Tag: Text messaging

Mobile #101 – Essential Guide to Using Mobile Marketing (Series Post)

(Post 10 of 12)

Will my business benefit from a complementary mobile channel?

Mobile Marketing will help you to drive footfall, it will offer customer interaction, it will certainly offer voucher redemption opportunities which in turn can increase brand loyalty and significantly improve your consumer marketing and acquisition metrics.

However, although mobile channels provide the vehicle to reach consumers, your marketing content is king. Remember your reasons for investing – grow sales, reduce churn, increase spend, reduce costs. It’s not just about the technology, it’s how effectively you can interact with your audience. The best solutions are invariably represented by multi – channel solutions.

For example, I recently managed a content – driven campaign that was delivered by email due to the amount of copy required in the message. When supported by text message at a later point in the day to drive virtual footfall back to the email, the response rate doubled and our client enjoyed a 52% response to the campaign.

What is my mobile marketing plan?

So you understand your business strategy, objectives, challenges and goals and perhaps even how mobile marketing can help you deliver these today. But what about tomorrow, next year and in three years?

Mobile Marketing is consumer driven, with its endless and relentless appetite for content relevant to the individual at a time to suit, the challenge is to adapt and develop with your customers demands.

An effective mobile marketing supplier will be able to offer you a mobile journey that initially accommodates your immediate requirements. They will provide guidance around client engagement, regulatory compliance, database creation and development, then have the product suite to take you through a development journey, in-line with your customers expectations – incorporating content management, voucher redemption and virtual loyalty programmes.

What kind of success can i expect?

Mobile Marketing lends itself well to a B2C environment given consumers demand and reward. Customer acquisition, retention, loyalty and cross sell are leading anchor propositions. It is easy to see how retail has a great deal to gain from a succesful mobile marketing strategy.

In order to understand the art of the possible, you really should engage a partner with a strong consultative model and a robust and proven technical product portfolio representing presence and communication solutions. If customer acquisition is a business objective then a partner with opt in database capabilities is a significant advantage.

If this series has captured your attention or sparked your interest in mobile marketing, then working with a trusted mobile partner should be your next step.


Talk to me today and let me see if I can help you achieve more from your mobile strategy.



Mobile #101 – Essential Guide to Using Mobile Marketing (Series Post)

(Post 9 of 12)

Ask yourself this question – Do my customers want me to engage with them via their mobiles?

Now ask your proposed mobile partner the same question…

A professional mobile marketing solutions business will be able to evidence a clearly defined consultancy process. This will be scalable in its own right, offering workshops through to mobile strategy creation and commercial modelling.

Mobile Marketing is a very visual and engaging channel and as such requires many aspects of service from technical to creative design, campaign and multi-channel management, regulatory and consumer behaviour insights.

A mobile marketing partner will offer a suite of professional services. For example, many retailers don’t have in-house mobile campaign management and regulatory expertise, so will look to partners to manage on their behalf with strong marketing and CRM team collaboration.

Look to work with suppliers with experience and strong track records of effective professional service delivery.

If you run a retail business then your customers will almost certainly want to you to engage them via mobile. There is a lot of evidence in analyst reports, surveys and retail success stories to show you why. For example a recent survey, found 75% of UK consumers want to interact with brands via the mobiles and 81% wanted offers or vouchers sent to their mobile.

Source Gartner

With Smartphone penetration at an all time high, consumers have easy on the move access to the mobile internet and digital content. Some 80% of mobile internet traffic is generated by smartphone handset users with an average weekly browsing time of over 7 hrs – more than reading newspapers and magazines which both average less than 5hrs.

Mobile traffic has grown by over 500% in the last two years and the number of smartphone customers in the UK is now over 75% of the population.

Source Deloitte

Consumers browse the internet from a fixed network access point less and less. They browse the mobile web on the move and are influenced by the content they access by advertising, location, mood, time and day of the week and especially what they’re doing at the time – because that’s what mobile now enables them to do. Content and context is now relevant to the consumer – so imagine how powerful your consumer marketing can be if you understand your client’s behaviours and are able to engage with them at the most opportune time. Surely that provides great value to your customer and if managed well to you!

