This week Nielsen Mobile unveiled a new report, titled “The Short Code Marketing Opportunity,” that proves what we at mobileStorm have long known: Texting is now. The report is one of the first of its kind to take inventory of this year’s successes in text message marketing. mobileStorm client Broad River Furniture was among those featured, with the report highlighting the furniture retailer’s usage of mobile coupons to boost sagging summer sales. Nielsen notes, ”Rewards programs are one way to ensure that a short code marketing campaign creates an engaging consumer experience; another logical opportunity is couponing.”
Other texting campaigns mentioned were from the likes of Coca Cola, Best Buy, Subway, and other internationally-known brands. One of the most well-known examples cited was the recent campaign for U.S. President-elect Barack Obama: Though the SMS message declaring Joe Biden as the vice presidential nominee was disparaged by critics who saw the announcement first on CNN or other news stations, the mass of people–2.9 million of them–who ”texted-in” was proof in the pudding.
Nielsen’s report comes just in time for marketers who are unsure of venturing out into the mobile space and have been deterred by industry cynicism. The truth is that mobile campaigns are a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing mediums and pose the opportunity to capture large returns. The key is to use text messaging to start a personal and engaging conversation one-on-one with your customer or prospect, rather than send the kind of messages traditionally used in broad-reaching media formats like print, outdoor, and television.
Along with highlighting the uses of stand-alone mobile campaigns, Nielsen Mobile also talks about using SMS/text messaging to encourage users to participate in traditional media campaigns like television and radio. One of the most obvious examples of this (not mentioned in the report) happens to be another mobileStorm client: American Idol.
The point is that not only is texting powerful by itself, it can also be used to turn branding initiatives into direct response vehicles–an invaluable tool for marketers and media gurus alike.