Are You Going Mobile?

Marketing Executives Networking Group
By Drew McLellan, on May 18th, 2011

We’ve been hearing about it for a decade as cell phones became more commonplace, but it’s finally here.  The decade we’re at the forefront of (2010-2020) is going to bring remarkable change in how we communicate with each other, with the Internet and how we use our phones to navigate our daily lives.

  • 81% of mobile device owners use them to browse the web.
  • 63% use their phone to access social networks.
  • The US population is approx. 311 million, and 22.2% of those people have smart phones today.
  • By 2020, the #1 way we will access the web is via our mobile devices.

When we are talking about this mobile revolution – what exactly are we talking about?  Let’s look at some of the more popular avenues.

If you can answer yes to one or more of those criteria, then maybe you’re the perfect candidate for an app.

Mobile Apps

Mobile apps have come into their own.  With over ten billion apps downloaded from the Apple App Store alone, there is no denying the reach and power of the mobile app – which doesn’t mean that every business needs to have one.  Wondering if your business should?  Would it:

  • Make something easier — the Walgreens app that allows you to re-order prescriptions.
  • Make something more convenient — being able to have your boarding pass on your phone to get on a plane.
  • Make something faster — news apps which bring real time coverage.
  • Make something fun – who doesn’t enjoy those angry birds?
  • Make something “buyable” – with a tap or two you can have a book sent to you.

If you can answer yes to one or more of those criteria, then maybe you’re the perfect candidate for an app.

Mobile websites

Our cell phones are always with us and always on.  In any given week, 81% of smartphone users browse the Internet and 77% of them used a search engine.  If they were looking for you, how would you website perform on that tiny screen?

You have two options here.  You can have a website that is mobile friendly or mobile optimized.  Mobile friendly means your site can be viewed because it’s built in HTML and doesn’t use Flash.  Your users will still have to zoom in, pinch and slide content around to view it.

Mobile optimized means you’ve re-configured your site to sit the screen size and elevated the content that most mobile browsers (location, hours of operation, etc) would be looking for.

Text messages

Today, there will be more text messages sent than there are people on this planet.  And that’s with over half the population not being born during this digital era.  Imagine how text messaging volume will increase when today’s 10 year olds are 30?

SMS (short message service) and MMS (multi message service) are coming into their own from a marketing perspective.  Many businesses are having incredible success in getting their customers and potential customers to opt in to a mobile or text club.

From there, creative campaigns can drive club members to special offers, videos, even conference booths.

Whether you are a B2C company or strictly B2B, mobile is not a “nice to do.”  It’s a must have that’s only going to get more pressing as time passes.