What can I do with this thing? (courtesy gailjadehamilton at Flickr CC)Does your boss have a smartphone but isn’t really too sure what to do with it, or does he or she not have a smartphone at all?

Time for a teaching intervention, or you’ll never convince him/her about why mobile is so doggoned important to your future.

Some data:

**  427.8 million mobile units sold in Q1 of 2011, a 19% increase year-over-year.

**  By 2014, mobile Internet usage is expected to overtake desktop internet usage, and half of all local search is from a mobile device (Mashable.)

**  1 in 4 Hispanics who access the web do so through a mobile device.

Sometimes, though, a blizzard of stats doesn’t teach lessons as well as personal experience (and gnashing of teeth.)

Here’s how to get “Boss Buy-in” to the importance of mobile in your destination marketing, and the need to get moving on mobile-friendly content….

How to Help the Boss “Get It” About Mobile

1)  Start with having her open the browser on a smartphone and look at your destination/attraction website on it, plus some competitor websites. Bonus if they aren’t mobilized AND they have Flash stuff all over them; now she can see what a pain in the neck this is for visitors trying to quickly seek useful information.

2)  Have him type the words “downtown restaurants in Your Town” or “things to do in Your Town” on the Google homepage in the phone’s browser (as the average visitor might) and see what comes up. Imagine a visitor trying to sort through that.  Make a note to hold member/partner training about getting found in local search.

3)  Have her open the maps function on the phone. Try to get directions from somewhere on one of the highways through your town, to your most famous attraction or museum. Now, imagine a visitor doing that. Is it easy to do?

4)  Then have him look at one of your town’s major museum/attraction websites and try to poke around getting its operating hours, admission prices and directions. Notice how many “How to Get Here” buttons open to pages with useless maps, or a Google Map that you can’t easily manipulate. Imagine a visitor who actually knows the museum is in your town, but can’t figure out on his/her phone how the hell to get there, and giving up in frustration.

Now your boss will be newly-enamored of you and of your efforts to get people to understand why mobile is important, and that it’s not just a small telephone …. it’s a computer in everyone’s purse or pocket.

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