I am pretty sure that this post will be submitted for next week’s Carnival of the Mobilists, and if not, this portion of MobiThinking’s interview with Barney Loehnis needs to be repeated not just in mobile marketing, but dang near everywhere folks are thinking about mobile services and mobile interactions:

Let me start with some mobile marketing that I find both clever and insulting. Digital banking can be, should be, so brilliant, if only the banks really cared, which they clearly don’t. Contrary to most Hong Kong residents, apparently, I would happily never go into my bank – I want to do all my transactions online or via phone. My bank, however, seems to be intoxicated with rules and policies that do not serve any customers’ interest: I am prevented from completing many actions online, or via phone, if not done within banking hours, or after the completion of a paper based form which defies the point of internet and mobile banking. The big disappointment is their lack of customer centric approach to developing internet and mobile services. However, they are clever enough to monitor my credit card purchases and send me relevant SMS’s up-selling financial services relating to the product I have just bought – such as travel insurance after I’ve transacted on a travel web-site. In many ways this is brilliant mobile marketing and I congratulate them. However, as a customer I reject it because it is so self-serving to their interests in contrast to the lack of interest they have in investing in existing services. If they fail to provide me with services to do the basic tasks, they do not earn the right in my mind to up-sell further goods to me – however, relevant they may be.

The lesson is simple: firstly, brands need to think about both mobile services and mobile communications (in that order); secondly they need to take a consumer-centric approach to the development of services and policies

Amen, here-here, and everything else that I can muster to applaud this comment. Making sure that the customer/end-user is seeing and receiving real value from mobile-anything should be the focus, not the company-focus of adding more revenue streams. More revenue streams will come when the basics are taken care of, and people see value because you simplified the basics.

Now, if only my credit union, employer, utility companies, and government thought about mobile in the same way. Then this whole mobile living thing a bro does would be easier to understand and live.