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BizReport : Mobile Marketing : January 13, 2010

Older generations getting to grips with text messaging

Older generations are certainly getting the hang of 'new-fangled' technology such as the Internet and social networking. But now, it appears there's nowhere in the digital universe that grandparents can't go, as a report from mobile messaging solutions provider, Tekelec, discovered.

by Helen Leggatt

Recent research by Nielsen found that older generations are increasingly getting online, with data showing that the number of them using the Internet regularly has increased by 55% in the past five years.

Now older generations are getting to grips with mobile technology and texting, too. The new research by Tekelec found that 60% of people over the age of 45 were just as likely to use text messaging as they were to make voice calls. It also revealed that 44% of 35 to 44-year-olds and 14% of over-45s send more than 30 text messages every week, reports Mobile Marketer.

In fact, today texting is proving almost as popular as email as a means of communication, with 33% of overall respondents preferring email compared to 32% favoring texting, or SMS as it's often referred to.

"The importance is that text messaging is becoming prevalent among older generations, changing everything from how operators market their plans to how advertisers can reach more consumers through the mobile channel," said Ronald Cornelisse, senior manager of product marketing and mobile messaging at Tekelec.

"Brands will miss out if they only market their mobile campaigns to younger generations."

Some mobile phones have been designed with the older user in mind. Manufacturer Emporia has, for a couple of years now, brought out models that are more suited to their needs including easier to read screens, larger buttons and a distinct lack of anything too techie.

Tags: mobile marketing, older generation, SMS, text messaging

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