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My Mobile Day Experience

Micro-moment and the phone

How is your relationship with your mobile phone? Is it the love-of-your-life or do you think it has started to become a burden on you? For me, I cannot live without my mobile phone for a second. From the time I wake up to the time I go to bed, I need my phone next to me as a little companion.

I feel the app we have on our phones and how we use them truly portray who we are. Our day-to-day routine with this gadget can shed light on our thoughts, behaviours and feelings which can be helpful for marketers. This behaviour of how each time we interact with our smartphone to solve our problems is defined by Google as micro-moments.

Every day, we are met with these micro-moments and Google classifies them into four main categories ‘I-want-to-know moment’, ‘I-want-to-go moment’, ‘I-want-to-do moment’ and ‘I-want-to-buy’ moment.

Each time we are in these micro-moments, we reach out to our mobile phones to find solutions and fulfil our wants. It’s the moment when you pop out your mobile phone and start doing something for want no matter where you are like sitting on the toilet and googling lyrics to the song which is stuck in your head. Or checking where Bitcoin is headed now. Or maybe finding answers to silly questions like if you place two slices of bread on each side of Earth, would it make it a sandwich?

An app for every micro-moment

We know that every app is developed for different purposes some are made to watch movies, some to listen to music, some to find directions and so on. So, I took a long and strict look at my relationship with my smartphone during the day (ahem! only for educational purposes, of course ) and the apps that I like. The purpose was to find my micro-moments. What they made me do and how my wants were fulfilled (or not fulfilled) by these apps.

Not only it was nice to contemplate the choices I make around the use of my mobile phone. But also as a marketer, to find what I can learn from all this understanding. So, here goes nothing.

YouTube – I believe I can fly

YouTube is my go-to app when I want help in achieving the greatest things in life. (Like trying to fly without wings) The app serves my usual and sometimes unusual needs at different hours. I check YouTube to watch motivational videos, interesting vlogs, and how-to videos. However, there are also strange moments of happiness when I spend hours and hours looking at prank videos.

So for me, YouTube comes in handy at my ‘I-want-to-do’, ‘I-want-to-know’ and even ‘I-want-to-relax’ micro-moments. But what frustrates me is the in-app non-skippable ads. Imagine you watching a prank video of a young guy pretending to be the company CEO who is firing store workers for poor customer service and all of a sudden it’s the lady in her 60s trying to sell you a $1000 course on investments techniques. Not happening.

Google Keep – Every idea needs a chance

Google Keep is my other favourite app. I do not how I could live a productive life without Google Keep. It’s the best space for me to make my to-do list, keep my ideas, goals, and store important information. This cross-platform digital notepad has made my life so much easier.

Google Keep helps me in my ‘I-want-to-achieve’ and ‘I-want-to-remember’ micro-moments. I take the app with me literally everywhere and it has been a perfect solution to jot down stuff that I would like to refer to at a later point in time. All the great ideas that come to my mind while driving or while taking out the garbage (like making a bird feeder in the backyard using a plastic bottle), this app helps me keep my ideas safe.

One thing that I don’t like about this app is the missing organizational feature. Even the basic categorization is missing, let alone more useful tagging and grouping. I appreciate that this is, perhaps, by design a quick note-taking tool but some basic organization would be good that can also help me in ‘I-want-to-plan’ micro-moment.

Instagram- Life is so perfect

Instagram is the app that fulfills my ‘I-want-to-discover’ micro-moments. I can catch up with friends and family about what they are up to. And on other hand, it also lets me escape from the real world to an imaginary world where people post the picture-perfect parts of their lives while ignoring the not-so-perfect parts. This is the app where I get to see so many of the beautiful people, places, and things. (and also see my friends eating unhealthy junk food while posting a gym selfie)

I have been well consuming the app although I try to stay away from it. What frustrates me though, is the number of ads. I honestly can’t believe how many of them there are on Instagram. They’re everywhere, especially in Stories. To make things even worse, I don’t see ads that are actually relevant to me.

Amazon Shopping – Everything at the doorstep

For someone like me who is lazy to go shopping in-store, Amazon is a blessing. Every time I want to buy something, the first app that I check is Amazon. I wouldn’t check any other store app unless I am not able to find the item on Amazon (which is rare!).

This app is always on my side in my ‘I-want-to-buy’ micro-moment. (and sometimes also in my impulsive-buy moment – like the fancy fox rug I thought would look cool, now makes me feel like a primitive man) However, the journey has not always been smooth. Recently, after placing an order for a pair of sunglasses I wasn’t able to change my payment card for the order. I was asked to “Revise payment card”, but upon trying, I received an error several times until needing to speak with a representative. This is not acceptable and certainly, Amazon could do better than this.

Google Maps – Fly me to the moon

Google Maps is always there in my ‘I-need-to-go’ micro-moment.

I would hate to get lost on city roads because of missing one turn (it’s a pain in the backside, believe me). And I can proudly say that the app has been an absolute saviour for me most of the time. Its live traffic feature and different commute modes have been the greatest functions for me.

This app is a trustful guide 99 times out of 100, but what if it turns completely against you and stops showing directions altogether? That’s exactly what happens to me sometimes on my iPhone. The app wouldn’t show the directions until I removed and reinstalled the app again.

Does that mean it’s time to switch to Apple Maps? Not yet. But if Google does not care to fix this bug in a long time then maybe ‘Yes’. Because I want the app to be useful to me ‘in-the-moment’.

The takeaway

You are the result of what you consume on your mobile phone. Your mood for the day, your behaviour, or general attitude in life keeps on changing by the content you intake. The result of this day-long usage can be either bad or good, this depends on you. My smartphone gives me happy quotes, wings to my creativity, and a stronger motive to live (fun watching dolphins dancing in the water comes as a bonus).

Marketers should realize that just being present in the moment is not enough, they need to find more relatable ideas for an organic approach to the audience. In the moments, customers want what they want and not what you want to offer so marketers should be thinking of innovative ways to integrate the ads in the content rather than interrupting the customer’s experience. And when it comes to apps, customers expect them to be quick and easy so the user experience should be as frictionless as possible.

Hope you enjoyed reading about the experience with my mobile phone, I would love to know yours too. Please share them in the comment section below.

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