Erick Barney’s ‘One Thing’ (or Perhaps his Lifeline) is his Smartphone

Been missing your “One Thing” posts? After a brief hiatus we are back with more of the Q&A’s you’ve learned to love and this time we bring you a man who isn’t afraid to say he loves a nice Harley. Ok, we’re guessing. Maybe he’s a Kawasaki guy. In fact, now we’re wondering why we never asked! Erick – can you clarify, please?!

No matter – the real point is that Erick Barney, VP of Marketing for Motorcycle Superstore, can’t live without his smartphone. Who can? But he’s got a better reason than flicking a few Angry Birds. As an online marketer, he sees his smartphone as more than just a gadget but an extra arm to do his work on the go in a job where the rate of multi-tasking is off the meters. He thinks he may actually not be able to live without it…

Erick Barney

If this is your first foray into the “One Thing I Can’t Live Without” series, here’s a brief: our “One Thing” series reveals one thing someone in your industry can’t work without. We’re talking about anything that your colleagues — retailers or multichannel retail solution providers — can’t do their jobs without. And we’re taking that beyond the obvious.

The goal is to bring you some tactical tips straight from the experts’ mouths. Hopefully one or two of them will help you out in unexpected ways. Without further adieu, we bring you Erick’s, “One Thing I Can’t Live Without … ”

1. As an online marketer and retailer, what’s something you can’t live without? And we don’t mean coffee. We mean anything from a technology tool to a partner to a cool trick you do on Excel to a coworker…

As an online marketer, I can’t live without my mobile smartphone. I believe this qualifies as a technology tool, a partner and a virtual coworker. Not so sure about ‘a cool trick,’ but I’ve got some really cool apps.

2. Can you explain what this is – if necessary?

My mobile is my virtual leash, my lifeline, my report console, my travel companion, my entertainment, my banker, my shopping mall and so much more. Thanks to Google and Facebook, my phone seems to know me better than I do. As long as it continues to make good decisions for me, I’ll be ok with that.

3. Why can you NOT live without this?

Like most people on the planet, I’ve become dependent on my mobile. As the VP of Marketing for a progressive company, my job has taken the concept of multi-tasking to an extreme that wouldn’t be possible to manage without the ability to stay connected. I accidently left my phone at home the other day and nearly died of an anxiety attack, so it really may be possible that I can’t live without it.

4. How often do you use it and how long have you been using it?

I use my mobile smartphone more than I’m comfortable to admit. I took the cell phone plunge back around 2000 and I can’t imagine life without it. I often wonder how we managed to coordinate those huge keg parties in high school without cell phones. How did everyone always seem to end up at the same plan B when the cops broke them up?

5. If lightning struck tomorrow and you suddenly didn’t have this one thing, what would you do to improvise?

If it’s an option, I would go buy another one and go through the extreme anguish of realigning all my aps and settings. If you mean lightning struck and destroyed all mobile phones, I think I would suggest going back to print catalogs and direct mail.

6. How can other people get this too?

Well, first you have to profile yourself as either an iPhone or non-iPhone user. Then you have to drive about 50 feet to the nearest cell phone store. If you pass it, don’t worry, you’ll find another one about 50 feet further down the road.

BONUS: And what’s the non-work related thing you can’t do your job without? This is where the coffee, or anything else comes in…

My daily “super food” smoothie.