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Mobile is not just the hot topic of the moment– it is clearly your future. The rapid and continued growth of smartphones and the decline of desktop PC’s quickly validates this thinking.  Observe your own brands consumer’s behaviors.  Every day consumers and business are growing more dependent on their mobile devices.  Below are some thoughts on what you can do this year to maximize your engagement efforts.

Truly embracing mobile reality requires a shift in thinking and many brands still do not have a mobile or encompassing digital strategy in place. Often quoted is the fact that over seventy percent of brands’ (still) have an optimized their web site for mobile!

Creating experiences across a variety of screen views such as smartphone and tablet-optimized sites, along with the increasing need to select mobile platforms and develop mobile apps, is not tomorrow land it is an imperative to improve a brand’s performance right now.

Below are seven tips to help brand managers think about and integrate mobile with loyalty ecommerce and CRM programs to create new integrated experiences for in-store, at home and on-the-go.

1.Take a Wide Eco-View: Look at all of the touch points and device considerations that surround a mobile campaign. Consider environmental conditions like in-store Wi-Fi, device detection and fallback tactics such as developing SMS or mobile web alternatives to more specialized mobile tactics. As mobile becomes more integrated with other touch points, the need to get store Ops and IT involved becomes a critical success factor. Pick an agency that knows how to work intimately with all facets of your organization.

2. Optimize Across Device Screen’s: Know what devices to optimize for and how far to take it. Don’t just look at today’s device penetration for a market, but also the consumer behavior that goes with it and where the trend lines point. Some agencies and platform providers are so bent on serving every device that the entire experience gets ‘dumbed down’ so far that it doesn’t engage anyone effectively, especially the smartphone crowd that is more likely to participate. Consider that your consumer will be using multiple devices at different times during the day, so you must be able to support that experience across platforms.

3. Leverage what Consumers Know. Remember websites and relevant marketing assets—such as email need to be optimized for tablets and smartphones for everyday PC tasks. Be sure these are integrated with your campaigns.

4. Pilot For More than One Test. As the promise of enterprise mobile solutions and point of sales integration continues to heat up, plan for concepts and pilots that set a bigger stage for follow-on investment. Sometime the wrong conclusion is reached from just a single trial.

5. Analyze, Analyze. ‘Big Data’ is back so the more multiple channels are connected; the more you need data to serve up the right experience to the right prospect and customer. There is a lot of opportunity here with location-based service integration and better behavioral and preference-based targeting.

6. Plan for Loyalty, CRM & NFC. As most consumer brands have a mobile app now is the time to plan for ways to enhancement the user experience (and create new revenues) that can bring context aware features, embedded loyalty, and in some cases pre-paid and mobile wallet capabilities such as a NFC app. Now is the time to be planning and testing these opportunities.

7. Grow Mobile Media Ad Budgets. As we transition from ad hoc mobile ad budgets, your 2012 media budget should include more purposeful campaigns and sizable budgets directly set aside for mobile.

This begs the question, what do you think are the most important mobile considerations that brand managers will struggle with in 2014?