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Pepsi Uses Text to Win (SMS) for Oscar Sweepstakes

The soft drink giant has been involved with mobile marketing since the very beginning. Pepsi knows well that their target audience is highly mobile engaged.

    “We’ve found that consumers are more willing to engage in a promotion via SMS than other methods of entry because it’s quick, convenient and now an   extremely commonplace form of communication,” said Gina Anderson, director of media relations at PepsiCo, Purchase, NY.

This mobile sweepstakes is well made because it fits the promotional moment well. This sweepstake runs with Regal Cinema during the pre-movie commercials. Moviegoers are instructed to send a text message with the code found on their Pepsi soft drink cup to a shortcode for a chance to win instantly.

The components that make this mobile sweepstake likely to succeed are:

  1. Right timing– During the pre-movie commercial run when moviegoers are awaiting the feature film.
  2. Target- Young demographic of moviegoers who are well aware and very comfortable with using text (SMS) messaging.
  3. Channel: The easiest and fasted way to enter a sweepstake is through texting in (text-to-win).
  4. Incentive: Participants will know right away if they have won one of instant win prizes or they remain entered to win the grand prize trip to the Oscars.

Good job Pepsi!

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One Direction Instant Win Sweepstakes Via SMS Entry Is What Makes You Beautiful

Mondelez (Trident, Stride and Dentyne) is targeting the chewing-gum-loving teenagers who are also the largest text-(SMS)-messages-loving demographic. Using SMS text messages as the sweepstakes entry method is a no brainer. SMS also makes truly an “instant” win sweepstakes. You text in and you get an immediate response saying whether you won or not. See screenshots below.

All this is supported by a mobile optimize entry form and a desktop entry form. Mondelez does a good job at executing this sweep.

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Crunch Pak Mobile Coupons Back-to-School Promotion

Mobiel Coupons -momares.com

  • Crunch Pak, an industry leader in fresh sliced apples, is offering a back-to-school promotion via its electronic billboard in New York City’s Time Square.
  • Consumers can “text the word APPLES to the number 65047” for a special offer. When consumers do so, they will be sent a link to a coupon for $1 off any size package of Crunch Pak sliced apples.
  • Tony Freytag, senior vice president of sales and marketing for the Cashmere, WA-based company, said in a press release. “We are excited to see the response and we’re fairly certain no other produce company will have this type of back-to-school promotion this fall.”
  • Crunch Pak is giving the digital coupon a unique number in order to track the redemption rate and measure how many people view and respond to messages on the billboard.
  • Marcos Menendez, chief executive officer of Momares, the company managing the electronic coupon for Crunch Pak, said mobile coupons perform very well in terms of redemption.
  • “Mobile sweepstakes, contests and coupons are the most effective way to build a database of mobile customers,” Menendez said in the press release. “Our mobile coupon campaigns average 10 percent redemption rates; text (SMS) coupon delivery rates are 95 percent.
  • Mobile coupon program customer retention rates are 98 percent, which means there is a very low unsubscribe, opt-out rate,” Menendez added in the press release. “Mobile coupons are stored in the customer’s mobile phone and are carried with the customer to the store. Coupon code can be offered for redemption or a barcode mobile coupon shown for scanning.”
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The Anatomy of a Mobile Sweepstakes Campaign

Sweepstakes, contests and giveaways used to be reserved for Fortune 500 companies. That’s because companies needed large budgets to advertise the sweepstakes, hire a fulfillment house to deal with thousands of paper entries and organize participant entry information. It was a labor intensive process.

Those days are quickly passing. With a mobile phone in everyone’s hand, a participant can simply text to enter an SMS sweepstakes (Text KEYS to 65047 to enter now!) or complete a mobile entry form from the comfort of their smartphone (www.floridakeyswin.com). This makes the creation, management and prize giving of a sweepstakes far more cost-effective than ever before.

