MediaPost’s “Mobile Insider” blog recently ran an in-depth piece on AutoTrader’s mobile strategy.
A great example of a company that is redefining its relationship with its customers through mobile is the longstanding car classifieds brand Autotrader. Once a ubiquitous print pub, the company’s presence is now principally digital at Autotrader.com. It receives over 15 million uniques a month — and as you might guess, shas an evolving mobile program. The mobile site gets about 12% to 15% of the digital traffic each month.
But the real mobile success story is in the one area where the company still has a strong print presence, AutotraderLatino. “The Latino market still has magazines and a propensity for print,” says Jose Puente, director, mobile products and strategy, Autotrader. And at the same time, this is the market that is most heavily mobilized. In fact, at AutotraderLatino.com, 42% to 46% of monthly traffic is coming from mobile.
Read the entire article here: http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=159496
Chicago Mobile Marketing Leader Growing Rapidly Based on High Customer Satisfaction
CHICAGO, Aug. 1, 2011 — Cellit, a leading provider of mobile customer relationship management (CRM) systems for restaurants, retailers and other companies, today announced that it has sent its 125,000,000th text message on behalf of its clients. Cellit has more than 1,500 client companies that rely on Cellit’s Studio mobile marketing platform to create impactful mobile marketing communications, including surveys, contests, special offers and coupons.
“Our success is a reflection of not only the growth of mobile as a marketing tool, but the trust our clients place in us to manage their mobile marketing campaigns,” said David Wachs, president of Cellit. “We strongly believe that mobile marketing is one of the best and most cost-effective ways to build strong and profitable relationships with customers and we intend to continue helping educate businesses, both small and large, on the possibilities of mobile marketing.”
Cellit recently signed several new customers, including a Chicago-based national spa chain as well as Pizza Hut, a major clothing retailer, and Bar Louie, a national bar and restaurant chain.
Over the company’s six-year history, Cellit has grown from $50,000 in revenue to $5,000,000 today, representing a 9,000% growth rate. The company was named one of the Inc. 500 Fastest Growing Companies in 2010.
Cellit develops mobile customer relationship management (CRM) programs for retailers, restaurants and other companies who want to leverage mobile technology to create a deeper level of customer engagement. The Cellit Studio campaign management platform empowers clients to create interactive mobile CRM programs including coupons, contests, games, surveys and alerts that inform, delight and motivate customers, increasing knowledge, loyalty and ultimately spending. Cellit Studio seamlessly integrates with client enterprise and POS technology and provides an easy to implement and measurable way to maximize the potential of the mobile channel. Cellit also provides custom mobile sites and phone apps to some of the largest brands in the world. Headquartered in Chicago, Cellit was recently named to the Inc. 500 2010 list of fastest-growing private companies in the country.
For more information please visit www.cellit.com.
In today’s social-buying, deal-of-the-day marketing environment, customers are scrambling to gobble up the deliciously-priced Groupon, Living Social and Gilt City offers. Half-priced this, 60% off that. Moving from deal to deal, these consumers have no plan to return to these restaurants and retailers; it’s a “one and done” mentality. Customers want deals. Why pay full price if you can get it for half?
So this begs the question: how can the retailer bring that consumer back? Should the retailer even consider participating in the program if they have no long term plan to communicate with the customer? When the flood of customers comes running through the door, how can the retailer turn the experience from a free product giveaway to something that benefits the business? Groupon and the like prove getting customers these days is not the problem; keeping them is! In fact, a recent poll of US and UK marketing execs by Forbes Insights found that their number one priority is customer retention not acquisition.
We see the answer in mobile communications.
My company, Cellit, powers mobile marketing for companies of all sizes, ranging from “mom and pop” restaurants to Fortune 50 retailers. We help these companies improve the dialogue with their customers, through creating engaging—and profitable—text messaging programs. At its simplest, a text message program (or “mobile club”) is similar to an email list: users sign up to receive alerts and offers directly from the brand. However, unlike email, mobile clubs send the messages directly to the user’s phone, through short text messages. Additionally, signing up for the program is very easy: users simply text a special keyword to an assigned number to join, such as “Text PIZZA to 12345”, which eliminates data entry for the business.
