We all like to take our foot off the gas during the summer: We sit back, relax and then floor it in the fall in hot pursuit of our revenue goals. We’ve been successful with this strategy to date, but it’s time to be revised. We accept the feeding frenzy that is “fall crush” and entails late nights, strategic scrambling and tense testing that accompanies implementing and revising various email marketing campaigns. With a new and improved Mobile 2.0 strategy, we can stop the insanity: Just a little prep work this summer can lead to meeting or beating revenue objectives in the fall.

Mobile 2.0 acknowledges that we live in a continuously growing mobile and virtual world with consumers conducting the majority of day-to-day activities on their mobile devices. Smartphone ubiquity is old news, but with safer online payment methods for consumers, faster smartphones and a new “gotta have it now” mindset, m-commerce is quickly leading the age of Mobile 2.0. In fact, m-commerce sales are forecasted to reach $100 billion this year and a recent Campaigner survey showed a 22 percent increase in mobile device purchases as a result of email marketing in 2013 from 2012. But surprisingly, nearly half of consumers (49%) have still not made a mobile purchase – where’s the disconnect?

We can’t stop the mobile waves, but we can learn to surf them. As digital marketers, we need to embrace this Mobile 2.0 concept. We are already living it: Do you pay for your coffee with cash or your phone? Do you buy items from your smartphone while at the beach or by the pool?

It’s time to start thinking “mobile first” in our professional lives as well as our personal lives. Marketers have yet to master a mobile-first strategy and respond to the mindset and needs of today’s mobile consumer. A recent UPS survey found that people prefer shopping on a computer because images are clear (or large enough), and that product information is easy to view and find. The Campaigner survey echoed this sentiment, with 60% citing “non-mobile-friendly” design as the most irritating factor of email marketing.

The solution is simple: Develop email marketing campaigns and websites specifically designed for mobile consumers, based on responsive design. And do it today, during the dog days of summer, because there is no rush or pressure (at least compared to the fall). Create, run and test your Mobile 2.0 strategies now—even while you’re sunning yourself in your lawn chair—to set yourself and your company up for success this fall. Here’s how:

1) Plan the Perfect Virtual Road Trip for Your Customers.

Summer is a time many people go on road trips—physically and virtually. The difference is that virtual road trips are conducted in minutes, if not seconds, so your content needs to be specific, targeted, short and sweet. Encourage interactions with engaging subject lines that set your customers on a distinct destination, While on their trip, make sure responsive design makes it enjoyable for customers with small screen-friendly fonts, buttons and links.

2) Limit Casual Sunday Scrolls.

In our attention deficit world, consumers have limited attention spans and aren’t out for the virtual Sunday stroll, or in this case, scroll. No one wants to read pages of text on a small screen – 22 percent of Campaigner survey respondents said that text is hard to read in marketing emails on mobile devices – so shorten and simplify your message. If customers need to scroll too much, they will walk away. Limit the content so they can go to your website (which should also be responsive), select an item and make a payment—in just a few clicks. 

3) Help Those Inflicted with Summer Sausage Fingers.

Just kidding, because when it comes to mobile devices, we all have sausage fingers when trying to work those little buttons. When designing your campaigns, ensure that the font size is small-screen-friendly and the buttons are nice and big. Again, customers will only try a few times before losing interest—very few products are worth the effort.

4) Create a Place in the Sun…for Everyone.

If the sun shines for one customer, make it shine for them all. Like with many successful campaigns, consistency is key, so be sure that your emails AND your website are based on responsive designs. Companies make the huge mistake of providing a wonderful, eye-pleasing experience on mobile devices, and then when customers go to the website to make a purchase, the font is too small to read and buttons are too small to click. Make your email marketing experiences sunny and pleasant for everyone, from beginning to end.

Summer is the time for flip-flops, sandy toes and water fights…and for creating and testing effective mobile marketing campaigns. The heat is on today in the summer, and if you plan right you can amp up that heat into hot revenue for the fall.