MMA’s 1st cross-carrier best practices with Verizon, AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile USA

Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) logoThe Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) (www.mmaglobal.com) announced that the four largest U.S. wireless service providers – Verizon Wireless, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile USA – have agreed to incorporate their mobile marketing guidelines within the MMA’s best practices. This industry-first agreement is a milestone toward the continued growth of mobile marketing, a dramatic reduction in the costs of launching mobile marketing campaigns, faster time to market for campaigns and improved consumer satisfaction by improving the consistency and efficiency of mobile marketing campaigns across the four major US wireless service providers.

The agreement underscores the industry’s commitment to work towards standardized marketing practices which will improve consumer satisfaction and understanding of mobile marketing campaigns. In addition to the four largest US wireless service providers, there was substantial help in securing this agreement from the major aggregators, brands and content owners. In specific, VeriSign, Neustar, Limbo, and Thumbplay, all played critical roles in the process.

Under the agreement, the four companies, all MMA members, will incorporate their individual mobile marketing guidelines and codes of conduct – known as “carrier playbooks” – into a unified document to be maintained by the MMA. As a result, the operational efficiencies for the industry is upward of $200 million annually. The MMA will work with each carrier, as well as other industry partners, to craft the unified best practices, which will have five key benefits:

• Promote a consistent consumer experience including standardizing key consumer disclosures

• Enhance efficiencies in running short code programs • Accelerate the time to market for mobile campaigns

• Ensure monitoring programs and audit results are more consistent

• Reduce operational costs across the mobile marketing ecosystem

The MMA’s Consumer Best Practices Committee will review the first draft of the document in early April. The document will be finalized and released to the public by the end of June 2009. “AT&T, Sprint Nextel, T-Mobile USA and Verizon Wireless together serve the vast majority of all U.S. wireless customers,” said MMA president and CEO Mike Wehrs. “By working with the MMA to create an industry-standard set of guidelines, these four carriers are playing a pivotal role in enabling the mobile marketing opportunity for years to come.

The cost reductions of $200 million or more clearly proves beneficial to the entire industry, especially given today’s economic challenges. We definitely see this as a win-win solution for the entire ecosystem.”

“For Verizon Wireless, it all comes down to customer experience. The MMA’s approach will help provide understanding and set expectations, which will lead to improved experience,” said Dave Burmester, Director, Messaging Services, Verizon Wireless “As a leader in mobile marketing solutions, Sprint believes that the MMA best practices are critical for the health of the mobile media ecosystem, starting most importantly, with providing customers with a consistent, user-friendly experience,” said Len Barlik, VP of Wireless and Wireline Services at Sprint Nextel. “The MMA’s unified best practices are an important step in streamlining the processes and reducing barriers and cost to enter the direct-to-consumer market,” said Venetia Espinoza, T-Mobile Director of Mobile Apps and Partner Programs. “These changes are important for the ecosystem but will also foster the development of new and innovative mobile services for consumers.”

About Verizon Wireless Verizon Wireless operates the nation’s most reliable and largest wireless voice and data network, serving more than 80 million customers. Headquartered in Basking Ridge, N.J., with more than 85,000 employees nationwide, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE: VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). For more information, visit www.verizonwireless.com. To preview and request broadcast-quality video footage and high-resolution stills of Verizon Wireless operations, log on to the Verizon Wireless Multimedia Library at www.verizonwireless.com/multimedia.

About Sprint Nextel Sprint Nextel offers a comprehensive range of wireless and wireline communications services bringing the freedom of mobility to consumers, businesses and government users. Sprint Nextel is widely recognized for developing, engineering and deploying innovative technologies, including two wireless networks serving more than 49 million customers at the end of the fourth quarter 2008; industry-leading mobile data services; instant national and international push-to-talk capabilities; and a global Tier 1 Internet backbone. For more information, visit www.sprint.com.

About T-Mobile USA, Inc. Based in Bellevue, Wash., T-Mobile USA, Inc. is the U.S. operation of Deutsche Telekom AG’s Mobile Communications Business, and a wholly owned subsidiary of T-Mobile International, one of the world’s leading companies in mobile communications. By the end of 2008, 128 million mobile customers were served by the mobile communication segments of the Deutsche Telekom group—32.8 million by T-Mobile USA—all via a common technology platform based on GSM, the world’s most widely used digital wireless standard. T-Mobile’s innovative wireless products and services help empower people to connect to those who matter most. Multiple independent research studies continue to rank T-Mobile among the highest in numerous regions throughout the U.S. in wireless customer care and call quality. For more information, please visit http://www.t-mobile.com. T-Mobile is a federally registered trademark of Deutsche Telekom AG. T-Mobile Sidekick is a registered trademark of T-Mobile USA, Inc.

About the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) The Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) is the premier global non-profit trade association established to lead the growth of mobile marketing and its associated technologies. The MMA is an action-oriented organization designed to clear obstacles to market development, establish mobile media guidelines and best practices for sustainable growth, and evangelize the use of the mobile channel. The more than 700 member companies, representing over forty countries around the globe, include all members of the mobile media ecosystem. The Mobile Marketing Association’s global headquarters are located in the United States and it has regional chapters including North America (NA), Europe (EUR), Latin America (LATAM), Middle East & Africa (MEA) and Asia Pacific (APAC) branches. For more information, please visit www.mmaglobal.com.

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