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Making Way for the Mobile Revolution

responsive web design example

The Making Media Connections conference website boasts a responsive web design.

Guest post by Marissa Wasseluk, opinions are that of the author.

When a stranger asks you to use your phone, what are the chances you’d wholeheartedly pass it to them? Personally, I have trouble passing my phone to good friends without trepidation. A phone is an object with deep personal attachment. It’s your personal connection to the rest of the world – the communications tool you carry with you nearly all the time.

If you’re reading this blog in America, there’s a 50% chance that the phone in your pocket is a smartphone. Recent studies show that half of American adults own a smartphone, which means that half of American adults are regularly carrying an Internet browser, audio and video recording devices, games, and social networks on their person

Given these statistics, it is estimated that by 2015, most interactions with the web will occur on a mobile deviceSo in order to stay ahead of the curve, now would be a good time to consider incorporating mobile-friendly messages into your organization’s overall communications strategy.

Here are some things to consider when making your communications mobile:

  • Design your website to be “responsive”
    Responsive web design is a web design approach that aims to create sites that adapt the layout to the viewing platform (tablet, computer, mobile phone) for easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling. This is achieved by using fluid, proportion-based grids, & flexible images. You can tell a site is responsive when you resize a web browser and the website content continually fills the screen.
  • Make your content interactive
    Focus on action; what do you want your users to do? Sign up for your e-newsletter? Donate? Define your goals and make your call to action. Make it 
    obvious, and make it easy. 
  • Keep your content simple
    Small screens mean less time reading, more time skimming. Text-heavy content is less likely read. 
  • Get Personal
    Every social media platform can be done accessed by a mobile device, so remember that your social media efforts are already a part of your mobile strategy.

More resources and tips on utilizing the mobile web are available from the Knight Digital Media Center.

The rise of mobile technology not only changes the way you consume content, but also the way you create it. Charlie Meyerson, freelance mobile journalist and moderator for our Mobile Storytelling panel at Making Media Connections had an astute observation about mobile technologies reshaping the way we tell stories:

 

 

It’s true that there’s an app for just about everything, and digital storytelling is no exception. There are apps that will allow you to take and post short videos, create slideshows, record audio, blog – any tool a journalist can think of using to tell a story is available on a mobile platform!

There is no doubt that mobile technology will revolutionize the way we send and receive messages, and at the rate this communications movement is advancing, it might seem difficult to keep up. But with a little practice and research, you’ll be a mobile mogul long before the mobile revolution!

At Making Media Connections this June, we’ve lined up experts in this field to further discuss what tools you’ll need to create your content on the go, and what to keep in mind for your mobile audience. Join us! 

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Category: Messaging & Framing, news future, Web Stuff

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