SMS Marketing Without Discounts or CouponsFor many companies and brands SMS Marketing is an extremely effective way to drive sales and customer engagement.  Major players such as Coca Cola, Pepsi, Starbucks, General Mills and Coors Light are using SMS as part of their corporate marketing strategy.

This blog post won’t get into the nuts and bolts of ‘What is SMS Marketing‘ and ‘Is SMS the Right Choice For Us’, instead we’ll focus on some ways you can use SMS as part of your marketing mix, without always sending discounts and coupons.

Let it be said – discounts are very effective because they are valued by consumers, if you chose to go another route you must ensure your SMS program still offers value.

The good news is, 10% of cell phone owners in Canada are willing to receive ads from time to time in exchange for receiving coupons, apps or exclusive content of interest to them (CWTA).

Here are a variety of ideas to inspire you…

In Seth Godin‘s book “Free Prize Inside“, he stresses that the best free prize does not tap into someone’s needs, it taps into their wants and it rarely delivers more of what we were buying in the first place. A good free prize delivers something extra.

Ask Your Team: Besides Discounts, What Would Our Brand’s Biggest Fans Consider Valuable?

  • Give them Something Valuable…but Free – Put yourself in the shoes of your biggest fans. What is something valuable you could offer that would have little or no cost to you? Think about things like a meet and great with the chef, a free ebook, an autograph or free gift wrapping.
  • Give Them a Chance to Win Something – This could be a monthly draw where one random subscriber wins something (= incentive to stay subscribed), or it could be a Text-to-Win sent only to your subscribers.
  • Give Something to Them Before Everyone Else – Invite your subscribers in for early-bird access to sale prices. Give them first dibs at buying tickets (and thus, the best seats). Let a secret leak.
  • Sweeten an Existing Promotion…such as a free gift with purchase or additional 5% off “when you show this text”. Are you a bar or restaurant with a Happy Hour? Extend it by 30 minutes or an hour for your subscribers only.
  • Give that ‘Insiders’ Feeling – Think about the allure of being part of an exclusive group or club, how could you create this same feeling among your subscribers? Most of the ideas already discussed would work, you could also: ask for help naming or creating a new item on the menu, give them access to a VIP area, invite them to an exclusive event or seminar.

What about you…feel free to share your ideas in the comments section below.