The 2,900,000 Text Message

In keeping with Chris’ political e-marketing coverage, the Obama campaign’s recent “Biden is our pick for VP” text message was a milestone event. Nielsen Mobile reports that an estimated 2.9 million people received the message.

Nielsen describes the release as the single largest mobile marketing event in the U.S. to date…and it offers valuable lessons to would-be mobile marketers. Some of those include (1) respect your users and get their permission as cellphones/mobile devices are one of the last areas of privacy left, (2) save texting for messages that are timely/urgent and portable, (3) consider the timing of releases to account for time zones, etc. and (4) don’t send out too many because subscribers typically have to pay their carrier for any incoming texts.

For Obama, the benefits from this effort included building anticipation for the announcement and event, delivering an urgent and timely message quickly to campaign followers, boosting their database of email addresses and cell numbers for future/other efforts, and sending a more general signal that his team “gets” technology, communication and new media.