Chrysa Karamanidi, Chief Innovation Officer at Upstream, explains how to successfully deploy mobile marketing strategies throughout the year.
Without a doubt, seasonal shopping events are the focal points of the year for bargain hunters. From Black Friday to post-Christmas and New Year sales, Easter shopping and summer discounts, even Valentine’s Day and the growing phenomenon that is Singles Day, a Chinese shopping holiday to celebrate people not in a relationship that is rapidly being exported throughout Asia and elsewhere , the stakes for retailers are huge.
The success of seasonal events often determines whether a retailer ends the year in the black or the red. For instance, spending online over ‘Cyber Week’ in 2022 broke a record of $35.3bn (£28.5bn) in the US, with mobile shopping contributing towards 55 per cent of sales on what has been billed as the biggest online shopping day of all time, according to figures from Adobe. Elsewhere, in the UK, the British Retail Consortium says Christmas shopping and the World Cup during December boosted sales by 6.9 percent.
As such, these holidays are a time to be bold with marketing. How best to capture consumers’ attention, drive traffic, and convert sales requires careful consideration and marketing campaigns that ‘think outside the box’. However, this type of thinking shouldn’t start and end with just the festivities. The most successful marketing strategies can be applied for year-round success.
Personalize, build, broadcast and convert
In particular, mobile marketing has huge potential, with global mobile commerce expected to exceed US$4.7 billion annually by 2027, according to ResearchandMarkets. This is especially true in emerging markets, where consumers are much more likely to be mobile-first when it comes to how they use the internet.
In 2022, we worked with multiple retailers across Brazil, the second fastest growing eCommerce market in the world, to boost the effectiveness of their Black Friday multichannel marketing campaigns. By incorporating advanced mobile messaging and automation strategies into their campaigns, retailers we worked with were able to boost the average value of their orders by 8 percent, with mobile messaging campaigns also attribute to over 8 percent of total customer revenue.
Here, are four strategies I single out, which can be applied all year around and don’t just stop once holiday shopping is over:
- Personalize, personalize, personalize – with two-thirds of customers always expecting companies to understand their unique needs and expectations, according to Salesforce, setting dynamic user journeys according to an individual’s profile and behavior is the most critical factor contributing to an effective multichannel marketing campaign. Triggered personalized content and communications, sent at the right time via the most appropriate channel, maximizes campaign performance while also minimizing messaging spam. By taking this approach, our customers’ mobile messaging campaigns were able to generate a 22.5x return-on-investment over the course of the 2022 Black Friday weekend.
- Build relationships for the long-term – rather than a short affair, mobile messaging campaigns can help build and enhance relationships with customers for the long-run. By providing a simple tick box for consumers to opt into messaging when they checkout, brands can quickly build-up CRM databases. Doing this has enabled some of our partners to collect 8x more client phone numbers for their CRM databases. These consumers can then be targeted for personalized year-round communications and offers. The effectiveness of this can be further boosted by using new mobile identification technology to collect first-party mobile data on the open web to complete user profiles and databases, with the customers’ consent.
- Broadcast at the right moment – the advantages of building a strong CRM database go even further once you also consider the power of broadcast messaging. When some of our partners sent notifications to identified customers, combined with World Cup matches, conversion rates increased by 30 percent. Announcing big discounts and flash sales at opportune moments via mobile is an indispensable way to boost sales. This approach can be repeated throughout the year, for example, to alert customers to fans and air conditioning promotions during summer heatwaves, or cold weather gear when the temperature starts to fall in winter.
- Turn abandoned carts into sales – follow-up cart recovery messages prove especially effective for higher ticket items, resulting in much greater conversions and average order values. Say a customer visits an eShop, and adds a TV to their online shopping cart, but does not checkout. With an advanced mobile messaging retargeting strategy in place, the customer will receive an automated message with a clickable link back to their shopping cart so they can return and complete the purchase. Intelligent cart abandonment retargeting can recover more than 10 percent of revenues that would otherwise be lost.
Learnings from seasonal sales
Our experience from the campaigns we run for our customers around the globe shows that brands can use mobile messaging to significantly enhance their customer bases, smash their marketing and sales KPIs and boost their revenues.
In an ever-competitive landscape, with consumer spending hit hard by inflation, brands should be creative and daring with their marketing. Applying the most successful mobile marketing strategies throughout the year, not just during the traditional sale periods, is a must for retailers wanting to strengthen their prospects.