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RISMEDIA, August 6, 2011—Consumers worldwide have been quick to embrace the concept of a tablet computer. As brands start to explore how best to reach people via this nascent medium, JWT, a marketing communications brand, outlines best practices for marketing on the tablet.

JWT’s August trend report includes 10 actionable recommendations for brands, with case studies to help illustrate these ideas.

“For marketers, it’s been a scramble to get a handle on how consumers are using this new device and how best to engage them through this portal,” says Ann Mack, director of trend spotting at JWT. “Tablets are used quite differently than either PCs or smartphones. The focus tends to be on leisure—tablet consumers tend to be less interested in getting things done than in having some fun.”

The best practices highlighted in the JWT Tablet Checklist:

1. All around the house: Traveling along from kitchen to couch to bed, tablets put consumers at the center of their home entertainment experience. Consider them an all-access pass to a consumer’s home and know your brand may be called up at any time.

2. Do and discover: Tablet in hand, users swipe and tap in search of a new experience. Brands that implement tablet technology might find tablet users more responsive and generous with their time than mobile consumers on the go.

3. Tackle a broad audience: Audiences are broadening—tablets are no longer the exclusive province of early adopters from the media and tech worlds. And people who use their computers primarily for media consumption, email and social networking will see the tablet as a lower-cost alternative to a laptop.

4. Look beyond apps: The bigger screen offers a more pleasant Web surfing experience than smartphones, so a tablet-optimized site might be your best bet. Meanwhile, content streams are everywhere, offering licensing and advertising opportunities.

5. Support your investment: Tablet users have a whole world of media choices literally at their fingertips. The only way consumers will know what your offering is out there is if you ensure they find it—then keep it on their radars with free or premium upgrades.

6. Be social offline: Within households, tablet usage is fluid. Families and friends pass it around, sharing information and experiences and collaborating on purchase decisions. This gives marketers a valuable entry into households and makes evangelists out of tablet users.

7. Make it perfect—then make it better: Tablet users demand more than they would from glitch-prone personal computers or websites. To ensure users a great experience, have a nimble team in place to fix flaws and create a long-term roadmap that includes upgrades and refreshed content.

8. Simplify: Include only the technology that enhances your message and improves functionality. Bells and whistles may catch users’ attention, but once the novelty wears off, they’ll be seeking substance.

9. Define your goal: Consumers can’t commit to a long-term relationship with every app—some are keepers, others are novelties. Will your app be one arm of a larger campaign or an investment in itself?

10. Reinvent the experience: Adjust according to the medium while retaining your core message.

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