Sweepstakes (where random winners are drawn) and contests (where a skill is needed to win) are tried and proven marketing tactics that work. In the U.S., some early examples of its use date back to 1941 with the Parkway Margarine “Free Food” Contest. Today, sweepstakes and contests are everywhere, including ongoing programs, such as McDonald’s® Monopoly Instant Win Games, Coke ™ Rewards Sweepstakes and of course Publisher’s Clearing House. They work and work very well, offering many advantages to marketers.

The benefits of mobile sweepstakes and contest marketing:

  • Buzz: sweepstakes create tremendous word of mouth. The Florida Keys “Win a Florida Keys Vacation and Experience Key West BrewFest” sweepstakes (above) generated a huge reaction in social media and on blogs, sweepstakes sites and elsewhere. In the first 3 hours alone, it received more than 1,000 visitors and nearly 400 “likes” and 600 “shares” on the Florida Keys Facebook fan page.
  • Increase Your Email and Mobile Database: Sweepstakes and contests usually ask for name, email and address. Mobile sweepstakes take it a step further by gathering the mobile number as well. This increases the email and mobile marketing database tremendously and allows marketers to contact subscribers via text message and email after the sweepstakes is over.
  • High Return on Investment (ROI): The cost of setting up a mobile sweepstakes is far lower than the cost involved in traditional “paper entry” sweepstakes. The mobile entry component makes it very easy for the participant to enter. No forms to fill or staff needed to gather them. Mobile text-in entry increases the number of participants substantially. And the more participants you have, the lower the cost per entry. The ROI can be calculated by total entries or total qualified leads generated. ROI can be taken a step further by factoring in social media reach and new website visitors.

The Main Elements of a Mobile Sweepstakes

Goal: The objective of the sweepstakes needs to be clarified and kept top of mind in all activities. If it’s lead generation, the participants should be pre-qualified upon entry to facilitate the sales follow-up efforts. If it’s for branding, then promotion and related marketing and social networks should be leveraged as much as possible. If market research is a priority, then a survey can be included as part of the entry process. A marketer should plan beforehand what he will do with the data once it’s collected and how that data will turn into actionable analysis and a marketing asset.

Privacy: A lot of personally identifiable data is collected upon entry, especially when participants enter from their mobile phones. Marketers need to have and adhere to a solid privacy policy and a strong data management platform to protect the participant’s data. And always offer a way to opt-out and completely eliminate that participant’s personal information from the database.

Prize: Bigger isn’t always better. It’s crucial to pick the right prize– a prize that appeals to the target audience your product or service is trying to reach. Are you a college targeting high school students? A cruise trip for two to Alaska may not be the best option for high school students, but a new iPad mini will be.

Legal “Official Rules”: Because of their potential for abuse, sweepstakes are heavily regulated. In the U.S. all states have laws covering sweepstakes, sometimes resulting in exceptions, depending on where the entrant lives. Sweepstakes and contests are also regulated by U.S. Federal Trade Commission on a national level. Age requirements, date of birth, state of residency and the monetary value of the prize all affect how sweepstakes’ Official Rules are assembled. The Sweepstakes Official Rules should be reviewed by an attorney specializing in promotion marketing laws.

Mobile Partner: Whether you are an ad agency or a company, picking the right mobile sweepstakes partner is key. The mobile partner should be able to provide you with the services of executing and running a mobile sweepstakes. The mobile partner should also have the technical know-how to put together a text-to-win program and create mobile-optimized entry pages to capture participant’s information. A mobile sweepstakes partner should have the technology platform to provide a short code (text KEYS to 65047, for example), gather a database of mobile entries and provide reports as to the status of the program. They will also provide prize drawing, awarding and fulfillment services. A mobile sweepstakes partner will recommend Official Rules and promote your sweepstakes through their own channels. And when it’s all over, a mobile partner should provide post-sweepstake mobile engagement ideas to continue to drive the goals of the campaign and leverage the database of leads.

