HipCricket Debuts Enhanced SMS Coupons

SMS Marketing firm HipCricket announced the launch of a hosted mobile coupon offering for retailers and fast-food restaurants, also known in the industry as "quick service restaurants." From the HipCricket release that went out earlier today:

This new enhanced HipCricket mobile coupon offering provides consumers with single use promotional codes that are fully trackable by any point of sale (POS) system that accepts VISA or MasterCard. It also features a specific solution for quick service restaurants, QSR Plus. QSR Plus adds creative and ongoing consulting to help businesses maintain and increase customer loyalty, establish one-to-one communication with their prospects and customers and, ultimately, increase average customer spend and frequency . . .

For consumers, the route to a mobile coupon is simple: a consumer sees a call to action and texts the “keyword” to a short code; the consumer receives a mobile voucher including an eight-digit unique code and a promotional message; the consumer takes voucher to store to receive discount/offer; the unique code is entered into the POS system via cash register or card reader; the validity of voucher is checked in real time with a coupon server; if the voucher is valid, it is redeemed; if not valid, a detailed message is returned for checkout management. 

Coupons and deals are a very hot segment right now. And mobile offers is one of the areas that consumers are most receptive to in the abstract as well as in practice. Here are some recent data from AOL and Compete:

AOL/Universal McCann (of the 38% who responded to mobile ads on smartphones): 

Picture 187

(n=1,800 smartphone owners who used the mobile Web at least once a week).

Compete (smartphone users): 

Picture 186

(n=970 smartphone users)

Finally from a recent study about e-mail and SMS marketing, so-called millennials (18-25) were found to be highly willing to receive opt-in marketing messages in SMS. Here are the categories that millennials were interested in receiving offers from more than once a day:

  1. online merchants (34%),
  2. entertainment (32%),
  3. sports (28%),
  4. special offers from traditional (offline) retailers (26%),
  5. electronics information (21%), and
  6. telecommunications information (21%).