The emergence of mobile marketing among businesses seems to mirror the buzz of social media – everyone is talking about it but few businesses are using it and of those using it, few are using it well. The following is a list of some of the potential opportunities and challenges that marketers will need to acknowledge if they are going to have a chance at harnessing the power of mobile couponing.
According to the 2010 U.S. Local Mobile Advertising and Promotions Forecast, text message marketing spending was $90 million in 2009 and is expected to hit $8 billion in the next four years. Yet despite this rapid growth, text message marketing and coupons are still in their infancy.
Although most businesses are fully aware of the marketing potential of text message couponing, many are still not using it in effective ways. Here are some tips that are working for our clients.
Keep it simple Text message coupons are permission-based so make sure that you give your customers a good reason to opt-in and receive your deals. One-way to do this is to offer customers an incentive while they are already engaged with your product. An invitation to text a keyword to a short code is a welcome diversion when the receiver might be waiting in line to be seated. Choose a keyword that has some sort of relationship to your brand. Keep it short and simple – avoid random numbers, hyphens, underscores, or any other symbols that customers might forget to insert.
Timing is everything If you want your customers to act on your mobile coupon, you need to catch them on the move and create a sense of urgency. If you want your customers to grab a burger today at lunch, for example, you should send mobile coupons at around 10:00 a.m. – right when their stomachs are starting to growl. To add a sense of immediacy, the coupon should expire after lunchtime.
Start a conversation Text coupons have the ability to communicate directly with your customers. First, auto-replies are a must when sending text coupons as they are the first step toward creating more meaningful and advantageous customer relationships. Anytime a customer opts-in to receive your mobile coupons, it is important to thank them for inviting you to earn their business.
Another way to start a conversation with your customers is to ask them what kinds of deals they are interested in. For example, a burger place can send a text that says, “Lunch deal of the day – would you rather have a free burger or two free side items with the purchase of a combo meal? Text ‘burger’ or ‘side’ to vote.”
Making the most of your mobile coupons The redemption rate of mobile coupons is nearly 25 percent higher than printed internet coupons. It is roughly 10 times greater than mail or newspaper distributed coupons at a fraction of the cost. Mobile promotions can do more than just increase sales for your business; they can also create more meaningful, lasting relationships with your customers.
Juan Colome is founder and CEO of Infoseek Technologies an Internet Marketing Firm located in Miami, Fl.
For case study examples of text marketing success contact Juan @ [email protected] or call 786.447.7948 and a free two week trial.