OMG...53% of American's now own a smartphone, according to a study by Edison Research and Arbitron, Inc. Ninety-four percent of these owners use their phone to send and receive text messaging. And, 82% of these owners say their phone is always or almost always within arm's reach. This is why, according to Nielsen, 87% of mobile users will read a text message within 15 minutes of receiving it. No wonder The New York Times calls text message advertising "the closest thing in the information-overloaded digital marketing world to a guaranteed read."
Bugaboo Creek Steak House in Portland, Maine recently worked with Portland Radio Group to create a database (aka, text club) of text messaging users who have expressed interest in dinning at the restaurant. Once the database became robust, Bugaboo Creek could then share specials and discounts to attract new customers as well as creating repeat business from current customers.
To build a text club requires trading something valuable in exchange for people's cell phone number. This can be done through providing opportunities to win prizes or meaningful discounts. The more value a consumer places on the offer, the more likely he or she will surrender their phone number. In the case of Bugaboo Creek, the restaurant offered $5.00 off the purchase of any lunch or dinner entree when a customer showed a valid text message. This could be as much as a 50% discount depending on what the customer ordered.
In its advertising over a 5 week period, Bugaboo Creek invited listeners to receive the $5.00 mobile coupon by texting the word "steak" to the phone number 77000. In mobile marketing parlance the word "steak" is called the keyword. The number "77000" is known as the shortcode." To ensure success of a text messaging campaign, both the keyword and the shortcode needs to be easy to remember and simple to spell If just one letter or digit is off, then the consumer will not receive the requested text containing the coupon. At the end of the period more than 6500 unique customers had given their cell phone number to Bugaboo Creek in exchange for the $5.00 discount.
According to Bugaboo Creek management, significant numbers of the coupons were redeemed within three days of their receipt. By the end of the campaign, the coupons generated a decisive amount of incremental revenue for revenue, well in excess of the amount invested into the campaign.
Success Comes 160 Characters At A Time
Now that the Bugaboo Creek text club has reached critical density, the restaurant now shares with the members, on a regular basis, special dining deals and discounts. For instance, to increase lunch revenue at the beginning of the week, Bugaboo Creek offered members of its text club $2.50 off a prime rib sandwich or lunch combo. The text coupon was valid from 11am-2p on a specific Tuesday only. Each time one of these offers is sent to the text club an impressive number are redeemed. This is despite the small-window of time that the offer is valid and each offer is limited to 160 text characters (including spaces and punctuation).
Any business can integrate mobile marketing into their overall advertising mix. Learn 5 strategies any small business can employ to achieve success using text message marketing by watching the video below. This is a replay of webinar conducted by Marketron Mobile and Portland Radio Group. The webinar was hosted by Mike Violette of 560 WGAN.
Here are other articles we suggest to learn how other Maine small businesses have used radio to fulfill their advertising and marketing goals: