ex-2ergo Boss Launches Retail Mobile Agency

Chris Brassington, ex-group managing director of 2ergo, has launched a retail mobile marketing company with a stark warning and a major event to help retailers play catch-up with the mobile consumer.

Brassington has unveiled his new venture, Starfish 360, with a warning that shopping is changing and that the ‘thumb generation’ is leading this evolution. Meanwhile, he says, retailers are not reacting quickly enough, and when they do, they are distracted by the technology.

To get retailers back on track, Starfish 360 will host the North of Englands first integrated mobile marketing and commerce event aimed at the retailing industry, with the support of the Interactive Media in Retail Group (IMRG).

The ‘Mobile Marketing for Retailers’ event will be held at the Radisson Blu Hotel at Manchester Airport on 24 February. The event will provide retailers with a strategic blueprint for implementing mobile marketing successfully in their business.

“Retailers who fail to implement an m-commerce framework will lose sales in 2011 to competitors who do,” says Brassington. “This year, its all about capturing thumb-fall and exploiting this killer channel and cutting through all the noise.”

Brassington points to research that reveals that in the UK, 7.7m consumers want to shop on their mobiles phones (Source: Populus/Glamoo); and to stats from comSxcore showing that smartphone adoption in the UK rose 70 per cent to 11.2m users during the year to January 2010, making the UK the leading European market for smartphone usage.

“If you want to know what the future holds for the UK, then look to Japan, where, according to ABI Research, mobile commerce exceeded $10bn in 2009, and more than 80 per cent of web pages browsed are from hand-held mobiles,” says Brassington. “This isnt about technology gimmicks, fads and a bolt on approach. Its not about an iPhone app, which can only ever reach a fraction of the market. It is about a 360-degree approach to m-commerce with full integration with your sales, stock, stores, website, customer service, marketing and business analytics, whilst taking advantage of location-based commerce.”

The ‘Mobile Marketing for Retailers’ event will bring together retailers and leading players in the mobile industry, all focused on how to go about mobile marketing and commerce, and what to think about at every stage. Welcoming the event, David Smith, managing director at the IMRG, says: “There have been huge changes in consumer behaviour recently due to mobile technology. People are accessing retailer sites on the way to work, in the street and even in stores to compare product prices. The opportunity for retailers getting this right is massive, but they must ensure that they understand how consumers are interacting with their sites. We welcome this event as a means for spreading education in this exciting and critical area.”

Starfish says it has developed an integrated end-to-end process for retailers that fuses business strategy, customer engagement, and analytics with best-in-breed technology partners.