SMS competitions – why use them and when

20 February 2012

Competitions are a great way of increasing the interactivity between your brand and consumers. Sms competitions are fun and offer a clear benefit to consumers; a key concern with sms marketing is to be adding value so as not feel intrusive. With competitions, consumers can gain something with little effort or money and entering is quick, able to be completed instantly. This means that text competitions have high response rates as people are more likely to take the time to enter, simply because it doesn’t actually take much time!

Setting up a text competition is easy, they are quick to implement and can be very targeted and personalised. With so many mobile phone users, the potential reach is huge and the effort required from organisers is very minimal. Competitions which require phone or postal entries are time consuming for both organisers and consumers; they also require a lot of manpower which pushes up the cost of running the competition. Text competitions are more cost effective as the system used to implement the competition collects all entries for you, and can even select the winner(s) at random too.

You can send out competitions to your existing consumer base, rewarding them for their loyalty, or you can use it as an opportunity to gain new customers by using a text competition as the call to action on your traditional advertising methods; this also allows you to build your mobile numbers database at the same time.

Using things like text competitions, promoted via existing marketing efforts, also has the potential to help you assess the exposure of and attention paid to your traditional advertising, as you can see how many people decided to enter. If you’re feeling fancy, you could even use different keywords on different forms of promotion to assess which method works best for your company, by looking at the most used keyword by entrants (e.g. ‘text WIN to …’ on a poster and ‘text ENTER to …’ on a door drop).

There is also potential to make back some money with reverse billing enabling you to charge people to enter, this is optional, it can be free for people to enter.

One last thing, it is considered best practice to send a confirmation text to entrants which thanks them for entering, and can remind them of the end date or when they’ll hear if they’ve won.

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