How Mobile Devices Affect your Email Marketing


Posted: July 5, 2007 | Modern B2B Marketing

Just when you thought that you had your email marketing technology covered, that sending html and text versions meant that your email could be easily read by everyone in your target lists, along comes this interesting item from MarketingSherpa:

’64% of B2B decision makers read their email on mobile devices.’

That’s right… SIXTY-FOUR PERCENT. That’s a big percentage that we, as marketers, now have to consider when sending email to our lists. We saw it on a webinar, and it’s in this MarketingSherpa report.

Do you typically test your outgoing marketing emails (such as your lead nurturing pieces) on a BlackBerry, Treo or SmartPhone before sending? We decided to run an experiment here at Marketo. Jon has a Treo running PalmOS, Phil has a BlackBerry Pearl, and I have a Windows Mobile 5 SmartPhone.  (No, none of us has an iPhone yet, but hopefully its email parses html without a problem.) I created a list that included the three of us, sent a multi-part mime message to the list, and then checked each phone.

Interestingly, the BlackBerry tried to read the html, but provided the full text link information instead of just the links to click. The Palm Treo parsed the html well, but the results told us that our 2-column template (with the main text in the right column) wasn’t ideal, since the content in the left column (a couple of navigation links) was presented first. The Windows Mobile phone also did a good job with the html, but presented the same problem: the reader had to scroll down the page to see the main content.

Our results prompted us to do two things:
1) Redesign our email template to put the main content in the left column, so that it shows first on a small screen, and

2) Ensure that the template is as simple as possible. I know you’ve heard that one before (when it applies to the number of graphics and the size of the email), but it bears repeating.

Does anyone have any ideas? How have you made your emails more readable on mobile devices?

Related Resources

  • Douglas Karr

    Start with your best content since that’s what your readers will see.
    Use alternative text tags (alt tags) with images. Many clients, like Blackberry, manage images by displaying the alt tags instead.
    That’s a couple I’ve seen that work.

  • Jon Miller

    Great points, Douglass. Thanks!

  • Erica DeWolf

    This is a GREAT point that I fail to emphasize in my posts on email marketing. In a world where many people receive emails on their blackberries or mobile devices, rendering is a HUGE issue. Every company should test their email messages before sending it to their entire list, on at least one type of mobile device.
    Otherwise, your carefully crafted messages will not reach your consumers.
    Great post! Thanks!

  • kumari

    That’s a couple I’ve seen that work.
    This will help you to find a best friend

How Mobile Devices Affect your Email Marketing

Follow Us

Most Shared

Instagram Infographic

What Your Instagram Filter Says About You [Infographic]

true colors feat

True Colors: What Your Brand Colors Say About Your Business [Infographic]

Revenue Performance Management Infographic

Revenue Performance Management: Making the Top Line Top Priority [Infographic]


Killing Time: How to Destroy Your Productivity [Infographic]


The Evolution of Modern Marketing Automation [Infographic]

Top Articles

Tighten your belt!

7 Strategies for B2B Marketing during a Recession: The Definitive Guide


The Evolution of Modern Marketing Automation [Infographic]


Big List of B2B Marketing Blogs

The ROI of Paid Social Media Advertising

The ROI of Paid Social Media Ads

100th blog post

Marketo’s 1,000th Blog Post: Our Modern Marketing Definition Revisited