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By: Kate Simmons

As little as a few years ago, mobile advertising probably wouldn’t have been mentioned as a main channel for effective marketing. Smartphones have only flooded the market in the last decade or so, and up until now there hasn’t been convincing evidence to suggest that focusing a marketing campaign on mobile technology is worth the effort.

Recently though, a barrage of data has been released that explicitly identifies the ways in which mobile phone usage is changing the way advertising campaigns will have to be run in coming years. What this means specifically for the marketing industry remains to be seen, but adaption is inevitable if your campaign is going to succeed in the new “mobile frontier.”

The Undeniable Truth

There may be some initial resistance to adaptation, and that’s perfectly understandable. Changing your methods requires some effort and an initial investment, and you may not know exactly where to begin. But the marketing industry is all about dynamism and reacting to the marketplace, and this data presents a clear and undeniable reality that you must know how to use to your advantage if you’re going to have high conversion rates and high sales.

In 2014, mobile internet usage will overtake desktop internet usage. That should tell you just about everything you need to know. But there’s more.

In addition to the prevalence of cell phones, their utility as advertising outlets has strong statistical backing as well. 90% of cell phone users have their phone “within arm’s reach” at all times, according to the above infographic, and 75% of these people use their smartphones for shopping. This data presents a compelling illustration of how mobile technology and communication will become the new arena for marketing campaigns. In fact, they already are. And that’s why you need to start thinking about how to shift your strategy to fit the new paradigm.

Increased Mobile and Tablet Usage

Let’s take a look at a screenshot from a popular health blogging website:

1

The first thing to notice about this—if you’ve remained staunchly unconvinced about the emergence of mobile web-browsing thus far—is the remarkably small gap between desktop and mobile visits. The tablet is lagging a bit behind, but this isn’t surprising for a device that’s really only been on the popular market for a few years.

Notice, too, that although mobile devices have a high number of visits, they compare poorly to the desktop and tablet when it comes to average duration of visit and pages/visit. Why could this be? Most likely it has to do with the inconvenience of having to read a page that is not optimized for mobile viewing. This could mean a number of things, but the largest part of an effective mobile marketing strategy—whether it involves mobile web marketing, app-based marketing, SMS messaging, push notifications, or anything else—is creating a user-friendly experience.

Formatting to Scale

The most important thing to keep in mind when looking to make sure your landing page is mobile-friendly is its scaling. An astounding 45% of businesses do not have a mobile-optimized site, something that should be changing rapidly—you don’t want to be left behind. If the scale of the landing page on a mobile device is out of whack, you’ll see a lot of short average visits, like what you see in the chart above.

Text, font style, and size of links/buttons are all important factors as well. If the customer is genuinely interested in your outreach, but they can’t click on the promotional link because it’s too tiny, or they have to scroll endlessly through text to get to the bottom of a page, they’re likely to give up pretty quickly.

Mobile devices, with their convenience and accessibility are becoming the new norm for online activity. For the marketing community, this means it needs to be addressed as the new frontier of online marketing. There’s no more times to waste—get your businesses focused on its strategies for mobile campaigning today.

Kate Simmons is a freelance writer and blogger on topics related to digital advertising, social media marketing, and mobile marketing. Keep an eye out for more of her articles on Twitter.

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