Fulfillment: A winner must be picked randomly and the prize awarded with the time limits that were set in the Official Rules. The winner must be contacted and a Declaration of Compliance, Liability and Publicity Release should be received before any prize is delivered. Based on the value of the winnings, a 1099 tax form needs to be sent to the winner as well. Fulfillment it’s a detailed and necessary process to avoid any future legal complications.

If you want to reach your mobile consumer, a mobile sweepstakes is absolutely the best way to do so. It allows the marketer to gather a detailed, permission-based profile of your mobile customer. Above all, it can create a fun, buzz-worthy event to energize current customers and reach new ones.

Comments? Tell me on Facebook, Twitter or email us at support@momares.com.

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FIU Online Launches Mobile Sweepstakes

FIU Online Sweepstakes

Florida International University is in the right place to meet higher demand for online degree programs. And with a new mobile sweepstakes, the university is getting the word out to future students who want to go mobile with their studies.

Are you ready to go mobile?

Whether in your career or personal life, it’s time to consider going mobile.  Get the degree you always wanted, improve your career skills or seek professional development at FIU Online.

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Clamato Does Away with Sweepstake Entry Forms. Just Text-to-Enter.

Clamato Text In Sweepstakes Sweeppea

Clamato, that tasty tomato and clam juice beverage that goes so well with beer and hangovers has made it dead-easy for participants to enter their BBQ grill sweepstakes. All you have to do is send a text message with the word CLAMATO to the number 97579 to enter.  You instantly back the text message entry confirmation with the response below. That’s it, no form, no more information needed. In one second you submitted your entry. This increases sweepstake participants and provides the marketer with an opt-in mobile database to send coupons and offers from Clamato.  Beautiful!

If you are interested in setting up a mobile sweepstake or adding text-to-enter capabilities to your sweepstakes or contest with can provide an end-to-end mobile sweepstake solution. Contact us at support@momares.com

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Bass Pro Shops Mobile Campaign Baits But Fails to Hook


I came across this sign at a Bass Pro Shops store and it immediately captured my attention. It was creative, humorous and perfectly placed at eye level at the entry way of a cashier’s line. Its location ensured good exposure to all customers, those buying and those waiting in line to pay. It couldn’t be missed!

Why should I sign up?

Even though the call-to-action didn’t offer an instantaneous reward for joining, I thought the ad was good enough to help increase their database of mobile and email subscribers. The word “alerts” may communicate “deals, offers or something special” to some customers, so it could work even though a clear incentive for signing up was not expressed. A better idea would have been to offer an immediate 10% off purchase. This kind of incentive is likely to increase signups especially in an area where customers waiting to pay are thinking about the cost of their purchases.

I’m confused

Putting the incentive issue aside, the call to action to join by texting BASSPRO (keyword) to the short code was pretty good. Even though I think scanning a QR is a cumbersome and embarrassing process, I did scan the QR to check out the site.

The sign says one thing but the QR code does another?

I was expecting that by scanning the QR code, it would open my text (SMS) application and show the keyword in the message field and the short code number in the send-to field, ready for opt-in. To my surprise, the QR code took me to a mobile website that asked for my email to subscribe. I was confused. If the sign said to sign up for mobile AND email alerts, how was I supposed to get mobile text alerts if the QR code landing page only asked me for my email?

Keep it simple or you’ll confuse the customer

This is the kind of misused opportunity that happens when you mix your mobile channels. Bass Pro Shops is telling the customer one thing, “sign up for mobile AND email alerts,” but the channels (QR and SMS) are leading in two separate directions. The QR is for email sign up and the text is for the mobile alerts. Unfortunately that was not explained. It was not obvious in the ad and was confusing for the consumer to decipher.

Make your call-to action crystal clear

What Bass Pro Shops should do is first get rid of the QR code and just offer one simple call to action “Text BASSPRO to 43902” to join our mobile AND email lists.