Good Luck


Mobile #101 – Essential Guide to Using Mobile Marketing (series post)

Post 8 of 12 – Choosing a Mobile Partner

So far in this series we have talked about the things you need to consider when looking to establish your mobile strategy. We have read about the types of things you can do to link your mobile strategy into your existing business goals. I have spoken about how to use the mobile channel to enhance your existing communications and sales channels and we have read how to test our organisation’s understanding of what mobile can do for our business.

We know our mobile strategy can be scalable and should fit into our over arching marketing plan and we are ready to move onto choosing a mobile partner.

Start by doing your research and shortlisting mobile partners based on their capabalities and sector expertise. Consider if they provide a holistic approach or specialise in specific types of technologies or solutions. Your chosen partner should work with you and your business to understand the companies objectives and advise appropriate solutions.

The next question to ask is how will they do this beyond the initial sales staff? Are they really consultative with well defined processes to engage and understand?

Do these processes actually engage the right part of your business ensuring a well balanced understanding?

Next you need to know what they offer in both knowledge and product functionality across the key elements of the customer lifecycle.  How can they help you at each stage from targeting and acquiring new customers through to growth and retention strategies.

Customer Lifecycle Generic

Next you need to know that they offer a full suite of mobile marketing solutions, these may be sector specific solutions or in some cases the partner in question may just offer technology and expect you to have a certain amount of infrastructure to go around it.

An effective end to end solution provider will cover all aspects of mobile marketing including database management, customer acquisition, loyalty and mobile commerce. They will have a deep understanding on how to apply this thinking to individual business sectors and will be able to illustrate their recommendations using previous examples which they have implemented.

If a specific type of technology is employed to create, for example, a retail voucher redemption solution, then how does this integrate with your EPOS, database and possibly loyalty card vendors, can is support high volume redemption and customer interaction, will it offer service availability levels conducive to my business demands?

A professional mobile marketing solutions business will be able to evidence a clearly defined consultancy process. A good mobile partner will have a suite of professional mobile marketing solutions and services and I will talk through this in more detail in the next post in this series.






Mobile #101 – Essential Guide to Mobile Marketing (Series post)

Post 1 of a series of 12 – Introduction to Mobile Marketing

This blog and everything I talk about here should provide company owners and senior managers with simple steps that they can take before investing in a mobile channel strategy, either independent or as part of a multi channel plan.

Consumers are now truly mobile in their browsing and shopping habits. They increasingly expect companies and brands to deliver mobile – enabled services that meet their needs regardless of what device they are connecting on.

All customer focused businesses need to be aware of the many challenges that come with the development of mobile strategies. These can include mixed and confusing messages, claims of astonishing achievements, a lack of technological understanding and the added complication of where to turn for expert guidance.

The starting point for all businesses is to understand that the rush to engage with consumers using mobile technology involves more than the development of an App or loyalty program. As I will explain throughout this post series, its important to develop a fully considered mobile strategy before starting any technical development and companies that take a considered long term approach tend to out perform in the increasingly important mobile space.

Mobile is ubiquitous, it has taken less than 20 years to revolutionise the way we communicate with each other. It offers instant gratification, constant contact and an immediate payment system.

However utilising its fantastic power to gain brand loyalty from your new and old customers alike is a tricky business. Get it wrong and you will struggle to ever get it right again. Get it right and you will grow revenues, gain brand loyalty and acquire new customers.

Over this series you will learn the types of questions to ask prospective mobile partners, questions a senior manager should ask their sales and marketing or commercial teams and questions that senior management should ask before adopting a new mobile channel strategy.


I hope you enjoy and learn from this series




The holidays are fast approaching, so it’s more important than ever to keep your digital marketing program running as smoothly as Santa’s sleigh on Christmas Eve. Over the course of nearly two decades in marketing, 10 of these in Mobile technology businesses I have been witness to the rise of mobile as a major force in the digital communications landscape.

Yet less than 50% of British businesses give more than 5% of their marketing budget to mobile communications. (Source: Forbes)

There are a number of factors in a business not taking full advantage of the mobile channel, from reluctance of senior management to take the leap through to internal infrastructure issues that ultimately need fixing before a mobile strategy can be fully realised.

