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Mobile MindShare February/March 2014

Welcome to the February/March edition of Mobile Mindshare, the mobile trends newsletter brought to you by theCOMMSapp. Given the speed at which mobile communications is evolving, organizations of all sizes, public and private, for profit and non-profit are trying to determine how 21st Century mobile technology fits into their communications plans. Through Mobile Mindshare we strive to bring you the latest in mobile technology and how it is impacting the communications industry – particularly investor relations, internal communications and general corporate communications.

In this month’s Mobile Mindshare, we look at how public companies are shifting away from the traditional earnings conference call and employing mobile ways to engage their investors. We discuss Apple’s App Store for the enterprise – the VPP Store for Business – and share with you our perspective on the recently concluded and first truly mobile Olympics in Sochi.  And, of course, we continue to provide you with our regular “Mobile Music of the Month,” “App Wrap” and other interesting mobile news and updates.

We hope you are enjoying Mobile Mindshare.  If there is a topic you’d like us to explore, we’d love to hear your thoughts. Connect with us on Twitter or send us an email.

Mobily yours,

Jeff Corbin
Founder, theCOMMSapp




The traditional earnings call that is!  In this month’s IRevolution, we’ll take a look at what some of today’s most recognized companies are doing to spice up the traditional earnings conference call.

YouTube has made us aware that video consumption is occurring more on the mobile device than on desktop computers.  Therefore, as more and more companies consider a mobile IR communications strategy, we can expect that video will also take on a greater role in communicating to investors what is going on in a company both with regard to its business operations as well as its financials.  And it already has.  Starting in Q2 2013 and continuing throughout the year, some of the best known companies have used video and gone beyond the traditional audio conference call to provide analysts and investors with more transparency, greater access to key executives and more context around the numbers than ever before.

Below we take a look at three companies that are pioneering the video earnings call movement.  While video webcasts won’t be taking over the traditional audio conference call anytime soon, it’s only a matter of time before the list grows from 3 to 300 to 3,000 and more.

Yahoo! Q4 and Full Year 2013 Earnings

Yahoo! has certainly wowed investors as the pioneer of the video earnings call.  CEO Marissa Mayer and CFO Ken Goldman present a highly engaging earnings performance through the use of interactive charts, new product demonstrations and a more personal Q&A session.  While the production value here may cost more than a company’s total IR budget for the year, Yahoo! has utilized current technology advancements and applied them to its earnings calls.  At the same time, they have retained the traditional earnings call format (prepared remarks followed by Q&A) to keep investors at ease and ensure that they still get all of the information the way they are accustomed to.

Netflix Q4 2013 Earnings Interview

“Interview” is certainly a more appropriate term for Netflix’s latest earnings presentation as they have scrapped the traditional call and overhauled it with a completely new earnings format.  Hosted by two covering analysts that drive the conversation, CEO Reed Hastings, CFO David Wells and Chief Content Officer Ted Sarandos engage in a deep dive into the corporate story for the quarter as they are broadcast via Google+.  There are no prepared remarks.  The interview is great for the professional investor that is very familiar with the story and metrics, but may be too cumbersome for retail investors who are looking for broad themes and a high level overview of the financials.

Hewlett Packard Q4 2013 Earnings

While Yahoo! and Netflix certainly took earnings calls to a new level, HP has taken a slightly different approach that we believe will become more popular as video earnings presentations continue to permeate the investor relations industry.  The five minute earnings summary presented by CEO Meg Whitman is long enough to capture the relevant information from the quarter, yet short enough that it captivates the audience for the duration of the video.  For companies not looking to break the bank or go all in on a video earnings presentation, this summary is a great middle of the road way to capture investors’ need for video content while maintaining the tradition of the audio earnings conference call.

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There is another obstacle to consider, however, when creating video content.  In many instances, because of technical incompatibilities, viewing or listening to video (and audio too) through a company’s website via a mobile device browser will not work.  A native app solution like theIRapp platform can solve this problem.  To learn more about this, feel free to contact our Customer Care department by emailing us at or calling 212-896-1255.

So how do you plan to showcase your next earnings call? Video? Live tweets? Something else? Let us know @theCOMMSapp. We’d love to hear your thoughts!


The Water Cooler 

While Apple’s App Store and Google Play provide access for anyone who wants to download an app, some apps aren’t meant for everyone. At theCOMMSapp, we saw this particularly with companies who want use apps to communicate directly with their employees (hence, theEMPLOYEEapp). Until recently, the only way that a company could have a customized app for download on Apple iOS devices was to enter into an enterprise developer agreement with Apple and make the app available through the company’s own network and servers. While this option still exists, many companies have refrained from creating their own apps given the need to address network, IT and security issues.

