Mobile Wallet: Disrupting a 17th Century Way of Doing Business

Innovative Use Cases for Mobile Wallet, Series 1 of 5

At Urban Airship, our commitment to our customers is one of the most important tenets we hold. This translates to our approach in working with our customers — ensuring that they get the best expertise, advice, and use of our technology set.

With our mobile wallet solution, Urban Airship Reach, we practice this very same philosophy, both externally with our customers and in-house among ourselves. As we move from paper to a digital world, we’ve been able to help customers like Alaska Airlines, take their “Print at Home” approach to a mobile friendly, “Add to Apple Wallet” solution. Other companies such as GameStop have upgraded their plastic loyalty cards to digital versions, aka mobile wallet. In the same vein, at Urban Airship, we’re moving from paper business cards to mobile wallet business cards.  

Here Come Digital Business Cards

Tracing traditional business cards back to the 17th century, while the design aesthetics may have changed, the concept has remained the same. The traditional business card is a self introduction that includes information on how to reach you. The new digital version, disrupts the traditional uses of business cards, delivering more capabilities and improving the ways one can be reached.

Sharing and Scanning Made Simple

By creating a digital version of my business card on mobile wallet, I can easily share my information without adding to the paper clutter. First, through iOS’ built in capability, when you click on the “+” icon in the bottom left hand corner, you can share wallet items via MMS, email, AirDrop and more.​

While this is a simple and easy way to share a business card, this same feature can be used for sending concert tickets to a group — without having the hassle of emailing a PDF version, or having to print at home.  Everyone gets their tickets ahead of time and doesn’t require coordinating a meeting at the entrance, especially with those who always tend to be fashionably late.

Another great feature that many people may not aware of is the built-in QR reader for mobile wallets. If you click on the “+” to the right of “passes”, there’s a “Scan Code to Add a Pass.”  Because the reader is already there, any business card with a QR code can automatically add a digital version of the business card to the recipient upon scanning. In essence, anywhere you display a QR code, you can add a mobile wallet item. This is good news for retail, CPG, food & bev, travel & hospitality — essentially, great for any company looking to have mobile friendly, digital versions of their loyalty card, coupons, gift cards, etc.


Better With Location​

Finally, one of the coolest ways in which I use my digital business card is to leverage our location aware technology. This allows me to do very targeted geomarketing at a personal level. By tying my mobile wallet business card to a beacon that’s placed on my keychain, I am able to alert my clients via a lock screen notification when I am nearby.​​

This comes extremely handy at conferences where I’m trying to meet with clients. Upon sending them a mobile wallet confirmation pass, clients are alerted that I am in the proximity. This makes looking for a specific person much easier in a sea of attendees.  

With location based targeting, there are so many opportunities. One national theatre chain has received numerous requests from their customers to simplify how they use their loyalty card. Today, when you go to the ticket booth or concessions stand, you have to pull out your phone, unlock it, find the app, navigate to the rewards section (potentially log in) and then scan…whew. With beacons, a loyalty card would automatically get displayed on the lock screen, right at the point of action. A simple swipe on the notification (Apple watch users don’t even have to pull their phones out) and the loyalty card is brought to the foreground, making it much easier, friendlier and seamless to use.

And with that, we’ve brought our business cards here at Urban Airship from the 17th century to the 21st! The ways to use mobile wallets are truly endless. Going mobile is a practice, not just something to preach and aspire to. Get inspired with innovative mobile wallet use cases, or get started today with a free trial of Urban Airship Reach.