Smartphones owners predominantly young or high-income

Smartphones have achieved deepest penetration among those under 35 years old, but age is less of a factor for those with $100,000 or more in annual income.

If you think that smartphones seem mainly to be in the hands of young adults or those with some disposable income, it is not your imagination.

New data on the penetration of smartphones by age and income find that age and income are two huge factors in whether or not you will own one, according to NielsenWire.

Consider that the overall penetration of smartphones among 20,000 mobile consumers surveyed by Nielsen in January was 48 percent. Among the 24 - 33 age set, however, the penetration was 66 percent and adoption was accelerating. Of those that had bought a new mobile device during the past three months, approximately 8 out of 10 had acquired a smartphone.

Disposable income apparently levels the playing field.

For example, Nielsen reports that people aged 55 to 64 making more than $100,000 per year were almost as likely to have a smartphone as those aged 35 to 55 who were making $35,000 to $75,000.

The adoption data should really get businesses thinking about whether or not they are building their mobile apps or targeting their mobile marketing messages at the right demographic. In other words, if you're just targeting those who are less than 35 years old, you could be missing a big opportunity.

This morning, I posted a brief case study about a small chain of restaurants based in the Chicago area, Lodge Management Group, that is using mobile marketing to great effect. When I interviewed the marketing director, we chatted about the demographic of those responding to his mobile marketing campaigns. He said while his company initially focused on 20-somethings, the mix has shifted substantially in the past year to more closely mirror Lodge Management Group's target population.

Something to ponder.

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com

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