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ExactTarget Research on Mobile Email Provides Marketers the Foundation for Successful Strategies

INDIANAPOLIS, July 11 /PRNewswire/ -- To help marketers deal with the rapidly evolving landscape of mobile email marketing, ExactTarget, the market leader in on-demand email software solutions for permission-based email marketing, announced today the industry's first in-depth study of the current state of mobile email usage. In stark contrast to generally accepted industry perception, ExactTarget has found that today's rapidly evolving mobile user base will rarely read or act on commercial emails via mobile devices. Instead, 88 percent of users routinely review emails on a laptop or desktop after first checking via smartphones. To address this, ExactTarget recommends marketers should instead focus their messaging and designs to attract enough attention for mobile viewers to flag the email for follow up on their computers. In addition to these findings, the full set of data provides objective information based on demographic and behavioral research and also arms marketers with fundamental industry insight and direction for creating successful mobile email campaigns.

INDIANAPOLIS, July 11 /PRNewswire/ — To help marketers deal with the rapidly evolving landscape of mobile email marketing, ExactTarget, the market leader in on-demand email software solutions for permission-based email marketing, announced today the industry's first in-depth study of the current state of mobile email usage. In stark contrast to generally accepted industry perception, ExactTarget has found that today's rapidly evolving mobile user base will rarely read or act on commercial emails via mobile devices. Instead, 88 percent of users routinely review emails on a laptop or desktop after first checking via smartphones. To address this, ExactTarget recommends marketers should instead focus their messaging and designs to attract enough attention for mobile viewers to flag the email for follow up on their computers. In addition to these findings, the full set of data provides objective information based on demographic and behavioral research and also arms marketers with fundamental industry insight and direction for creating successful mobile email campaigns.

ExactTarget's research, compiled through its survey of more than 4,000 mobile phone owners, revealed that mobile email users tend to be 18 to 44 years old, are self-employed or employed full time, affluent and highly educated. However, the research also found that, while 72 percent of mobile email users have an annual household income of $100,000 or higher, the decreasing cost of smartphones and the introduction of new devices like the iPhone have begun to attract the interest of less affluent groups. According to research firm IDC, smartphone sales grew 46.6 percent between Q3 2005 and Q3 2006, representing the fastest-growing segment within the phone market. Marketers are beginning to take notice.

"While computers remain the predominant method for viewing email, the growing popularity and increasing affordability of mobile devices such as the Blackberry, Motorola's Q and the Treo is beginning to impact email marketing," said Morgan Stewart, director of strategic services at ExactTarget. "As mobile email technology rapidly changes, so do user habits. This research identifies user habits marketers need to consider as the industry develops standards for mobile email marketing."

Smartphone Usage — Commercial Email Not Urgent

According to the research, smartphone users mainly employ mobile email to stay connected and read urgent messages. Users typically spend less time viewing individual emails than they would on their home or work computers, and rarely read commercial email on their phones; limited functionality and rendering capabilities keep users loyal to their desktops and/or laptops.

Links Lose — Aim for Later Review

The survey indicates mobile email users typically do not click on links within these emails — only 54 percent have ever clicked on a link from their mobile device. Nor do they make online purchases via their smartphones. ExactTarget's survey results indicate the key to mobile email marketing is to deliver brief, interesting messages in multi-part MIME (both regular HTML and text-only versions). To that end, marketers should aim to have their messages flagged on mobile devices for later review on desktops or laptops, where users are more likely to make purchases.

Optimize Text — Special Mobile Message Unnecessary

ExactTarget found that a message developed especially for mobile email is unnecessary — text renders between 50 and 60 percent of the time when multi- part email is viewed on a mobile device. While not ideal, this rate is far better than the garbled HTML that tends to render when messages are sent as HTML only. The most successful text-only design for mobile and computer email viewing includes a brief introduction and then a link to view the message as a Webpage, according to ExactTarget's data. This also allows users to view the HTML version when they view it on their computer.

"There is no simple solution or magic wand to mobile email marketing, but ExactTarget's research dispels assumptions and provides the foundational data for marketers to build their campaigns and improve results," Stewart said. "By sending brief text messages intended to generate follow up on laptops and desktops, marketers can alleviate some of the challenges to mobile email."

For a more in-depth analysis of the research conducted by ExactTarget, please download the whitepaper, Email Marketing for the Third Screen, at http://email.exacttarget.com/mobileemailmarketing.

About ExactTarget

ExactTarget is the market leader in on-demand email software solutions for permission-based email marketing. More than 5,500 organizations worldwide, including Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield, The Home Depot, Scotts Miracle- Gro Company, Delta Faucet, CareerBuilder.com and Cold Stone Creamery, rely on ExactTarget email solutions to strengthen their customer relationships and to control email throughout the enterprise. ExactTarget is a recognized technology leader. In 2006, the company was highly ranked in both the Inc. 500 and the Deloitte Fast 500. For the last three years, ExactTarget ranked highest in market suitability by JupiterResearch based on the solution's usability, strong feature set and API. ASPnews, the world's premier source of news and analysis for and about the Application Service Provider (ASP) and Web services industry, ranks ExactTarget as one of world's 25 leading service providers for the ASP, Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Web Services, Service- Oriented Architecture (SOA) and Utility Computing industries. ExactTarget solutions meet the needs of all industry verticals and all size organizations, including SMB, corporate divisions, not-for-profits, large retail/direct marketers, agencies and enterprises. Privately owned and headquartered in Indianapolis, USA, the company has more than 30 offices spanning North America, Europe and Australia. To learn more, go to http://www.exacttarget.com.

SOURCE ExactTarget

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