However, it’s easier than you think to judge the success rates of mobile over other more traditional channels, it’s even easier to track the effectiveness of SMS in increasing open rates of an email for instance.

Mobile Messaging via SMS is proven to increase interaction, engagement and promote faster buying decisions from your customers.xmas sms


So… Its Christmas… and if you’re not using Mobile as part of your strategy already, then your behind your competition… the question is… what are you going to do about it…

Want some ideas to get you started?

Take a look at my six benefits to SMS Marketing this holiday season….              

Source: IPSOS Survey


6 Ways to gain more revenue this Holiday season through SMS marketing…

  1. Notify your customers of special offers, low prices, instore sales etc..

People respond to mobile, the average text message is read within 90 seconds of hitting a handset and is the number one channel for making purchasing decisions whilst on the move.

  1. Reminders for appointments

Run a leisure business, restaurant or salon? Use SMS as an appointment booking service and remind your customers when an appointment is due. Get the customer to respond to your reminder or booking SMS and opt them in to receiving marketing texts going forward.

  1. NEWS FLASH! Let your customers in on your secret… notify them early of pre-sales activity.

Send your customers an SMS giving them vital information on a pre-sales event in your store or online business. Make them feel special and offer some good deals or offers and you will gain not only price based loyalty but customer brand loyalty too.

  1. Competitions

SMS is a great way to gain instant buy in for a competition or an offer linked to a competition entry. Collect data by adding in a mobile web page as part of the sign up process. Make it a Christmas themed competition for extra interest from your customer base at this time of year.

  1. Gift Card Sales

Not sure you’re going to sell enough gift cards this year? Mobilise them by offering gift cards via text messaging…send your customers a message to get them to visit the website or go in store to purchase a gift card for a loved one this xmas. Give them a small discount code in the message that they can use at the till point to get some money off their gift card purchase.

  1. Footfall Driver Offers

SMS marketing is fantastic for driving footfall into bricks and mortar stores especially in the holiday season. Offer customers a free glass of Mulled wine with a purchase over £5 for instance or a free mince pie when they order a coffee etc..

The holidays are just around the corner and consumers are starting their quest for the perfect gifts and bargains. A well worded and timely text message to a consumer giving value can entice shoppers to buy your products or services.

“85% of shoppers are highly likely to buy from brands that offer highly personalised discounts.”


Good Luck


SMS Marketing for Schools

Any school, whether primary or secondary, needs to have a system in place so they can contact parents in an emergency. Using the mobile phone to send a text is quicker than calling each parent individually and most are read within the hour.

From around 4p per message, texting is also by far the cheapest means of communicating with parents and is a much quicker method when contacting lots of parents at once. Take email for example. It will take someone time to create an email and get it sent out to all of the parents you have email addresses for. Unfortunately, on average only 25% of emails are read compared 95% of text messages. 92% of texts are also read within ten mins of being recieved – so you can immediately get hold of parents to advise them of any urgent messages.

Is texting right for my school?

Consider a situation where your school has to close due to the snow. Having to email and wait for a response could mean that pupils are left at school as not every parent checks their email.

You could try to phone parents – again there is no guarantee that they will answer and this will involve phone call costs and your time! Sending an SMS to parents takes minutes and you have more of a guarantee that they will read the message quicker than any other method.

Choosing when to use SMS

  • During school closures (snow/extreme weather)
  • Alerting parents to pupil absence
  • Alerting parents to flu outbreaks etc
  • Promoting a school event such as Christmas fair
  • Reminding parents to send monies such as dinner money
  • Confirming a parent appointment such as parents evening


Knowing what to write

Text messages can only be 160 characters (including spaces) long, so there’s no room for waffling!

It’s important that you get to the point quickly and that parents understand exactly what you’re

trying to say. As a rule, you should make sure that once you have created your message, it answers

these three key questions;

1) Why you are contacting them – i.e. school closure

2) When should they act? – i.e. closure time

3) What do they need to do next? Come to school to collect child or not send children in today

Here are a few examples;


Example school closure;

School closed again today due to snow. Do not

Send your child to school. We will update you at

5pm if we will be closed tomorrow

St David’s Primary School 01234 567 890


Example pupil absence

Urgent message, David has not arrived in school today

Please call us urgently on 01234 567 890

Broad Oak High School


Example head lice outbreak;

School Message: We have had several instances of head

lice in school this week.  Please check our website for advice.



