Simple is often best with mobile email marketing

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Simple is often best with mobile email marketing
Simple is often best with mobile email marketing
As surgeons of human desire – marketers, I mean – our task is to figure out what our consumers want and then to make sure that our digital missives are the antidote for whatever ails them, literally or metaphorically.

Mobile is a unique opportunity to reach people anywhere and anytime of the day. Mobile devices have in one sense made us less shackled to our desks, but infinitely more tied to our jobs and each other.

What makes the mobile proposition even sweeter is that you literally have to do nothing – no short codes, no long setup times and you don't cost your users money like you can with an SMS/MMS program. What you do need to do is optimize your message for the mobile landscape and that starts with understanding the anatomy of a mobile phone.

Nearly 70% of the world's population had mobile phone subscriptions in 2009, according to IBM's Institute of Business Value “Telco 2015” study. This makes it an imperative to extend email marketing campaigns to mobile audiences across the globe.

What cross-channel email promotions call for is a bit of simplicity. The most common smartphone screen appears to be 320x480 pixels, but you don't really have 480 pixels to work with. For instance, 480 pixels is the top-to-bottom size of the iPhone screen but you have to subtract 20 pixels for the status bar and 44 pixels for each of the tool bars. This leaves you with 372 pixels of actual screen.

Consider the following to optimize your mobile email marketing strategy:

Are my logo and calls to action above the fold?

If you use pre-headers or a link to a mobile version or “add to address book language” above the body of the message, how much punch is your communique losing because the content is being pushed below the fold?

Are your calls to action clear and can they be acted upon by those of us with less than piano-perfect playing fingers?

The most well-received email marketing creatives are simple. They include your logo, your call to action front, center and at the top ensuring that your audience can see and act upon the offer without squinting and hopefully without much scrolling.

Len Shneyder is senior product marketing manager at Unica, which IBM agreed to acquire. Reach him at

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