To answer this other intriguing questions, Google conducted an anthropological study.
The goal: to gain a better understanding of how people feel about, relate to and find meaning in the mobile space.
The meaning of mobile is available for download or embed at Think with Google.
How to be meaningful (from the study):
1. Start from the person up, rather than the brand down.
One reason mobile storytelling hasn’t reached its potential is because the content is frequently repurposed from other media, which have their own meanings. A television spot on a smartphone’s screen won’t resonate the same way — and not only because of its size. People are creating their own stories around themselves, their friends, and their world — so link your brand’s story to their stories.
2. Be as quicksilver as they are.
We’ve become serendipity addicts, accustomed to a never ending flow of offers, discounts, events, and invitations, each making us more excited for the next. The key for marketers is to join the flow in a manner that’s both unobtrusive (by offering something of value) and also on brand.
3. Help people tell stories to their tribes.
Remember, they contain multitudes. Telling someone a story is one thing; the key to making it go viral is to give them a story they can share as their own with their tribe.
4. Exploit the Long Here and the Big Now.
Chance can be cultivated; opportunity can be orchestrated; serendipity can be engineered. Anchor your brand’s story in a particular moment in place and time and let them discover it — in effect becoming part of their stories as well.
5. The future is local.
On the one hand, this is obvious. But think beyond geo-targeting. Connect brands to local places, events, and landmarks, and offer to enliven and enrich them.
These points may seem kind of obvious, yet when you think about it, they are rarely followed and in some cases still an after thought.
You will find examples of applied principles in the study -- Heinecken star player on small or gigantic, Coca-Cola re:briefed and John Butterhill's virtual photo walks on Google+ on the new tribalism, Red Bull street art view on placemaking.
[hat tip Experientia]
Valeria is an experienced listener. She is also frequent speaker at conferences and companies on a variety of topics. To book her for a speaking engagement click here.