• Responsive Design: This tactic is often described as a "build once, deploy everywhere" approach. In theory, this is true, but the practice of executing responsive design websites requires more effort than many marketing managers anticipate when first starting out.
The design effort requires you to first decide how many "break-points" you will support. A break-point is essentially a screen size (or range) that you will specifically design a layout for. So, if you want the site to automatically adjust its layout to support desktop, tablet and mobile devices differently, you have at least three layouts to consider.
You can get more granular in your design, breaking mobile and tablet devices into subcategories based on size (i.e., small, medium and large), but this means a new layout for each subcategory. While this can provide consumers with a layout that is tailored to the screen they chose to use, it can also increase the cost and time it takes to deliver.
Choosing to ignore mobile consumers when designing your website is not really an option. At the same time, the choices you make in the way you support your mobile consumers can lead to costs and timeline extensions that you just weren't prepared for.
It is best to do a little research, consult with an expert in the field and assure that you establish appropriate expectations. Select the approach you will take based on the time and budget that you have, but don't ignore the relationship you want to establish with your growing mobile consumer base.
Greg Hoy is VP of mobile solutions at New York-based mobile engagement platform provider Hipcricket, Inc. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mobile is going to continue to grow as will its use as a way for brands to interact with their customers. However, the mobile device is far more personal than your email inbox. Fortunately, there are ways to implement a mobile marketing strategy that delivers relevant information that your customers want to receive. By understanding how your customers want to engage with you will help you build loyalty and in turn, help you see faster returns on your marketing investment.
Greg is a 12-year mobile industry veteran and vice president of mobile solutions at Hipcricket, Inc., where he's responsible for the vision and strategy to deliver consumer experiences that increase mobile engagement and lifetime value across mobile messaging and advertising, mobile websites, social media and branded apps