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Consider this: In the early morning hours of Saturday, August 23, 2008, 2.9 million people received a 26-word text that revealed Barack Obama’s choice for a vice presidential running mate. They were the first to know the news. It was just part of a sweeping text messaging effort that helped propel Obama to the White House.
iHuman Evolution clients most popular types of businesses that use SMS Marketing:
Food & Beverage
A local coffee shop had a booming business Monday-Friday with the work crowd, but they were looking to boost their much slower Saturday morning sales. A text campaign offered $1 off a large gourmet coffee. They advertised the offer in a newspaper ad, a coupon magazine, on their website and in their shop. By the second week of the campaign they had an incredible 26% response rate. By the fifth week they had 300 customers in their database. Saturday sales increased by an average of 60%.
McDonald’s Italy made everyone an instant winner in a holiday campaign to send an SMS to Santa. The company printed unique codes on cups for consumers to text in– right in the restaurant. Every code was a winner. Presents ranged from mobile content such as personal calls from Santa, sending postcards to friends, personal photos with Santa to attractive physical prizes like prepaid credit cards, 150 mobile phones and free airtime. The campaign drew a stunning 25% response rate – with more than 1.5 million participations in five weeks.
Beverage company Snapple used printed contest numbers on the backs of 225 million bottle caps, which could then be matched with winning Snaffle numbers. The winning numbers were announced on TV, on the Internet and delivered via text messages to handsets. The SMS alerts were timed during the lunch hour, a peak purchase time for Snapple. Result: 90 percent of all consumers who received the alerts opened them and one-third of those who participated bought additional Snapple products.
Busy restaurants in malls can keep waiting customers happy by allowing them to keep shopping while waiting for a table. A quick text message informs them when their table is ready.
DMG World Media is an international exhibition and publishing company that produces more than 300 market-leading trade exhibitions, consumer shows and fairs, including the popular Surf Expo. Deciding it was time to raise the bar for communication with Expo attendees and exhibitors, they turned to a text messaging solution, creating an effective, cost-efficient text program to offer their 16,000+ attendees and 1,000 exhibitors.
Emergency SMS Alert Systems
Hundreds of colleges and universities across the U.S. are adopting text-messaging services for notification of weather-related cancellations and emergency alerts. In the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings in April 2008, campus security alerts are top of mind for education institutions. Instantaneous messages can be sent to an entire student body with warnings and updates.
TAO is one of Las Vegas’ premier nightclubs. Traditional print and email marketing were not providing enough return for their regular and special club night events. The club implemented a text messaging marketing strategy to promote their weekly parties as well as their big DJ nights. Within two weeks, TAO had a database of 2,000 customers who opted in to regular texts from the club. Attendance at special events has increased exponentially.
In late 2006, to promote the release of their debut album, rock band Boys Like Girlswent on the road with The All-American Rejects on The Tournado Tour. Hoping to build a database of loyal fans, and to enhance the fan relationship, the band and their record company, Sony BMG, launched a mobile marketing campaign. At the concerts, public address shout-outs and on-screen messages invited fans to text the keyword BLG to 25827. They received in return a message inviting them to pick up a free lithograph of the band at the merchandise tables.
Financial Resources Federal Credit Union sends regular text messages to its customers, who can opt in to receive three choices of messages: account balances; the last three transactions;
In Kenya, mobile subscribers to Safaricom can send cash to other mobile phone users with text. With more than 80% of the population excluded from formal banking, the system is expected to change people’s lives significantly.
For healthcare providers, “no shows” mean lost revenue. Direct mail or phone reminders can be costly and time consuming. Doctors are now using SMS to remind patients of their upcoming appointments. A two-way text service allows patients to either confirm or cancel. Doctors are also sending texts to parents reminding them of upcoming inoculations for their kids.
Global pharma leader Pfizer uses text messaging to keep its global sales force of 5,000 notified of server problems on its computer system, avoiding wasted time and calls; reminding them of key sales messages to clients, and new target sales goals.
Pharmaceutical company Novartis launched a “Pollen Count” text alert service to promote the launch of a new allergy nasal spray for hay fever sufferers, during National Allergy Week. The Pollen-Count Alert service enables sufferers to receive personalized, up-to-date, regular pollen count information by SMS with special alerts on days when the pollen count is particularly high in their geographic location – together with tips to help manage hay fever.
As publishers migrate toward digital products and services, text messaging is fast becoming part of the mix. In addition to promotions, newspapers and magazines are offering mobile classifieds, mobile dating services and breaking news alerts. The New York Timeslaunched a text messaging service to distribute news, features and columns from its newspaper and Sunday magazine. Readers can text to NYTNYT (698-698) and choose their favorite sections to receive the latest news, or their favorite columnists.
Text messaging is a no-brainer for radio broadcasters. Since much of radio listening is done in the car, on the beach, or at the office, there’s practically no competition from television or Internet. Hence, radio and the cell phone are meant for each other from promotional and advertising standpoints.
USA Today sends targeted ads via text messages that readers can request on their cell phones, in addition to updated information on sports, stocks, weather and other news.
When Philadelphia Style Magazine decided it was time to build a deeper relationship with their customers, they turned to text messaging. To better reach their target affluent 25 – 45 year-old readers, Philly Style offered the first 50 text subscribers a gift certificate for a free appetizer and cocktail at the restaurant of their choice. They reinforced the campaign launch in subscriber email newsletter.
Real estate agencies across the country are using SMS to quickly inform their clients with personal messages on new listings or information on closing deals.
The days of checking the newspaper, or online for that matter, are over. For instantproperty listings information, house hunters can text in a unique code that can be customized according to their criteria.
Gyms worldwide are using mobile marketing to generate leads through stronger databases, send out new membership promotions and offer updates on new classes and class cancellations.