The CEO of ShopText discusses ways to create and monetize a mobile couponing channel.
What is ShopText Mobile?
Steve Roberts: ShopText is a mobile couponing and loyalty platform. Consumers simply send a text to a number that appears in a circular, direct mail, television, in-store or online ad. The coupon is then loaded to their shopper cards. ShopText integrates with existing POS and shopper card platforms. No new behavior is required for clerks or shoppers. Products are scanned and when consumers swipe their card or enter their alternate ID, such as a phone number, at checkout, the coupon is matched electronically and deducted in real-time.
So, consumers don’t need a smart phone?
Exactly. Text messaging is available on 98% of all mobile phones. No new mobile software or download is required to clip a coupon with ShopText. If you can text, you can ShopText. We make the consumer experience very simple by integrating with our grocery client’s key POS and loyalty systems. If a shopper wants to use their app or access their coupon/shopping list from their smart phone, we can enable that as well.
Does ShopText works for any generation of shoppers?
Yes. The reality is that texting isn’t just for teens. There are more 40- to 54-year-olds who send at least one text message per month than 13- to 17-year-olds. Why? Teens use texting as the primary way to communicate, causing older generations, namely parents and grandparents, to text in order to communicate with them. The fastest growing segment of texters are people over 50.
What kind of results are your grocery clients experiencing?
Shoppers are readily clipping coupons with a text message and coming to the store to shop. We have had many coupon offers for both manufacturer and private label sell out in a few hours. ShopText secure, paperless couponing is a whole new way to engage shoppers and drive them to the store.
Can grocers send text messages to their shoppers?
Yes, but only with a “double opt-in.” Consumers have to opt-in to receive offers and messages from grocers, just like with email. ShopText manages the whole opt-in/opt-out process per MMA guidelines for our clients.
What type of investment does the grocer need to make?
First, ShopText makes the upfront investment to integrate with grocer POS and loyalty platforms at no cost to our clients. Second, we help them drive build their mobile club opt-ins from their website, Facebook, email, circular, direct mail, in-store and television ads. Manufacturers pay for coupons clipped, just like with print-at-home coupons, and ShopText provides a revenue share to the grocer. When grocers build their mobile club opt-ins, it creates a new media channel for grocers to sell to manufacturers.
How quickly can a grocer launch ShopText mobile coupons?
We can be live in just a few weeks. Online and offline opt-in tools can be deployed in the first week to help grocers build their mobile clubs.