Category : wireless

Engaging customers via their mobile devices is an exciting proposition for many organizations; however, it has to be done with care. These solutions often carry a significant cost and depend on a Return on Investment (ROI) model to make sense.
Achieving this ROI requires walking a fine line between meaningful engagement and being a nuisance. Here are five best practices to help you do that.

5 ways to ensure your mobile strategy works

1. Think big picture

The goal is to create a user experience that provides vast amounts of data to the organization while delivering value to the customer. Accomplishing that means the experience needs to be immersive and omni-channel (e.g., SMS, email, app-based, digital signage, direct mail, etc.).
Too many organizations jump straight to the mobile application without realizing adoption of mobile applications is low and retention of those mobile apps is even lower. A holistic approach that embraces the web (traditional and mobile), mobile apps, digital and physical signage, and some of the emerging areas such as augmented reality (AR) and context-aware chatbots will be far more successful.
Analytics and business intelligence tools must be included because understanding the success of these messages and their impact on the bottom line is a necessity, as engagement attempts that are ill-received may create a negative effect on the business.
2. Establish a baseline
Before rolling out any new engagement solution or even a single targeted campaign, it is important to understand the baseline. What is normal for a specific time of day, day of week, demographic, location, etc.
If there are areas in which these baselines are unknown, the success of an engagement will also likely be unknown. The length of time to determine a credible baseline depends on business and vertical; however, a month of data will provide statistically valuable data for many organizations.

3. Consider your social credibility

Each engagement or touchpoint with the user must be carefully weighed prior to being implemented, as the organization is spending “social credibility” with the customer in issuing these engagements. Determining that a message is hitting the right person at the right time and place is paramount to success.
While the organization may want to drive a specific behavior, it must be done in such a way that it is graciously accepted by the recipient. For less important messages, consider other channels for delivery—email, direct mail and digital signage integrations are options that are less invasive than a targeted push message.

4. Leverage employee engagement

Business should ensure the human component isn’t lost in this digital marketing frenzy.
Consider a scenario in which an employee could be notified when a user has spent more than five minutes in front of a specific retail display or there has been a high density of users in line for a drink at a sports game or concert venue. Rather than trying to ping users to have them go find another bar, consider triggers that have an employee come over with a mobile payment system and perform line-breaking transactions. This human component may still be considered a “digital engagement,” but it won’t feel like it to the consumer.

5. Keep it fresh

Digital engagements should always be timely and relevant. Organizations can’t afford to be lazy about managing these platforms because pushing irrelevant messages will drive away customers, cause them to remove their mobile apps, and even consider competitors.
Campaigns should also create a sense of urgency—create a fear of missing out or at least ensure customers understand this immediate deal is good for only the first 100 redemptions.
Gamification is one way to keep things interesting for consumers, and it can drive additional spend as it may promise “bonus” rewards for the additional engagement. The solutions should be simple enough that they can be managed by marketing teams and not IT.
Originally posted here with Network World. Republished with permission as originating author. Also available on my LinkedIn page.

Heading into Aruba Atmosphere this year I was most excited to see Aruba’s new Niara solution in action and learn more about this product as it solves a very real need in every network. Inherently any network policy grants some sort of access to the network and users are free to work within the confines of that policy. Even using 802.1X-based authentication and dynamically provisioned VLANs, access roles, downloadable ACLs, etc. isn’t necessarily enough. Niara solves for these issues in an appealing way and lessens the workloads for SecOps teams.
Case #1: Stolen Credentials
A known valid user can operate within their policy, but what happens if they are compromised either through social engineering, weak passwords, poor password management, etc.? Niara builds a profile of what is typical behavior of a specific user, if their patterns change this will be identified by the system. Perhaps the user starts attempting to access new areas or is visiting new websites—by a change in behavior, it is possible to identify a need for a change in policy, alert the SecOps team, or eventually automate remediation or lockdown of the user. Comparing to a baseline as well as other similar users gives Niara a frame of reference for the user under evaluation.
Case #2: Malware and Viruses
Both malware and viruses are capable of changing the behavior of network attached clients, while numerous tools already exist to help combat these Niara could serve as a welcome tool to identify and isolate infected clients or in a perfect world learn about how a Day Zero Attack might attempt to compromise the network and automatically harden the network in anticipation of this attack. The combination of these capabilities along with Aruba’s open APIs using Aruba’s Exchange offers some very interesting possibilities by enabling the collection of data from ecosystem partners with a greater speciality in the malware and virus arena. Imagine a world in which your firewall vendor has detected a new type of malware, shares that data with Aruba ClearPass and Niara via APIs, syslog, SIEM, or other similar routes and then the network automatically reacts to prevent the spread of that malware at the same time you are being notified.
Case #3: Software Bugs/Anomalous Behavior
If an application is updated and begins to operate differently on the network, Niara can identify this and enable teams to understand the new behavior. New behaviors deemed as risky can be mitigated against and feedback can be provided to the company’s development team. A specific example of this was provided at the conference in a popular file share company who’s update generated unwanted traffic on the network. Niara’s machine learning was able to identify and allow this undesirable behavior to be stopped.
Aruba, a Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company opens the door to a world of possibilities with the addition of machine learning and extends those capabilities elegantly through their open architecture in Aruba Exchange. I would anticipate that this field of machine learning is going to explode in the networking world as IT teams are facing increasingly difficult security challenges and are being asked to do more with less people and less resources. Automation of detection and defense should be able to solve 75-80% of the issues out there, enabling IT to focus on the most challenging and highest value problems out there.

