Revive Your Mobile Marketing with Branded Text Messaging: Starbucks, Surfrider and Terminator2 Show How It’s Done
By Roni Haim, CEO, Zlango
Marketers and branding experts have never doubted the value of the text-messaging platform. When text messaging became popular circa 2000, marketers began launching full-fledged marketing campaigns designed to resonate with consumers. Today, American adults are sending or receiving over 500 text messages per month, and the text-messaging platform is more valuable for marketers than ever before. From launching localized text-messaged based campaigns to deploying mobile marketing strategies across a growing number of portable devices, outdated mobile marketing strategies have fallen short. High cost and poor tracking methods aside, marketers have had a difficult time utilizing the text-messaging platform to fully engage and retain customers. Now, mobile marketers are turning towards branded text messages—and incorporating their business icons, logos and slang into consumers’ everyday communication.
The Value of Branded Text Messages
Marketing and branding professionals are quick to realize the importance and relevance the text-messaging platform has to marketing efforts. Branding professionals looking to drive brand awareness and loyalty are finding the text-messaging platform is a strategic place to meet customers where they already are, and where they feel the most comfortable communicating.
At the same time, image-rich text-messaging icons—branded or not—give a deeper meaning to daily communication, letting consumers send and receive text messages designed to reflect spoken language and jargon. Moving into a realm of color and away from simple black and white text messages integrates a unique sense of personalization into each text message, setting the communication medium on a pedestal as one of the most preferred ways to communicate.
With such a user-friendly and readily adopted innovation like image-rich text messaging, integrating brands was the logical next step. Some of the first brands to jump on board the branded text-messaging bandwagon range from entertainment icons like The Walking Dead and Terminator2, to non-profit organizations like the California-based Surfrider Foundation.
Consumers integrate branded text messages into their everyday communication experience on a platform that has seen significant growth year after year and has yet to show signs of slowed growth. With 77% of the world owning a mobile phone and the average American sending hundreds of text messages per day, the opportunity for brands to resonate with both the sender and receiver of the text message is immeasurable. Opposed to marketing efforts disregarded by busy consumers, branding in text messaging can be easily adopted by consumers searching for more unique and personalized ways to communicate.
Don’t Get Customers Talking About your Brand, Get Them Talking With Your Brand
According to ClickZ, brands are no longer shaped just by what advertisers tell the public. Brands are what they consumers think they are—an opinion shaped by knowledge of the brand and engagement with the brand. Marketers with their company logo or brand displayed as a text-able image let committed brand enthusiasts become even more engaged and active with their brand. For example, consumers could text the Starbucks logo as a substitute for the word “coffee.” While they understand Starbucks is not necessarily a synonym for “coffee,” they are cementing the idea that Starbucks is an integral part of their communication and will likely continue to engage with your brand on a more regular basis. Thanks to the nature of the text-messaging platform, your brand will be used to communicate with others and can be shared with thousands of potential customers as users catch on and share with their circle of friends and family.
The power of branding for text messaging is in how consumers are communicating. While mobile marketing might spur people to talk about your brand, incorporating text-messaging into your strategy enables consumers to talk with your brand. In a world where customer engagement, loyalty and retention is increasingly vital to your business’s success, complete use of your brand in everyday communication will lead to a major mobile marketing win.
Branding is so much more than getting consumers to recognize your logo. Brand recognition means nothing if it doesn’t get customers to make a purchase, tell others about your company or remain loyal to your brand. Branded text-messaging is a win-win for companies and consumers alike—and a powerful way to create lifelong brand enthusiasts.
Roni Haim serves as both CEO and Board Member of Zlango. A veteran of telecommunications and hi-tech innovation for over 25 years, Roni has played key roles in the inception and evolution of several start-up companies including Alvarian (Nasdaq:ALVR) and Gilat Satellite Networks (Nasdaq:GILTF), as they became global leading NASDAQ public companies. Zlango is leading the evolution of texting with image-rich, emotionally engaging messaging that reflects spoken language, slang and culture. Zlango enhances words with sequential animated icons, creating a better texting experience, with advanced messaging features that combine fun, color and personal expression. Zlango is localized in 25+ languages across 20 countries and currently has over 5 million active users who send over 670 million mobile messages monthly in the US alone. For more information, visit www.zlango.com.