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The Mobile Marketing Association claims that mobile marketing budgets will jump 26% this year, despite the fact that overall marketing spend will fall 7%, reports MediaBuyerPlanner.

While the mobile medium will still snare just 1.8% of total marketing budgets, total spend will grow from $1.7 billion this year to $2.16 billion in 2010, according to new research from the MMA. Half of brands and agencies polled by the group said they were experimenting with some type of mobile marketing; SMS text campaigns are the most common, followed by mobile websites and mobile email marketing.

The internet appears to be the medium with which marketers are most often integrating their mobile efforts. Mobile internet access increased 36% in the US last year, and the number of Americans (ages 13+) with mobile internet access is 18 million, according to Netpop. Globally, that number is 54 million.

Despite the growing use of the mobile web, Netpop found that slow connections and extra fees are still the primary barriers to both increased use (among current users) and adoption (among non-users).

Mobile advertising is believed to be effective in part because it reaches consumers on-the-go, shopping or engaging in other activities outside of their homes. A Universal McCann research study on smartphone usage patterns found that more than a third of high-use smartphone users respond to mobile advertisements. The study found that smartphone users are clicking on ads (53%), requesting more information or a coupon (35%) and making purchases via their handsets (24%). Some 82% of respondents report they use mobile devices at work. 81% use them while shopping.

Local mobile advertising will be the next hot trend, particularly in terms of local mobile search, BIA’s The Kelsey Group predicts. Local mobile ad revenue will hit more than $3.1 billion in 2013, up from $160 million last year. Mobile search will reach $2.3 billion. Local searches made up 27.8% of all searches in 2008, but are expected to hit 35.1% in 2013.

Local search will make up more than half of mobile advertising (56%) though local search will only make up just over 35% of all searches, The Kelsey Group said.

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