Mobile Marketers Should Be Thankful For…

It’s Thanksgiving Day in the United States. And some kind of long weekend holiday in Japan, I vaguely recall. No matter where they’re located, though, mobile marketers around the world have much to be thankful for. Even Canadians, who had their own T-day last month.

Holiday revenue growth for smartphones. According to the consulting firm Oliver Wyman, sales of smartphones are expected to grow nine percent during the shopping season. This isn’t just good news for the mobile industry–it’s one of the very few bright spots in the report. (Traditionally popular electronic gifts like flat-screen TVs, PCs, digital cameras, and music players are all going to suffer from consumer cutbacks, Oliver Wyman predicts.)

No hike on outgoing SMS–yet. It’s Turkey Day Eve and Verizon still hasn’t implemented the three-cent increase on outbound commercial SMS messages. The carrier has tried to do damage control after a slew of negative publicity, so the rate hike just might be out. Then again, a Verizon representative wouldn’t confirm either way when I asked her about it earlier this month.

More than 200 million will use mobile coupons. According to Juniper Research, mobile coupons will be redeemed by more than 200 million consumers in 2013, with North America and Western Europe accounting for 20 percent of those users. Most of these are SMS coupons–that is, the vouchers are delivered by the simplest message platform that’s on the vast majority of phones.

Multi-talented phones becoming more democratic. This year has seen an improved iPhone, the first Google mobile, and the two new BlackBerrys aimed at consumers. While these are all still somewhat pricey, I have every confidence that the influx of touchy smartphones is going to have a trickle-down effect, resulting in handsets that more budget-conscious consumers can enjoy. And that means marketers will be more able to reach audiences via cell phones.

Anything I missed? Leave a comment and tell us all!