Many of Cellit’s customers, and other businesses with text message programs, are now starting to leverage mobile to turn the “Groupon effect” into a way to capture customers. When the customer comes in to redeem their deal-of-the-day offer, the business provides an incentive (such as an additional 10% off) to join the mobile program. With such a large volume of deal-of-the-day goers, businesses can quickly build up valuable lists of customers to market, directly to their phone.
But how valuable are these mobile subscribers? For many of our clients, they can be extremely valuable. As you can reach these customers any time, when used properly, businesses can deliver incredibly effective mobile campaigns. In fact, some of our clients find their mobile subscribers to redeem mobile offers seven times more often than their email subscribers, and often have larger total shopping baskets.
Gelato Spot, a group of 5 gelato stores in Phoenix, is pushing all Groupon-goers to join their mobile club. Those that do signup receive additional monthly offers straight to their cell phone. To-date, Gelato Spot is seeing a 12% redemption rate on these coupons, the highest they’ve seen with any medium! Moreover, their gelato goers are incredibly (pardon the pun) sticky; 80% of the members remain on the list three months or more.
While the results speak for themselves, is there ROI? Do the benefits of running a mobile program justify the costs? More than likely, the answer is “yes”. For a small business, the monthly cost is around a hundred dollars. While this cost increases as more messages are sent, the cost is tied directly to performance, so while this cost may eventually be in the thousands, this would only occur if your program is performing, and generating substantial returns.
Without a solid customer information capture strategy, whether SMS or email, businesses should reconsider jumping on the Groupon bandwagon. While those customers might come running in the door, they’ll be running out it shortly thereafter, and without a plan in place, they’ll never come running back.
Every day, there’s another “mobile technology” company popping up…another competitor, for us to compare ourselves against. While I’m all for choice and competition, comparing us to them really isn’t doing either of us justice. Let me run through our typical competitive analysis (without naming names) and you can be the judge.
- History: Cellit’s been around for over 6 years. The competition? 1 year or less.
- Client Roster: Cellit has several Fortune 100 retailers and restaurants (at the corporate level) in addition to mom-and-pop clients. Nearly all of them are ongoing clients… not 1-off promotions. The competition? Typically 1 or 2 brands for which they’ve done a promotion here or there.
- Team: Our experienced management team comes from a mix of management consulting, technology, broadcast and advertising. The competition? Usually a few guys who’ve worked for an ad firm, with no technology background.
- Customer Support: We have three full-time, dedicated customer account managers that spend their entire day working with their assigned clients. We offer customer support for 10 hours each day, and have on-call tech monitoring and support 24 hours a day. The competition? Typically, as these companies are run by 1- and 2-person shops, it’s hard to provide any real customer support.
- Development: Our software was developed 100% in-house. We are able to turn around updates much faster than our competition, and often our programmers can develop custom software for our clients in less than a week. With five full-time developers, nobody can match our team for turnaround, experience or customer support.
- Connectivity: Cellit connects to all major carriers (“Tier 1″) as well as many of the “tier 2″ and “tier 3″ carriers through direct connections. Our competition: typically just the tier one carriers.
- Throughput: Up to 800 messages a second. Our competition: up to twenty (20) messages a second.
- Technology: Cellit offers all of the following:
- Robust campaign manager with 30+ rules that can be chained together with “and” and “or” logic”
- Scheduled, recurring, campaigns
- Dynamic branching
- Unlimited data collection, via “data fields” that can validate based off “regular expressions”
- Automatic, dynamic coupon code generation via our proprietary algorithm, or we can leverage client coupon codes
- Full, open, webservice based (SOAP) api, enabling the direct integration of our backend databases with theirs.
- REST-based triggers
- Our competition? Typically, not even close.
- Coupon Redemption: We offer plug-ins for MICROS, Agilysys (and shortly) POSitouch. We also offer the Widgit for Windows-based POS systems, and the iWidgit (for iPhone/iPad) and Widgit for Android. The competition typically has no solution!
- Security: As Cellit holds data for some of the largest companies in the world, we are PCI-certified and regularly audited by an independant third party for security holes. Our competition typically has not made security a priority.
In a nutshell, when you compare Cellit to the competition, hopefully you’ll come to the same conclusion our clients have: there is no comparision.
Call me. I’ll be happy to provide more insight.
800-790-6597, ext 706.