Example of event promotion

School message -Don’t forget the Christmas Fair. Tuesday

11th December from 3pm.

See our website for more info


Obtaining Parent permission to SMS

It is unlikely that parents will not want to receive SMS messages from their child’s school, however it is good practice to inform them you will be using SMS to contact them. If parents have already provided their mobile number to you then you don’t need to request permission to send SMS messages, although for future reference it may be worth indicating to parents that when they give you their contact number that you will from time to time send them SMS messages. You could even add a small paragraph in the school newsletter that you will begin to use SMS for more urgent contact.

SMS Marketing for Garages

The automotive industry is fast paced and highly competitive. As a business owner you have many priorities and attracting and retaining customers is key. As well as this, it’s crucial to offer a great service and have a process to measure this with.

SMS marketing can help you to:

  1. Create a simple campaign to acquire new customers
  2. Target offers to retain your existing client base and grow sales during quiet periods in the business
  3. Provide better service by text messaging hints and tips on car care and maintenance, aswell as reminders for MOT tests and services.
  4. Provide a substantial return on investment compared to traditional forms of marketing – email, newspaper ads or radio.

SMS marketing is great for busy business owners to target their busy customers. A short and ‘to the point’  message takes seconds to read and can generate a response just as quickly, whereas traditional means of marketing communications; emails and newspaper advertising, even a telephone campaign, take a great deal of time to organise and can be costly too.

From around 4p per message, texting is also by far the cheapest means of communicating with your new or old customers. Take email for example. It will take someone time to create a great email marketing campaign. Unfortunately acquistion emails have an average open rate of less than 11%.

As well as generating more customers, you can also use the 2Ergo Broadcast system to manage your appointments, such as services, MOTs etc. The benefits of this are that it looks very professional, and you can reduce the number of costly no-shows to your business. You can also remind customers of when their next service or MOT is due, ensuring you retain business from your customers.

Is texting right for my business?

The simple answer is that SMS/text marketing can be beneficial to any garage. The real advantage of SMS marketing is that it’s cheap and scalable; anyone can do it and to any number of contacts so it really doesn’t matter how big or small your business is, texting can benefit you.

Acquire more business

  • SMS your old customers, offering a free tyre check when they pass by
  • Offer extra incentives for referrals – 10% off your next service when you refer a friend
  • 10% off all new tyres when you book a tyre check
  • Remind your lost customers to return for an MOT and get £10 off the cost of a service

Improve your customer service

  • SMS reminders for appointments to reduce no-shows
  • Generate feedback and measure service – give your members the opportunity to fill out a feedback card and leave their mobile number. This will help you measure service and you could then offer 10% off the next visit for those who participate via text
  • send occasional messages to warn of weather conditions that may affect vehicle performance


Knowing what to write

Text messages can only be 160 characters (including spaces) long, so there’s no room for waffling. It’s important that you get to the point quickly and that the client understands exactly what you’re offering them. As a rule, you should make sure that once you have created your message, it answers these three key questions;

1) Why you are contacting them – e.g. what offer are you making?

2) When should they act? – e.g. is there a closing date for your offer or promotion?

3) What do they need to do next? e.g. call or visit your garage

It’s important to keep the style of your messages friendly and chatty but at the same time, your message is clear and concise. Here are a few examples;

Example booking reminder/up-sell message;

Hi Dave, you have a service booked with us

Tuesday 11 Dec 11am. If you require a courtesy car

For only £20, call us on 01234 567 890

Smith Road Garage


Example hints/tips message

Prepare your car this winter! Ensure you add

Anti-freeze to your windscreen wash. To book

Your car for a free winter check, call us on

01234 567 890. BlueBell Service Centre

Once you have decided on how you want to use texting in your garage, and the content of your texts, you can determine how often you will need to contact customers and what your average usage of text messaging will be.

