives.
Every consumer product and services company should be considering how they will engage with their customers within the mobile environment. Many clients ask me, "How will I know when I should have a mobile presence?" I ask, "How did you know when you needed a Web presence? Was it when 5% of your customers were online? 10% Was it when your competitors had a website? When did you decide to add rich media to your website? What percentage of your customers was connecting via broadband?" I ask many of our clients this question. The answer with most is, "The decision was strategic. We knew we needed a web presence. We sensed that the Internet would be an important medium for us to engage with our customers." Mobile will be the same. A mobile presence isn't table stakes today, but it will be.
I grew up skiing in great skiing states like Colorado, Maine, and Wyoming. When I was in my mid-20’s I realized a funny thing about skiing -- that just about everyone who has ever made it down a black diamond ski slope fancies themselves to be a good skier. I’ve been skiing with all different types of skiers, and they all think they’re experts.
Contrast that to the game (or sport) of golf. In golf, unlike skiing, there are clear standards, rules, and a score. At the end of my golf game, when I end up with a 110 and three triple-bogeys, I can’t claim I’m an expert golfer. There are people all around me who can prove to me, in their scores, that they are far better than I am. But rather than get me discouraged, their scores serve as a model for me, and they motivate me to get better.
We are very excited about the launch of the CMR blog, and are looking forward to engage in a conversation with you on topics that are close to our hearts. The blog will have multiple contributors, and I’d like to introduce the four key contributors to you:
Corina Matiesanu, Director, Data Operations and Insights, will publish on topics related to market research best practices and global consumer insights
Jackie Anderson, Consumer Insights Analyst, will publish on topics related to consumer behavior, social media, market research best practices, and customer segmentation.
If you're the typical CEO, you are carrying a BlackBerry. But not for long. Once the iPhone is able, in a corporate setting, to replicate all aspects of Outlook (email, calendar, notes, and tasks) with high security, the iPhone floodgates will open and you will have a new device. Here's why:
1) User interface. Despite the annoyance of the glass keyboard, the iPhone interface is faster, more intuitive, more flexible, and more versatile. You can do more, with more content, less instruction, and faster speed.
2) Applications. iPhone has a massive head start in the battle for applications. It's possible that your company already has an iPhone application in the market -- servicing your customers. Don't you wish you could see it? And there may already be applications available that will make your job easier -- I predict that corporate dashboards for CEOs will be a small but influential segment of the iPhone apps portfolio. In some markets, it's changing how customers connect to companies -- here's an example around mobile banking. The application revolution has begun -- and it's not on BlackBerry.
3) iPhone will soon be available from more cell services providers -- starting first in Europe. Once the device breaks out of its AT&T cage, the multiplier effect will kick in -- and the flood waters will rise fast.
The IT mega vendor acquires the predictive analytics specialist SPSS
On July 28th IBM announced the plan to acquire SPSS, a leading provider of predictive analytics solutions. The acquisition, which is subject to shareholder and regulatory approval, is expected to close later this year and will position IBM as a leading vendor of Business Intelligence in the market.
Is regulatory oversight more or less invasive than oral surgery? Sure, both are necessary sometimes. But however you feel about the current level of corporate scrutiny, it’s clearly increasing, and that means the jobs of corporate governance, risk management, and compliance professionals are going to get even tougher.
The last month has seen some dramatic news related to corporate disclosure, most notably a bill approved by the House Financial Services committee that would require public companies to explain executive and employee compensation packages, and to write rules that would prohibit any compensation that could have a substantial, negative effect on financial markets. Lawmakers expect that this bill, if approved, will be rolled up with other legislation.
Julie is currently employed by Forrester Research where she is a Vice President and Principal Analyst. Her area of expertise lies primarily in telecommunications and consumer mobility more specifically. She is leveraging this expertise along with her experience in management consulting and engineering to guide clients in the development, evaluation and execution of their mobile strategies. As cell phones evolve into the most ubiquitous device owned and used by consumers, consumer product and services companies will find engaging with their customers on these devices increasingly important. Julie's research and analysis have been widely cited in publications including the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, USA Today, BusinessWeek, RCR Wireless, The Onion and on PBS, NBC, and CBS.
Julie joined Forrester in July 2008 when they acquired JupiterResearch. Julie's experience in the telecommunications industry dates back 20 years with her first internship as a microwave circuit engineering intern at COMSAT Laboratories. She has since split her time as an engineer, management consultant, and analyst between Germany and the United States. Prior to joining JupiterResearch, Julie worked as a management consultant at Booz Allen & Hamilton where she worked with both automotive and telecommunications clients to drive product portfolio investment decisions, sourcing strategies, and broader strategic and business plan development. She also worked in business development for a wireless startup in San Francisco.
Julie holds a B.S.E.E. and a master of science in electrical engineering and computer science from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She also holds an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan.
Hardly a week goes by without a press article or conference reporting how ubiquitous mobile payment services and their adoption are in Japan. Forrester decided to put some figures on the so-called Japanese mass-market reality and to understand why Japan is the declared leader in mobile contactless payment services. What lessons can others learn from the Japanese market and to what extent do they apply to Europe?
There are several reasons why Japan is ahead of the curve among which the role of Felica Networks in the value chain and the scale merchants could benefit from (Sony and DoCoMo invested several dozens of million euros to make sure that retailers and points of sale had the technology to read the chipsets embedded in mobile devices), the loosening of Japan's financial regulations (making it possible for non-banks to become financial services players), operators' role in paving the way for mass market adoption of mobile Internet and higher usage of mobile services (fostering the natural expansion of mobile payments).
Despite this, reality is that the mobile contactless market in Japan is only reaching critical mass, not mass-market adoption. In Europe, conditions differ quite a lot and even if Near-Field Technology is likely to play a key role in the future, the technology is only entering the pre-commercial era.