Quick shot: going mobile

Dan Cobley, the vice president of marketing at Google Europe, shared his insight into why getting involved in mobile – which is already huge – is going to become absolutely essential.

“There are two lessons to learn from Google: always work to delight your customers; and bet on the future,” says Cobley.

He shows the Entrepreneurs’ Summit audience four April Fools’ jokes that Google has done, by way of illustration. “It costs us time and effort and we don’t get any revenue out of it it, but it absolutely delights our customers.”

Betting on the future is key to being successful. “When we launched Gmail on April 1, 2004, we were betting on the future – we knew that if everyone picked up on it immediately and used up the 1GB of free storage, we’d be the fools. But we knew that it would take time to build it up, and it was an absolute delight.”

The mobile industry, he says, is another illustration of this. People are increasingly using their mobile phones for search. “It’s a billion-dollar business today.”

What are the four things that Google is betting on?

  • A future where cars drive themselves
  • A future where everything on all your devices exists in the cloud
  • A future where your notebook computer is disposable, when you lose it, you can just pick up where you were on a new one
  • A future where mobile is paramount – where it is first
Dan Cobley explains: “The way we action that in the company is to ask our engineers is to build everything for the mobile first, and then port it back onto the desktop. This makes sure that it delights our users on the mobile first.”

He adds that when starting a business or launching a project, remember that it will take time to get there. “Technology will move on significantly, and users will move with it. Design your business plan for the future that will be there when you launch it, so you’ll be in a much better position to delight your users and to win.”

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