iPad 2

I didn’t get an original iPad. Despite all of the hype and a general desire to possess the latest and greatest in tech, I held off thinking that they would eventually put a camera on it. I did, of course, buy the iPad 2.

The more I play around with it, the more I realize that every ounce of online marketing should be positioned around it and other tablets. I know it’s crazy, but hear me out.

Rip on me after you’ve at least scanned the article. It’ll be short.

If It Works on the iPad…

Up and down compatibility is always a challenge. Do you gear for the mass populace (which is still doing most of their surfing from desktops and laptops) or do you position your marketing efforts around the middle and make it easier to move up or down? I am choosing the latter. If a website, blog, social media marketing campaign, or any other aspect of internet marketing appears nicely and navigates properly on an iPad, it will work on the more robust platforms such as the standard desktop.

Unlike big-screen advertising, an iPad-positioned piece of marketing will normally be mostly accessible from a smartphone. If you can see it on 7 inches, you can probable see it on 3 inches.

This means that you need to:

  • Avoid Flash. It’s not like the plague. It is the plague. HTML5 is coming and this is one cold war that Adobe is not going to be able to win.
  • Avoid large files and images. If your marketing campaigns rely on visuals, avoid slow loads. People won’t wait if they’re on 3G internet. Load times and slow moving sites will turn tablet and smartphone users away.
  • Use big buttons for calls-to-action. One thing that is extremely challenging on tablets and more so on smartphones is clicking on links or small, tightly-bundled buttons. Think “fat fingers” instead of “accurate mouse”.

Local is Becoming Everything

Google knows it. Apple knows it. Even Microsoft knows it. Facebook and Twitter have known it for a while.

The five major companies who, through hardware, software, and websites, have the greatest impact on your internet marketing understand that the world is growing more and more mobile. It’s an odd contradiction with people shifting towards home offices more, but it’s happening. People access their data, find information, and interact with the online world from a local level more than ever before and it continues to head in that direction.

Tablets and smartphones are geo-meccas of localized marketing. Even if you’re a nationwide or worldwide brand, you must generate a local presence everywhere – a tough task to accomplish without the right strategy.

Technology is Rightsizing

Certain things will continue to get smaller as technology improves. Memory capacity goes up while memory storage devices get smaller, for example.

Other things are now finding their grove. Tablets, for example, will fluctuate in size from 5 inches up to 12 inches and everywhere in between, but they won’t be getting smaller any time soon. The human eye and our fat fingers demand a certain level of space to work properly. As a result, we’re at that point of “rightsizing” on devices. They may get lighter, but screen size is likely at its smallest point.

Now that we know this and as the world adjusts from the 15 inch laptop monitor to the 8 inch tablet, we can position our marketing to work nicely within this constraint. The good old debate about the proper size or automatic sizing of websites is moot.

Think Forward

With this information and a little critical common sense on your part, you should come to the same conclusion. Position your marketing efforts within a tablet world even if most of your customers do not own tablets. At one point not too long ago, most of your customers did not have computers with high-speed internet access. That didn’t last long. The adoption of tablets and smartphones points is going to continue to increase rapidly until most of your customers do have them. You need to be ready. The future is now.

Written by JD Rucker
+JD Rucker is Editor at Soshable, a Social Media Marketing Blog. He is a Christian, a husband, a father, and founder of Dealer Authority. He drinks a lot of coffee, usually in the form of a 5-shot espresso over ice. Find him on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.