To learn more about how mobile marketing can help your business, visit our website http://www.crowd-connect.co.uk and lets talk!

Choosing your Mobile Marketing platform provider

When you start to choose your mobile marketing platform you will be faced with a number of different choices, there are bulk sms providers who have web based platforms that can provide you with cheap messaging rates for outbound messaging but dont offer an opt out function or inbound responses.

There are also some sms marketing agencies, who use an agregator platform to run their sms campaigns but have to pass the extra cost on to the customer and most still dont offer opt out functionality as standard.

Then there are the aggregators themselves, who own the platform technology your using, have opt out functionality as standard and also have inbound response functionality across a number of other mobile message types like MMS for instance.

One of the best I have worked with is the Campaign Manager Platform from 2ergo plc, one of the countrys biggest mobile aggregators. Campaign Manager is a fully convergent marketing platform and offers the user outbound / inbound SMS, email, vouchers and has optional Mobile Site creation functionality too.  It also has smart messaging technology, to allow the user to set several different responses to each mobile message they send and can manage responses based on a bespoke dynamic logic system.

The platform is built to global standards and operates in many countries around the globe and has automatic opt out functionality via subscription groups as standard.

Message throughput is good and downtime is less than 0.027 % this year, they are also ISO 27001 certified and campaign manager operates on a secure https domain.

Below is a video of Campaign Manager in action;

If you would like to arrange a demo for your company, please fill out the form below and click submit and someone from 2ergo will call you back to discuss your needs.



SMS Marketing

SMS Marketing, and the process of communicating and exchanging information and value with our customers, is changing the way that marketers manage relationships with consumers. Used effectively, it can help you to generate brand awareness, convert prospects to customers, maintain customer relationships and allow you to take your customer care to a new level.

Each text you send is immiediate, with 96% of text messages read within 90 seconds of landing on the handset.

Its personal, with you all the time and generally speaking its always on and it carries with it a built in payment system, extremely accurate user statistics and is available at the point of creative or copy development.

When you start to think about your companies mobile strategy, you may want to use this formula below;


The formula contains the three things you will need for a succesful strategy for your mobile campaign.

“understanding audience + confirming company objectives + corporate commitment = Succesful Mobile Strategy!”

If you know who your audience is then you know what they purchase, what services they like, which they dont, what drives them to interact or buy from you etc… you will also know what catergories they fit into which type of customers buy what type of products and why. Make a list of the different type of customers you have, keep it short (no more than 5 types) here is an example:

Segment your customer base, try and put each one of your customers into a particular user profiles, like the ones below;

The Careerist –                    24 – 40 years old  / Has bill paid for by the company?

Early Adopters –                 They want everything first, before their peers get it

Young & Hungry –                15 -29 years old / Want the latest gadgets and are always texting

Over 40s –                             Generally happy with a phone that allows basic texting and calls

In Touch Organizers –          Like to keep connected / 30 – 64 yrs old / Have busy professional and Social Lives and like to organize their family and friends

Only by doing this deep analysis of your customer demographic will you give yourself a better chance of fulfilling their needs and having success with your mobile marketing program(s).

Now lets look at confirming your companies objectives and getting sight of what they actually want to achieve from this marketing channel.  To do this you need to answer the following three questions;

1. Who is my audience?

2. What value do I deliver to my audience?

3. What objectives am I trying to achieve with my marketing and how will I know when I achieve them?

Finally you need to gain corporate commitment decide what your corporate objectives are, consider available resources (Internal / External) and consider the affects on the rest of your business only when you have done this can you gain corporate commitment for your mobile programme.

Once you have gone this far into establishing your mobile marketing programme, you can now start concentrating on the Five Key Elements to any Mobile Campaign, these are below:

  1. Customer Knowledge
  2. Appealing Value Proposition
  3. Development of Creative / Assets
  4. Promotion Strategy
  5. Reporting & Evaluations

The next step is to create something your customers/ prospects will like, something that gets your message across in a simple, easy to understand way, without complicating the process from a technology perspective.

When starting, start simply.  Pick a simple program, one with the broadest reach and ease of use for all concerned; moreover, first focus on accomplishing just one of your objectives; don’t try to do everything at once.