Mobile First. Obviously.

Here’s a tip for choosing a marketing agency. If, at any time, you hear someone say “We have to plan for mobile—that’s where everything’s going,” I want you to get up and walk out. Then I want you to call me because you’ve discovered a wormhole back into 2007 and I have a few things I’d like to tell my past self.

Mobile is not where everything’s going. It’s where everything is. In the United States, 71% of the minutes we spend online are spent on a mobile device. A year ago this week, mobile internet usage surpassed desktop. Today, mobile accounts for at least 55% of all web traffic—and we say “at least” because those figures are changing (and growing) every day.

It’s a trend that’s not going to reverse itself—we’re a culture addicted to our smartphones, and we use them for everything from entertainment to research to communication (some of us even use them to make a phone call every now and then). Mobile devices are how we read, learn, search, and shop. We check our phones dozens and dozens of times each day. Mobile devices dominate and define how we interact with the world.

As marketers, this means that mobile is a powerful tool. 88% of consumers who search for a type of local business on their mobile device call or visit that business within 24 hours. Ensuring that you’re meeting people where they are at the moment they’re looking for you, with content that’s easy to read, watch, or otherwise consume on a smartphone, is absolutely vital.

Whether we’re designing apps or websites, sending out emails, serving up ads, or creating videos, we have to assume that it’s all going to be consumed on a smartphone or tablet. The days of designing for desktop first and then optimizing for mobile as an afterthought are long gone. We’re rapidly approaching the day when we won’t even be designing for mobile first—we’ll be designing for mobile exclusively. And at Zipie, we work hard to make sure we’re designing messages and marketing strategies that work for the way people are seeing them, not the way we wish they were seeing them.

Working with people’s actual behavior is one of the most important aspects of our job, and it’s one we take very seriously. We know people are seeing our work on their phones (you’re probably reading this on a phone right now). That’s why we develop strategies and designs that are mobile-first.

So get rid of any marketing agency that’s still talking about things “going mobile.” They’re years behind in an industry that shifts drastically day by day and month by month. It’s 2017—we have to start with mobile and go from there. That’s how we do things here at Zipie.

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