Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Retail giants have realized the power of mobile marketing, with SMS open rates consistently remain above 90%. A recent UK study by Textlocal indicated a 38% increase of people adding themselves to retail SMS lists, with an estimated 7.18 million users going the retail text messaging route by 2015. Young, tech-savvy consumers are among those turning to their phones to search for products, and retailers are enjoying much success with this avenue.

Mobile text campaigns are especially helpful in terms of repeat business. Research has shown repeat customers spend 67% more than those visiting a site for the first time! SMS marketing is therefore a great way for retailers to maintain relationships with current clients in addition to gaining new ones.

A Retail Marketing Tale of Success

Pete’s Ace Hardware store in Castro Valley, California does very well with mobile marketing, particularly with regards to online coupons. The store rolled out four mobile coupons in July 2013, and customers had to respond to these texts in order to obtain more coupons. The first campaign saw 49% of text-receiving customers redeeming their coupons and subsequently purchasing an average of $72 worth of products while shopping. The campaign therefore increased customer “cart size” by a whopping 411%! Furthermore, the store found themselves with 191 new customers after the first campaign month, all of whom signed up to receive coupons.

The revenue generated thanks to this effort was 13 times what it cost to send the texts. Now over 20 other Ace Hardware franchises have jumped on the mobile marketing bandwagon, and will likely stay there.

Common Retail SMS Marketing Uses

So what are the most common uses regarding retail SMS marketing, and what makes them so fantastic?

  • Exclusive Customer Coupons: A great way to ensure repeat customers is to send them coupons they can’t get otherwise.
  • New Products: Mobile marketing is a super-efficient option for letting customers know about new products and services.
  • Cross-Channel Marketing: Scanning barcodes on products is a way to receive texts concerning similar items, such as a dress and its recommended shoes, accessories, etc.
  • Product Availability: A customer waiting on a product not in stock can be easily alerted as to its arrival.
  • Sales Events: SMS blasts are much more effective than email when it comes to sales event messages.

SMS Marketing Means Results

SMS mobile marketing clearly beats emails, snail mail(ings), door-to-door flyers, hot air balloons…you get the idea. It allows retailers to reach all or most of their customer base easily without costing a small fortune. It also increases brand awareness and promotes healthy customer relationships. Whether your business is a few weeks old or you’re looking to solidify a current customer base, SMS mobile marketing should be an essential ingredient in your marketing and branding formula.