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Do you want SMS with that?
Posted on 27-Feb-2003 17:00. | Tags Filed under: News.

If you thought txting was for kids, think again. Over one and a half million messages can’t be wrong. Arguably New Zealand’s most successful txt marketing campaign to date, combining fast food and even faster prizes, it’s a match made in marketing heaven, a super-txt instant combo with prizes-to-go and entrants galore.

McDonald’s Restaurants (New Zealand) Ltd’s innovative txt-and-win holiday campaign, which finished last Friday, broke the one and a half million text message barrier in five weeks and then continued its run. It’s the highest number of txt responses ever in a New Zealand multi-network campaign, according to Touchpoint, the company providing the technology to manage this campaign.

With one in five valid entries winning an instant prize – that’s hundreds of thousands of instant prizes – and 16 return trips to Australia as main prizes, consumers were strongly tempted. And McDonald’s Manager of Marketing, Jason Paris, says the company is delighted with the campaign’s success – so much so that the company is considering using it as an internal case study.

“We hoped that if we got all the elements right we could break the one million response barrier,” says Jason. “This campaign absolutely demolished it. That’s over one and a half million direct contacts with McDonald’s customers – over one and a half million touchpoints, and each one received an instant response.”

McDonald’s had dual aims for the 5 week campaign: an in-store trade up promotion, and actively building a quality database by signing customers up to receiving future promotions. “Touchpoint’s campaign met all our targets in terms of innovation, consumer response rate, speed of response, accuracy and return on investment. It gave us an immediate and extraordinarily accurate picture of response patterns, which allowed us to fine tune the campaign as it developed. We regard it as an unqualified success.”

The secret was in getting the multi-channel mix right and using traditional media to drive the purchase-and-respond combination. The campaign started on 26 December and was promoted through television, radio and outdoor advertising until 31 January. McDonald’s customers received entry cards, each with a unique code, with combo purchases at McDonald’s family restaurants. Using their mobile phones, they could text the codes back to McDonald’s via the Touchpoint system and get an immediate response.

“One and a half million responses is a significant milestone for the New Zealand market,” says Touchpoint Managing Director, Steve Shearman. “Any marketer in the country would be happy to get that number of direct responses to a promotion. This establishes text message marketing as a significant marketing channel in its own right, and it proves that, used in combination with other channels, it’s a serious part of the marketing mix for many consumer marketers.”

The campaign also chalked up a number of other milestones along the way. Running over both Vodafone and Telecom Mobile networks, it’s the largest dual telecommunications network campaign yet seen in New Zealand. With just under 300,000 instant prizes being won and fulfilled, and volumes of 40-50,000 entries a day, it has set a benchmark for future consumer txt promotions in New Zealand.

It also built a platform for further campaigns, as a higher than usual percentage of respondents opted in to receive ongoing offers from McDonald’s.

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