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Liz McMillan

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News Item

Social Network Customers to Monetize Demand

Developers Rejoice at Ease-of-Use, Rapid Deployment Using Clickatell Mobile Social Networking Solutions

Even during tough economic times, the mobile social networking phenomenon is here to stay. People want to stay connected and in touch while on the go, and the addition of text messaging to social networks makes it possible anywhere, anytime.

Especially in times of high job loss, people want to stay in touch with friends, colleagues, past employers, and others to keep up to date on job status and conversations regarding possible work opportunities. Immediately opened when received, text messaging is the fastest growing communications method in mobile social networking today. Brightkite, mig33 and Mobiluck agree -- they've chosen Clickatell as their trusted SMS provider to deliver reliable text messages to millions of their community members around the world.

Brightkite, available independently on Brightkite.com or via Facebook, is a mobile location-based social network, which allows friends to be found or find others -- a great way to meet up any time. "Finding the best party, meeting up for dinner, or meeting new people are some of the reasons customers enjoy Brightkite," commented Brady Becker, Co-Founder. "Working with Clickatell made it incredibly easy for us to implement our SMS strategy and we count on the reliability, ubiquity, and global appeal Clickatell provides. We look forward to working with Clickatell as we expand in 2009 and beyond."

As Twitter bursts into the mainstream, the social networking phenomenon continues to astound Wall Street -- billions of people engaged, yet little monetization. People won't pay for services to connect with peers, but companies are highly interested in reaching these people in new ways. Growing three times faster than the overall rate of Internet growth, social networking applications stand to attract many customers as they connect and interact with friends, family and business associates around the globe.

"Read within minutes, text messages can reach millions instantly. Research has shown, SMS is surpassing voice as the preferred way to communicate -- it's quick, easy, direct. As social sites continue experiencing phenomenal growth -- they are introducing mobile advertising and location-aware services via SMS," said Pieter de Villiers, CEO of Clickatell. "If, for example, a restaurant or retailer sent a text message offering a free beverage or point-of-sale coupon to someone passing the physical store, chances are customers would stop in for a free drink and maybe also purchase other items as well. They might also text friends, further extending the value of mobile communities. Sent to the masses via mobile social networking, retailers of all kinds could drive traffic into their store during slow times, reaching new customers through these circles, ultimately increasing the bottom line."

At pennies per message, implementing SMS is the best way to get started immediately. Using www.Clickatell.com -- the world's #1 mobile messaging self-service website -- all developers and marketers simply need to do is go to www.Clickatell.com, create an account, enter a credit card number to purchase future message quantities and then access their favorite social networking messaging solution. Clickatell has made it incredibly easy to SMS-enable any existing application. There is no need for heavy software installation, long purchase processes or complex implementation. In a matter of minutes, organizations of all sizes can rapidly deploy SMS-based mobile social strategies and campaigns. Clickatell's easy-to-use social mobile messaging solutions include seven API choices, developer tools and provide one central point to quickly integrate new SMS capabilities into existing or new offerings. And, Clickatell has years of experience and deep relationships with mobile carriers and can reach more than 775 networks in more than 200 countries around the world.

The uptake in social networking is being driven by popular global sites, including mySpace, Twitter, Facebook, Friendster, Hi5, Orkut, Bebo, and others. Further, the social networking sector is undergoing a rapid transformation as these and other community sites are embracing mobilization strategies of their rapidly growing communities to facilitate even more member interaction and collaboration. eMarketer predicts that over 800 million people worldwide will be participating in a social network via their mobile phones by 2012, up from 82 million in 2007. The global social networking market will grow to a massive $28.9 billion for revenues generated from all business models in this industry by 2012, according to Informa. Within that market, SMS is rapidly being used to mobilize the social networking experience to create greater member stickiness, usage and community growth, as well as to achieve monetization business objectives.

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