The mobile age has already brought about a number of key changes in the way contemporary companies operate. Smartphones and tablets are allowing employees to do their work in more flexible ways than ever before, especially when combined with cloud services that allow mission-critical data and applications to be utilized from anywhere an Internet connection is available.
In light of the major changes the mobile trend is driving within today's businesses, it can be tempting for companies to forget that the majority of uses for smartphones and tablets are still consumer-focused. The popularity of these tools in the workplace is based on the convenience that they bring to people's personal lives, and as mobile devices have grown more popular over the years, they've also come to play an increasingly large role in the way many individuals coordinate their daily activities and maintain their relationships.
Consumers are spending great chunks of time plugged into their phones or tablets each day, and mobile platforms have become one of the chief ways in which customers interact with brands. This means that effective marketing strategies for small business have to take mobility into consideration. The question is: What differentiates mobile channels from the desktop, and how can marketers factor in both platforms at the same time?
One of the key differences between customer experience on mobile devices versus computers is how visual materials appear on the smaller screens of smartphones and tablets. What looks good on a laptop might not come across clearly and readably on an iPhone. As such, ensuring that consumers can engage with your small or mid-sized business no matter what device they're using requires you to design your marketing materials with mobile-friendliness in mind.
In a blog post for Marketing Mag, Ryan Bonnici, head of marketing for Salesforce ExactTarget, noted that mobile email, in particular, should be a focus for companies' efforts to drive engagement.
"By optimizing email for mobile devices, you can create positive customer experiences and increase conversion rates," wrote Bonnici.
In this effort, many companies have turned to responsive design, an coding system that leverages HTML5 to create emails layouts, Web pages and other online content capable of adapting to the parameters of any screen on which they're viewed. This way, you only have to create marketing materials once, and they'll be compatible with a multitude of devices. Furthermore, Platform-as-a-Service offerings provide collaborative, streamlined cloud hosting environments for your development and design staff to craft compelling visual content that will look good on mobile screens.