GUEST BLOG: Phil Jones outlines exactly why EVERY business needs a mobile strategy

Seven years on and with data speeding up, cloud computing growing exponentially and the business agility being key to competitiveness, having a mobile strategy is a pre-requisite of a successful business - whether start-up or established.

The way we access and share information is at the core of everything we do as a business. Using mobile technology simply means we can do this faster and more effectively, turning information into insight and responding to market movements instantly. It also means we can spend more time in the field, listening and engaging with our customers.

Smartphones and tablets mean we are all used to accessing information more quickly and on the move. They open up a world of new possibilities for businesses, freeing up staff and resources to be far more flexible. Employees are no longer desk-bound or restricted by when and where they can access information.

Roam is the new home, location independent working being one of the big trends of the future as well as plural working (holding down multiple jobs).  Numbers of occasional home workers are growing rapidly, currently around 3.7 million according to the TUC.

We did some research that suggests the real numbers of people using technology away from the office is nearer three times that number.

Technology continues to adapt with these changes, providing solutions to optimise processes, regardless of whether we are in the office, at home or elsewhere.

For example, mobile print solutions such as Google Cloud Print and Airprint mean we can now send data to a printer device wirelessly and without the need to install a driver.

Reputation management is also key and tools like Twitter allow us not only to speak directly to our customers but also to monitor what they are saying about our products.

My smartphone is a lifeline for keeping me informed and in touch. I update my Twitter account daily and listen for what people are saying about Brother and about our competitors or anything relating to the printer market.

I also use my smartphone for accepting LinkedIn requests, posting blogs and checking subscribed RSS feeds.

Speed is crucial today to compete. If you're a small business that hasn't embraced mobile working yet or are worried that you're getting left behind, it's never too late to catch up.

Watch, learn and engage with others who are using mobile technology and you'll soon see the benefits of giving it a go. It's well worth spending time getting to know your way around the various platforms as it could be a powerful source of new sales opportunities for your business.

You can hear more from Phil at his website and follow him on twitter.

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