However, Apple has developed a new solution. It’s called the VPP Store for Business. In a recent blog post for Wired Insights, Jeff Corbin, Founder of theCOMMSapp, discusses the opportunities that the VPP Store for Business brings to companies who want to build apps specifically for their employees or another focused group.

Apple’s VPP Store for Business Unlocks New Opportunities for Developers

Businesses and their employees are relying more and more on Apple devices in their work. In fact, according to a recent Forrester Report, “Apple won about 8% of global business and government spending on computers and tablets in 2012.” This is up from 1% in 2009 and will likely reach 11% in only a few years. With companies increasingly embracing “bring your own device” (BYOD) policies, a new window of opportunity has emerged for both app developers and businesses to develop customized, native apps specific for their employees.

Read More

Mobile Views

The 2014 Sochi Olympic Games – There’s An App For That Too

As the state of digital media evolves, marketers continually seek opportunities to engage with consumers throughout the Olympics. The 2012 London Olympics were hailed as the first time that social media played a significant role in both following the games and how results were shared across the world. As we watched Team USA compete against 88 other nations, Sochi 2014 will go down in history as the first truly mobile Olympics.   Here are a few interesting factoids regarding the Olympics and mobile technology:

  • Four years ago at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver only two events were live streamed for fans to watch online. During the 2012 London Olympics a majority of the games were watched from a desk or laptop computer and 60% of visits to the London Olympic Games official website came from mobile devices.  During the games in Sochi it was not necessary to be glued to your television or sit in front of a computer – all action could have been streamed straight to your smartphone or tablet.
  • NBC, the official network of the 2014 Olympics, gave Americans the opportunity to have real time access to events and ceremonies through a number of applications. Not only did these apps provide 24/7 access to this information, but more importantly, NBC pushed news of medal wins and placement through its mobile application. This consistently kept those who opted in engaged and informed more so than ever before.
  • Brands realize that mobile needs to be part of their Olympics marketing strategy – P&G, one of the largest sponsors of the Olympic Games, partnered with Snaps to create a mobile application for Braun’s “Cool Under Pressure” campaign. The application allowed consumers to create and share visual good luck and congratulatory messages with Olympic athlete J.R. Celski. Probably the best feature for P&G, the app allowed consumers to share these messages with their social networks.

Large scale events like the Olympics are a great opportunity to blend on site activities with digital activations to build a stronger connection with the consumer.  To the extent the Olympics, the oldest competition in the history of the world, has caught up with modern times to reach its worldwide audience, one would therefore think that at this point in the 21st Century, all major brands and organizations should seriously consider a mobile strategy.


The App Wrap

Earlier this month, theCOMMSapp Founder, Jeff Corbin, attended Apps World 2014 in San Francisco. In the video below, Jeff takes a moment to reflect on key themes from the conference – in particular, apps and enterprise mobility.


Mobile Music of the Month

We Are The Champions


Need to Know

On February 4th, Facebook celebrated its 10th birthday. Bloomberg Businessweek takes a look at the evolution of the social networking site and its many accomplishments over the last decade. We don’t know what’s in store for the next 10 years, but we do know Facebook’s recent financial results can be attributed to their focus on mobile. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg told CNBC, “This is obviously a really exciting quarter for Facebook…the mobile shift is happening and products are working for marketers.” Sandberg pointed to the seismic mobile shift in 2013 – the first year people spent more time on mobile than on television.


theCOMMSapp Welcomes

Who:  Royal DSM (NYSE Euronext Amsterdam: DSM), a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and materials

What: theIRapp

Why: Wants to be mobily connected to its investors

Interesting Fact: Royal DSM is headquartered in the Netherlands, with locations on six continents.


Mobile News

02/10/2014 Infographic: What’s Driving Mobile Marketing in 2014?
02/03/2014 Forrester: HTML5 apps still not as good as native apps
01/29/2014 Mobile Apps Will Transform All Business Processes – Is Your Company Ready?
01/22/2014 Gartner Says by 2017, Mobile Users Will Provide Personalized Data Streams to More Than 100 Apps and Services Every Day
12/16/2013 Xignite: Publicly Traded Companies Can Easily Create an Investor Relations Mobile App to Serve Content to Their Investors with theIRapp