Mobile Coupons Set For Further Growth In Tough Times

Mobile Coupons Set For Further Growth In Tough Times

During a recent skim through some international mobile marketing news headlines, I noticed a press announcement from the parent company of America’s second-biggest pharmacy chain, Walgreens. Apparently, in-store and online chemist customers now have the ability to redeem mobile coupons. I thought surely this has to be some small tweak to the current mobile marketing offering of this massive 370 000 employee business as they cannot be that far behind in the game? I had recently played around with the mobile coupon offering of one of South Africa’s major retailers and I recalled, looking at the Walgreens press release, how impressed I had been. We really have some outstanding retail organisations in this country that simply get mobile marketing, and mobile coupons in particular. Of course, a major reason why South African retailers understand the power of a potential 55 million population accessing mobile discounts is because they have great mobile marketing advice from specialist advisors like InTarget. Shoprite Checkers, for example, launched Eezicoupons mobile coupons as far back as four years ago, in the process becoming the first SA retailer to enable consumers to get instant shopping discounts on their cellphones. InTarget’s experience is that a huge number of consumers admit that they actively search for mobile coupon rewards on their phones before making purchase decisions. That’s significant. In conclusion, coupons are not the sexiest of mobile marketing tools but they have come a long way from mom cutting up pages of the things over the kitchen table. Their appeal to consumers will only increase as our sluggish economy keeps shedding jobs. They definitely are worth taking another...
Voice-based ads

Voice-based ads

I don’t think it would be out of place to write that ever since our ancestors discovered that logs could be made into seats – and a circle of cavemen could then be called a meeting – we have equated meetings to work. This is why for many years competitive types would settle down at their favourite pubs and hold after-hour meetings where they would all inform each other about how many meetings they had attended that day. This was a way of illustrating to their friends just how hard working they had been. Enter the advent of ubiquitous email access in corporate South Africa, and suddenly hard work is not defined in meeting hours anymore, it’s about how many emails you sent and received during a particular working day. A friend of mine recently told me he sent and received over 120 emails in one day, followed by perhaps a dozen text messages, and in last position, he said he received perhaps ‘one or two’ phone calls. ‘One or two?’ I thought, ‘That’s an opportunity!’ It seems to me that communication has become more text-based than at any other time in history. With people having to work their way through thousands of lines of text-based emails a day, marketers have a fantastic opportunity to be heard – quite literally – via InTarget’s voice-based mobile advertising service. These days, when the phone rings, people take notice because it has become so unexpected for so many of us. And that’s especially true of the younger generation who barely make a phone call today. We’d love to hear from you (forgive...

What can I do with USSD Push?

Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD) Push messages can be used to convey various types of information to your customers in the blink of an eye. Much like SMS, USSD Push messages are sent in plain text to a recipient’s mobile handset. You can use it to communicate with your customers (or even your employees or stakeholders) about absolutely anything. For example: A promotion or special offer A onetime pin or password Relevant company news (the company reached its sales target, you received a big investment, new stakeholders are joining the team, the company is relocating etc.) Directions to your social media pages or website Important info about your products and services (shipment dates, shift schedules etc.) Unlike an SMS, these messages can’t be saved to the recipient’s phone. How is this useful? Take the onetime pin for example – this is sensitive info that the recipient doesn’t want to store on his phone in case his phone ever get’s stolen. In other words, having the message disappear automatically after reading, provides the customer with an extra measure of security. Because the customer can just click the message away without reading it, some customers find this communication method less invasive when compared to actual phone calls. Some of the advantages of USSD Push are: It puts the focus solely on your message – no pictures or jingles It is a very cheap method of customer communication It all happens in real-time It is fast and can reach your customers wherever they are All handsets are capable of receiving these messages It is a point of contact that you can use...

8 secrets for a no-nonsense SMS Marketing campaign Part 2

In Part 1 we gave you four secrets to make any SMS Marketing campaign hassle-free. Today we will divulge four more secrets that marketers often miss the mark with. Make subscriptions easy You know that you need to permission from your customers to send them mobile messages. Marketers usually leave this one for last because it can be tricky if you don’t already have a loyal opt-in phone list. But take heart, there are two very easy ways you can achieve this. Let your customers text a keyword to you (you can use Premium SMS for this if you like) or let them submit their numbers via a web form. You can incentivise these subscriptions by providing access to exclusive info about your products/ services. Don’t rush it On average, a mobile user reads a text within 3 minutes of receiving it – unlike emails that can take hours or days to be opened. This statistic alone tells you that timing in your SMS Marketing campaigns are pretty important. It is not at all like a wedding invitation that you have to send two months beforehand – texts follow very much the “out of sight, out of mind” concept. In other words: don’t send your texts too early, but also not so late that consumers don’t have enough time to react on it. Understand what “exclusivity” means When we say that you want your customers to opt-in to your list because you want to offer them exclusivity, we don’t mean that you should exclude any other communication channels in your marketing toolbox. The more platforms you can use to...

8 secrets for a no-nonsense SMS Marketing campaign Part1

Developing a SMS Marketing campaign requires creativity and finesse. There are lots of factors you have to take into consideration and things that have to “click” with each other. Have a look at the first four of eight secrets we will be sharing with you. Have clear objectives “Hey, let’s do a SMS Marketing campaign to see what happens,” is not an objective. You need to have an achievable objective or clear goals of what you want to achieve with your campaign. And those goals should always be S.M.A.R.T – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time specific. Also, try to align these goals with that of your overall business objectives so it fits with the bigger picture. Involve the whole company It is easy to push everything onto the marketing team, but they aren’t flying solo. Everything that happens on their side will influence every other division – from sales to the IT department right through to the receptionist. Every single employee should be given the opportunity to contribute their skills to the campaign and should also be kept in the loop. Clear call-to-action SMS Marketing has little room for error. So you have to make 100% absolutely sure that your call-to-action is so clear that even a 10 year old can understand it. One example of this is SMS keywords. You might think it will make your keyword stand out to put it in a “quotation”, but if the consumer texts the word with the quotation marks it might not register on your side. Incentivise We know you have heard this one a million times – give your...

Get trendy with Direct Operator Billing

Direct Operator Billing is a service you can provide to your customers so they can pay you directly from their mobile phone. Why is it becoming a trend? What is in it for your business? It is Green If you are concerned about the earth (which we all should be) you will love this paperless way of conducting transactions. No cutting down trees or destroying the environment to print bills, invoices, statements, envelopes, post stamps etc. Money before goods Non-paying customers can seriously hurt your business. Online businesses in particular often struggle to get their money from customers – the moment the customer receives their delivery, they suddenly vanish. Other times cheques bounce or things just simply go wrong. With Intergrat’s Direct Operator Billing, you will receive confirmation if the customer will be able to pay you before you approve his/ her order. You save First of all, your business will save on costs because everything is paperless. But because the payment process is so transparent, you should also receive fewer refund requests or complaints. It is convenient for the customer The moment consumers have to jump through hoops to pay you, they start thinking twice about their purchases. Often times they decide that it’s not really worth all the hassle and they abandon their virtual shopping cart. Impulse consumers can also really boost your company’s bottom line. Make it easy for them to purchase your products on the spot by giving them Direct Operator Billing. Naturally, the easier you make it for consumers to shop, the more likely they are to return and make repeat purchases. Depending on...
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