Late last year comScore released research that indicated 30% of all mobile subscribers use their device to read email. That was almost a year ago. New numbers have yet to be published by comScore but with smartphone penetration up 40% since then the overall percent of mobile email users has surely grown significantly as well.
What doest this mean to the email marketer? Generally, it means develop and deploy a strategy to provide a good mobile email experience. And do it now.
You may be asking yourself if it is really all that urgent. Good question. The number of recipients of any company’s email newsletters/promotions who are reading on mobile devices will differ widely. It will depend on the audience you have collected in your email database. Follow the steps below to develop your plan for addressing the rise of the mobile email reader.
- Know your audience. This is key to any good strategy. If you are unsure whether you really have many mobile email readers you need to do a little research. Start by equipping yourself with data. In an upcoming campaign enable all your links with analytics that will tell you the device (e.g. computer, iPhone, Android, Blackberry) being used to follow those links. Atomic Mobile’s SmartURLs will do this for you and even re-direct visitors to your mobile site (when you have one) or main site accordingly. Contact us for more info.
- Update your email designs. If you’ve decided that you are going to accomodate the mobile email reader then learn about design techniques appropriate for mobile. There are many resources for this but you can start with ones from Melanie Attia of Inside Campaigner.
- Create a mobile website. As a mobile email reader myself I know the experience of clicking links in email that take me to a full, non-mobile website. It’s terrible. In fact I’ve learned to avoid clicking links as most companies don’t have mobile sites.
- Know how mobile impacts your results. Most mobile email clients, like many web clients, don’t automatically download images in email. For good reason, too, as most images aren’t mobile friendly and mobile users pay for the data they use. This means your open rate (if you’re using images to detect open rate) will be negatively affected and probably already is. Second, per #3 above, mobile users may not be clicking any links in your emails because the resulting experience is likely a poor one. There goes your click-through-rate as well as any downstream conversion activities you are tracking.
The bottom line? Research and recognize the growing mobility of your cutomers/email recipients, make a plan to give them a good experience and watch the performance of your campaigns start to go the other way.
Contact us now for help with mobile in your email marketing.