itstimeOur little personal all-rounder and companion in all situations - the smartphone - answers us any question at any time, and the information obtained then helps us making decisions. In these situations, called "micro-moments", companies can easily get in touch with customers by being helpful to them.

The term ‘micro moment’ is mainly influenced by Google, meaning specific touchpoints in the customer journey where the user picks up his smartphone to perform a specific action: this can be the search for a service, a route description or any solution to a problem. Google differentiates between four different micro-moments, virtually four different reasons why users of mobile devices turn to the Internet for advice:

1. Want-to-know moments: at first, the mobile user wants to get information on a certain topic or even help in a particular situation. This is the first starting point where companies can be in demand and helpful, because the user does not know exactly what he wants or what he will find.

2. Want-to-go moments: in these moments, the user searches for places that are mostly in the immediate vicinity of him. Usually, he already knows what he is looking for and where he wants to go, but this does not limit the possibilities for companies to be helpful for the user and to attract his attention.

3. Want-to-do moments: here, the user is looking for explicit explanations - he wants to learn something, continue his education, be it theoretical (explanation video) or practical (washing instructions) - flexibly and without being tied to a place to act.

4. Want-to-buy moments: as the term suggests, it is about the purchase decision and in doing so the mobile device is used as well.

According to Google, 82% of the millennials consult their smartphone when they are shopping in a store, which makes it clear that the customer journey has changed dramatically. Especially for local providers, these touchpoints can mean opportunities, because one in three smartphone users already bought from another brand / company than he intended. The simple reason for this is that the right information was provided the moment it was needed. So, a good time to prove useful and follow Google's advice ‘being there, being useful and quick’.

To be there means first of all identifying relevant moments for your own company and the industry to be prepared: when the customer reaches this point in the customer journey. This can be done, for example, in the form of dialog marketing (via app or email) and being attentive and observing exactly what the customer needs is of course advisable. Above all, it is useful and helpful, if businesses can adapt to customers individual needs. Because if the user is not led to the answers he needs in his ‘I-want-to-moment”, he probably follows another path.

Being the fastest cannot hurt, especially when talking about the mobile presentation. If this does not work properly, the user will quickly switch to another provider: e.g., according to Google, 70% of users change sites when loading takes too long. Today's mobile users want to receive information fast, make quick decisions and buy immediately. However, not only the fast loading of web pages is important, but the ability to react quickly to the micro contexts, too. Any action by a user may provoke a different response from the provider, e.g. when real-time messages are sent.

The fact is that 70% of companies achieve higher ROI when they have made their business model mobile. So, it's high time to do customer-centric marketing and include micro-moments in the strategy – especially since some believe that they are by now even more important than personalization.

By Daniela La Marca