The WLAN Pros Conference is truly a unique experience that I look forward to all year long. Throughout the year we are inundated with vendor marketing material and embroiled in competition. WLPC is a few days where we can come together as individuals, educate each other, build the community and challenge each other to be better at our craft. This year’s conference will be in sunny Phoenix, AZ. Read more about it here. If you’ve never been before and you have an interest in Wi-Fi I urge you to make plans to attend. It is a great opportunity to network and learn from others in the field.
This environment provides a great opportunity to get up and speak about something you are passionate about. The mix of longer presentations and ten talks allow for a lot of variety and depth of topics. This year I’ve selected a topic on Healthcare wireless as my main presentation topic and then will use a Ten Talk slot to provide a sneak peak into my Bluetooth World presentation that I will be giving in March at Levi’s Stadium.

Wireless Field Day wrapped up last week with an incredible visit to Levi’s Stadium, home of my San Francisco 49ers. As both a rabid football and Wi-Fi fan, it doesn’t get any better than this to culminate an already awesome week. Aruba Networks and L…

Thursday October 1st marks day two of Wireless Field Day. Follow us live at http://techfieldday.com/event/wfd8/ and if you want to join in on the conversation, reach out to me or any of the other delegates as we can ask questions on your behalf. Follow us on twitter at #WFD8. I will be blogging about the event throughout the next two days, so stay tuned for additional information. Video recordings will be made available shortly after Wireless Field Day comes to a conclusion.
Cisco Systems (9-11am PST)
Cisco enables people to make powerful connections–whether in business, education, philanthropy, or creativity. Cisco hardware, software, and service offerings are used to create the Internet solutions that make networks possible–providing easy access to information anywhere, at any time. Cisco was founded in 1984 by a small group of computer scientists from Stanford University. Since the company’s inception, Cisco engineers have been leaders in the development of Internet Protocol (IP)-based networking technologies. Today, with more than 65,225 employees worldwide, this tradition of innovation continues with industry-leading products and solutions in the company’s core development areas of routing and switching, as well as in advanced technologies such as home networking, IP telephony, optical networking, security, storage area networking, and wireless technology. In addition to its products, Cisco provides a broad range of service offerings, including technical support and advanced services. Cisco sells its products and services, both directly through its own sales force as well as through its channel partners, to large enterprises, commercial businesses, service providers, and consumers.
Learn more at http://www.cisco.com.

Zebra Technologies (12:30-2:30pm PST)
Zebra Technologies Corporation builds actionable information and insight, giving companies unprecedented visibility into their businesses by giving physical things a digital voice. Zebra’s extensive portfolio of solutions give real-time visibility into everything from products and physical assets to people, providing very precise operational data not only about where things are, but what condition they are in. This allows business leaders to use data to make better, more informed decisions, respond, and ultimately, help businesses understand how they work, and how they could work better.
Learn more at http://www.zebra.com.

Aruba Networks (3:30-5:30pm PST)
Aruba Networks, an HP company, is a leading provider of next-generation network access solutions for the mobile enterprise. The company designs and delivers Mobility-Defined Networks that empower IT departments and #GenMobile, a new generation of tech-savvy users who rely on their mobile devices for every aspect of work and personal communication. To create a mobility experience that #GenMobile and IT can rely upon, Aruba Mobility-Defined Networks™ automate infrastructure-wide performance optimization and trigger security actions that used to require manual IT intervention. The results are dramatically improved productivity and lower operational costs.

Today marks the beginning of Wireless Field Day 8! Follow us live at http://techfieldday.com/event/wfd8/ and if you want to join in on the conversation, reach out to me or any of the other delegates as we can ask questions on your behalf. Follow us on twitter at #WFD8. I will be blogging about the event throughout the next two days, so stay tuned for additional information. Video recordings will be made available shortly after Wireless Field Day comes to a conclusion.
Cambium Networks (10-Noon PST)
Cambium Networks is a leading global provider of wireless broadband solutions that connect the unconnected. Through its extensive portfolio of reliable, scalable and secure wireless broadband point-to-point (PTP) and point-to-multipoint (PMP) platforms, Cambium Networks makes it possible for all service providers; enterprises; governmental and military agencies; oil, gas and utility companies; Internet service providers; and public safety networks to build powerful, easily sustainable communications networks. The company currently has over four million of its access and backhaul radios deployed in thousands of demanding networks in more than 150 countries. Headquartered outside Chicago and with R&D centers in the U.S., Ashburton, U.K. and Bangalore, India, Cambium Networks sells through a range of trusted global distributors.


Cradlepoint (1-3pm PST)
Cradlepoint is the global leader in cloud-managed 4G LTE networking solutions, providing business-grade and secure connectivity to distributed enterprises with hundreds or thousands of locations. Specializing in failover solutions with OOBM, M2M/IoT, transportation and Parallel Networking, Cradlepoint’s award-winning solutions are purpose built for PCI-compliant networks. Cradlepoint was the first to pioneer and fully enable high-speed LTE solutions to maximize the potential of the cloud for businesses worldwide. Cradlepoint is a privately held company in Boise, Idaho.


Ruckus Wireless (4-6pm PST)
Ruckus Wireless is a pioneer in the wireless infrastructure market, enabling carriers and enterprises to stay ahead of the exploding demand for high-bandwidth applications and services. The Ruckus Smart Wi-Fi technology redefines what’s possible in wireless network performance with flexibility, reliability, and affordability.