72% of adults now on the SMS bandwagon - Reprinted from eMarketer.com
Teenagers are infamous for texting at dramatic rates—a median of 50 per day in May 2010, according to the Pew Internet & American Life Project.
But while most adults don’t approach such levels of frequency, they are increasing their adoption of the medium. In September 2009, Pew found 65% of adults sent and received text messages, a proportion that had gone up to 72% by May 2010.
Most adults who text sent only a few messages per day, and relatively few are in the hundred-plus range of nearly a third of teenagers. But adults’ median number of daily texts doubled between September and May from 5 to 10, while the mean rose from less than 30 to 39.1.
While there was no gender difference in the number of texts sent each day, there was variation by ethnicity and race: Black and Hispanic texters send and receive more messages on average than their white counterparts.
Pew also found that adults who didn’t text much were not necessarily replacing this form of communication with voice calls from their mobile phones. Those who sent few texts tended to make few calls, and vice versa.
Adults warming up to texting could be good for messaging-based marketing efforts, especially since most Americans still have feature phones, not smartphones. However, 57% of adult mobile users told Pew they had received spam or unwanted text messages—and based on the experience of email marketers, this could include opt-in messages that the users simply no longer want to receive. On a device as personal as the mobile phone, which has the potential to annoy users with unwanted disruption, marketers must keep messaging relevant and always wanted.