Email & Mobile

April 1, 2009
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The term Mobile means different things to different people, which is understandable considering all the capabilities the average smart phone offers. The term includes emails and SMS messages sent/received and those cool applications that make everyone drool.

We’re becoming an increasingly mobile society, according to an eMarketer article Three-Quarters of the World’s Messages Sent by Mobile. Stats include that 74% of the world’s digital messages were sent through a mobile device in January 2009 – 15% higher than January 2008. Other stats include that on average, Japan sends 40 out of 100 emails from a mobile device; in North America 69% use email on their mobile daily (the worldwide average is 43%)…


The term Mobile means different things to different people, which is understandable considering all the capabilities the average smart phone offers. The term includes emails and SMS messages sent/received and those cool applications that make everyone drool.

We’re becoming an increasingly mobile society, according to an eMarketer article Three-Quarters of the World’s Messages Sent by Mobile. Stats include that 74% of the world’s digital messages were sent through a mobile device in January 2009 – 15% higher than January 2008. Other stats include that on average, Japan sends 40 out of 100 emails from a mobile device; in North America 69% use email on their mobile daily (the worldwide average is 43%).

Don’t factor out SMS, according to a Nielson Mobile study, the typical cell user sent/received 357 text messages per month while placing/receiving 204 calls (2Q08). eMarketers are beginning to incorporate SMS into their mix, gathering cell numbers online as part of the email sign-up, including text to codes in their advertising – BravoTV has done a great job with their SMS strategy, coupling mobile notices about upcoming shows, mobile clubs, games and voting with regular emails.

The applications are growing exponentially – even if you exclude the hundreds of iPhone apps available. Delta has released a mobile check-in option and other companies have probably developed something new in the time it’s taken to read this post.

So here are a few things to keep in mind for Mobile:
1) Email – The email best practices are a little different for mobile viewers. Subject lines have to be much shorter, 20 characters or less (compared to the 30-45 characters that can be used for PC-based emails). Sizing is also a factor; a standard PC email width is 600 pixels, mobile offers 120 pixels (if you’re lucky).
2) SMS – Rules for opt-in and opt-out are different that with email, some best practices are common but for the most part they are completely different animals.
3) Applications – There is always going to be something new/cool but unless you’re offering value focus on the basics – nothing is worse than a failed app due to non-interest.
4) All Mobile – Start tracking who wants to receive updates via their mobile device – the easiest way is through a poll/survey.

Most importantly, never forget the power of a stable email program; email is your common denominator and the most accepted medium despite current evolutionary indicators.

Need more?
Search “SMS” or “Mobile” on this blog for additional tips and ideas.

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