Last week, my article on mobile in Engage:Moms on MediaPost seemed to strike a chord with many readers and I wanted to share it with our own blog audience. It's very clear that mobile is one of the hottest buzz words right now. However, for some time, I've noticed many great articles and data points simply gloss over the definition of mobile. Are we talking about smartphones, or tablets, or both? The answer matters because people use these devices very differently.  

First, let's define this word 'mobile.' This is a term that refers to a device with the ability to connect to the Internet and move on the go with the user. Most commonly it refers to smartphones and tablets, but mp3 devices and eReaders can be mobile as well. For this article, I'm considering the former most commonly used devices. 

Second, how do consumers use these devices? People use their smartphones primarily to make calls, look up directions to a specific location, check and update social media, and do quick research on products or locations. These are all on-the-go tasks that people do while they're in between locations and not with one of their other devices (laptop or tablet). 

On the other hand, people use their tablets to stream videos, play games, browse information and content, or purchase products. Many of these tasks are done at home, often replacing the laptop. These kind of activities are more relaxing, laid back, and not time sensitive, unlike most of what consumers do with their smartphones. 

Finally, why does this differentiation matter? For marketers to reach consumers on smartphones and tablets successfully, it is essential to know when and where the devices are being used. From email marketing to e-commerce to advertising, your strategy changes knowing that consumers call on their smartphones for coupons in the grocery store and their tablets while sitting on the couch to plan their friend's birthday party. 

Learn more about how consumers use smartphones and tablets differently, and how marketers can build a mobile strategy specific to these devices in our mobile whitepaper

Posted by Katie Petrillo


mobile strategy