As the leader of a business, a constant concern is always increasing revenue. Of course the two primary ways to do this are to either increase the revenue current customers provide, or to increase your total number of customers. The simplest and most direct way to reach your audience, and allow them to reach back, is through online media. Continuing this 5 article series, I hope to enlighten you on the 5 most important facets of online media and how to leverage them to benefit your business.
Today we’re focusing on mobile media and devices. If you’d like to catch up, you can catch last month’s article on email marketing click here.
A phone used to just be a phone. You pick it up, dial, talk, and hang up. We all know those days are long gone. Mobile technology is one of the most rapidly progressing industries in the world. As more and more inventions are applied to the realm of mobile devices and cell phones, more and more users across the globe are using them; from basic cell phones allowing just talk and text, to 3 and 4G smart phones which have the ability to do everything from surf the web, play video, music and games to email, chat, post to social media and more.
While many businesses are just adapting to web on PC; using email, setting up websites and social media accounts, the internet has continued to root itself deeper into our daily lives, and much of that penetration stems from mobile phones. Your business has to be prepared to take advantage of mobile usage, and those who adapt early will have the edge over their competition when it comes to reaching this large, and constantly growing, audience. As of February 2010 it is estimated that 4.6 billion people currently use cell phones, that’s about 60% of the entire worlds’ population!
Still not impressed? Maybe these cell stats will shock you:
- Phones outnumber PCs by about 5 to 1 (and growing)
- 38% of Chinese internet usage is from a mobile phone
- Over 30 million users access Facebook thought a mobile phone each month
- There is over 100,000 hours of video recorded on cell phones each day
- Over 200,000 iPhone apps have been created, and 172,886 are currently available
- Over 1.6 trillion text messages were sent in 2009
Clearly the mobile market is one that will continue to grow. It is important that as you embrace the medium, you don’t take the path of least resistance and just throw your current website into a smaller frame or column layout and call it a day. Create, or hire someone, to create a mobile version of your website specifically designed with mobile users in mind. Place content that a potential customer on the run would need in easy to access spots. Make it simple for users to get a hold of your company – being the easy alternative to your competitor will give you the upper hand and bring in more business.
Below I’ve listed some of our favorite tools for testing, tracking and building for the mobile web:
Ready.Mobi – Ready.mobi test your website to see how compatible it is with mobile devices. The service is free, and gives you a report card on your site’s performance, as well as the chance to view your site on different devices. They also show markup and error reports. It is a great way to test your current site to see how friendly it is, or to test the mobile version of your website to ensure it is on par with your expectations.
Motally – Motally is the google analytics of mobile media. They give you the ability to track your mobile website, as well as mobile games and apps. The dashboard allows you to sort visitors by device, carrier, location and more. It also gives you the ability to see real users vs bots and crawlers, ensuring your data isn’t skewed by including non-human users.
Wirenode – Wirenode is a simple web based service that allows you to create a simple mobile site using their build in editor. Their basic package allows you to create a site on a blank.wirenode.mobi domain name, but the paid version will allow you to create pages for other custom domains.
With the speed the mobile space moves at, you’re greatest edge in using mobile media may very well be the ability to stay on top of it. New developments in technology mean new services, tools, handsets applications and more are popping up every day. I’d recommend MobileCrunch, and offshoot of TechCrunch, and IntoMobile to get you started.
What mobile stat most surprises you?
Author Chris Yoko is the president of Yoko Consulting, an interactive marketing firm that helps clients make the most of their web presence, from website development and social media to email and mobile marketing.