Marketers have opportunity with ‘short code’ mobile messages

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New York—A new white paper from Nielsen Mobile notes an emerging opportunity for marketers in “short code” marketing, whereby companies and their customers can interact via special abbreviated telephone numbers used for mobile phone commercial text messages, announcements and offers.

According to Nielsen, U.S. wireless subscribers in the second quarter sent or received an average of 357 text messages a month, up 24% over the previous quarter, and a 108% increase over the same quarter in 2007.

While teenagers remain the texting champions, Nielsen also noted that the typical U.S. mobile subscriber between the ages of 35 and 44 is now sending or receiving more text messages on average (236) than phone calls (223).

The marketing potential is large, Nielsen said. The U.S. ranked 11th among large countries in the use of text messaging, with about 57% of wireless subscribers having seen a text message in the previous 30 days, compared with 85% of subscribers in Sweden, 78% of subscribers in Italy, 77% of subscribers in Russia, and 76% of subscribers in Spain and the U.K.

—Christopher Hosford

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