The customer would text the word and get a confirmation of opt-in to the mobile alerts program along with a link to the email signup landing page. If Bass Pro Shops wanted to offer email or mobile signup separately, the ad needed to clarify that. It could say “To receive our text message alerts, text the word BASSPRO to the number 43902” or “To receive our email alerts, scan the QR code or visit this website address.” Adding the website address under the QR code is always a good idea. It gives the customer a preview of what to expect from the scan and if the customer doesn’t have a QR scanner app or doesn’t know how to scan, he can always type in the web address on their smartphone.

Lesson: Test all of your ads in real life

It’s important for marketers to always test their call-to-action display ads in their real environment. This helps them understand what the interaction is like between the ad and the consumer in the real world. Have you come across any examples good ads that don’t work in real life? The billboard phone number that is too small to read? Tell us in a comment below.

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Wheat Thins Text-to-Win Makes It Dead Easy to Enter the Sweepstakes

Wheat Thins, those adorable wheat crackers are giving away 5 flatscreen TV’s just in time for college basketball’s NCAA March Madness. What is truly mad about this sweepstakes is how easy it is to submit your entry. Want to win a TV? Just send a text message with the word WHEATTHINS to the phone number 63065 (short code) and you are in. No from to fill out. Not even a website form asking for additional information. Just send a text message. This text-to-win sweepstakes entry process will undoubtedly result in far more participants than any other means of sweepstake entry submissions. True to its strategic approach Mondelez (parent company of Nabisco) is going ahead and dedicating more of its budget to mobile. Mondelez is taking the lead in mobile and will reap the benefits of obtaining permission to communicate with their customers and on most the important screen…their mobile phone.

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KFC Uses Text (SMS) To Make Sweepstakes Entry a Breeze

KFC’s and Dr. Pepper’s “From Medium to Larger than Life” sweepstakes offers participants a chance to win a trip to the Academy of Country Music Awards. What makes this sweepstake truly remarkable is not the prize but how easy it is to enter. All participants have to do is just send a text with the code found on the soda cup to a short code and that’s it! You’re in!

What I like most of all is that it’s tied to a purchase. In order to get the code you must buy a soda and no one at KFC just buys a soda. The purchase usually includes a meal. A one-two punch. You can also go the mobile site and enter for free with no purchase but you have to register and fill out the form which is tedious and not as easy as sending a text-to-enter. KFC’s done a good job at properly using mobile to increase to sweepstakes participants. Through the sweepstakes, KFC will build database of mobile subscriber that they will use to send offers and coupons via text message. Well done! (pun intended)

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Disney’s Fantasyland Sweepstakes Pays Lip Service to Mobile

Disney Stores’ new sweepstakes offers a vacation getaway for 5 days/4 nights to the New Fantasyland® at Walt Disney World® Resort. Nice! Fantasyland is the biggest expansion in Magic Kingdom® Park history.

Daytime Phone = Mobile Phone?

Disney does a great job of setting up a simple mobile website to promote the sweepstakes and offer a mobile form for entry. What I found particularly interesting is that Disney doesn’t ask for a mobile phone number as part of the entry. It’s a mobile site, right? And you’d think the customer must be mobile savvy? Instead they ask for a “Daytime Phone.” Not “Home Phone” or “Office Phone,” but daytime phone. In this mobile age, what is your daytime phone? Home phone? Work phone? Or is it an indirect way of asking for your mobile number? If so, why not just ask for the mobile phone? After all, if you enter the sweepstakes and win, wouldn’t you like to be informed right away?

Is Disney’s Mobile Marketing on Auto-Pilot?

If they’re on auto-pilot and creating a mobile site with a standard form are part of the process, then what else are they missing? It makes you wonder if Disney marketers are making good use of the database of mobile numbers they can get or if they’re avoiding having to create a new campaign for mobile marketing. Why set up a mobile sweepstakes site, if mobile marketing isn’t part of the plan? Are marketers just paying lip service to mobile? Or is it a missed opportunity to capture the most important number in a customer’s life?

What do you think? Comment below.