mobiThinking is pretty pleased (even a bit smug, to be honest) to kick off our series of five-minute interviews with a trio of top mobi-marketing gurus. Yahoo, Limbo and the BBC are all serious players in the mobile space, but all come at it from different, very topical angles – broadcast, search and social networking (we put each into context below). But the true test of a thought-leader is when you drag them away from their company and their sector, just for five minutes.
As though this isn’t enough, mobiThinking has also published our latest eBook: The Best and Worst of the Mobile Web.
And because we really care... the most comprehensive set of mobile-marketing links ever (in mobiThinking’s humble opinion).
Michael Bayle has been at the fore-front of mobile search since Yahoo!’s pioneering trials with mobile search marketing days back in Japan in 2004. And it’s still as hot a topic as ever [more on this later]. Read the interview.
Richard Titus may be the brand-new head of the BBC’s mobile business, but he’s clearly lived and breathed the mobile existence for a long time. And he joins at a really exciting time for BBC Mobile [see below]. Read the interview.
Rob Lawson came to Limbo from Enpocket (now part of Nokia), a company he also co-founded, making him a bit of a mobile-marketing veteran. Sorry, but we’re making you wait for his interview until Friday 5 December.
Who’s next? Well you’ll have to wait and see. Please add your recommendations to the ones we’ve had from this trio and MMA boss Laura Marriott see her in-depth interview here .
First, let’s look at the UK. The mobile site of the British national broadcaster, the BBC, already commands respect of the world-wide mobile-marketing society. It is joint-favourite with ESPN among the contributors to mobiThinking’s Best & Worst of the Mobile Web.
Meanwhile Nielsen puts the BBC News as most popular mobile site with UK consumers. The rest of the top 10 are Google Search, BBC Weather, Facebook, Windows Live / Hotmail, BBC Sport, eBay, Yahoo! Mail; Sky Sports and Gmail. Interestingly, BBC News, BBC Weather, Sky Sports and Gmail receive more mobile visitors than PC visitors.
Last week the BBC took two steps further. It has just kicked off a big – and emotive – campaign to drive traffic to the BBC News mobile site. Check out the advert here, with full details of the service on the BBC site.
The BBC is also launching live broadcasting of its two main channels – to UK residents – over the Internet and mobile Internet according to Macworld.
Second, let’s turn to the mobile search marketing and some statistics from the folks at Yahoo! In the US Yahoo! claims the top spot for mobile mail and instant messaging in the US according to comScore M:Metrics.
Yahoo! reports that mobile advertising (including search) is most keenly sought among automotive, travel, leisure, consumer packaged goods, high-tech and finance sectors.
The big battleground is mobile search. According to this comScore M:Metrics report. Mobile Search Grew 68 Percent in the U.S. and 38 Percent in Western Europe over the last year.
Yahoo! is used as the preferred or exclusive mobile search engine, by more than 80 carriers around the world with +800M subscribers use That’s before T-Mobile US signed up Yahoo for it Web2Go portal last week, following similar deals in Europe.
Even so, Yahoo! is playing catch up to Google. According to these slightly-old figures from comScore M:Metrics Google had 63 percent market share in mobile search in the US and 74 percent in the UK.
Microsoft also has ambitions in mobile search, reportedly  trying to scupper a deal between Google and US carrier Verizon Wireless.