SMS Case Studies

MimNight-SMS Campaign









SMS Case Study – Nimnicht Family of Dealerships
By Giselle Tsirulnik

January 27, 2010

Name and city and state of marketer
Nimnicht at The Avenues, Jacksonville, FL

Name and city and state of agency or marketing services firm
Ballyhoo Mobile Marketing Inc., Jacksonville, FL

Campaign/program name
SMS Leveraging of Traditional Mediums and Double Opt-in

Eight weeks

Common short code and keywords used
GMC to 72239, AVENUES to 72239, CHEVY to 72239

1. Utilize targeted keywords on multiple radio stations to gauge ROI
2. Build a large mobile database for service specials, event pushes
3. Utilize double opt-in campaigns to generate warm leads and thus earn sales

Target Audience
Adults ages 18-40 who are open to a new/used vehicle purchase

Utilize text-to-win opportunities that fit the car brand on local radio. Examples during the promotional period include:
– A text to win Taylor Swift ticket giveaway to target potential Pontiac buyers on a top rated CHR station
– A text to win GMC Sierra on a local country station
– A text to win Pro Bowl tickets on a local talk radio station

Call To Action
Text to Win tags were added to current radio spots.

Energetic radio commercials were recorded, which listed the keyword and short code a minimum of two times per ad.

After a significant database was built, an offer was pushed that was valuable only to those people genuinely open to purchasing a new or used vehicle.

These people were then considered tangible leads for the dealership; each was called and personally invited in for a test drive.

The dealership generated 4,000 mobile opt-ins. After the double opt-in request, the program created 370 workable leads (9.25 percent).

In addition, because of the targeted use of keywords and planned promotions, Nimnicht dealer group was able to effectively gauge dollars spent on radio, thus allowing them to plan their marketing more efficiently.

What Next
The dealership has now begun to include mobile in its newspaper ads so customers can instantly search their inventory in more depth.

Ballyhoo Mobile Marketing created a template in the software so the dealership can update this weekly with ease.

Additionally, the dealership is utilizing mobile at their upcoming auto show to stand out from other show participants and capture leads.

Lessons Learned
The more broad a giveaway’s reach, the more filtering has to be done.

Surprise Finding
When the value of 370 double opt-in participants specifically interested in the purchase of a new car was analyzed, the ROI for the campaign (even when combined with radio dollars spent) was extremely high.

Strategy quote from brand executive
“The Nimnicht Family of Dealerships wanted to use mobile to grow a database and reach our customers in the way they communicate,” said Lauren Dozier, director of marketing and advertising, Nimnicht Family of Dealerships.

“Utilizing mobile has allowed us to build a stronger and deeper brand relationship with potential new customers,” he said. “As an added bonus, we were able to analyze the strength of our radio partners by judging the mobile response, which has helped us plan our marketing more efficiently.”

What challenge did mobile address quote
“Mobile addressed several challenges for us,” Ms Dozier said. “First, simple SMS helped us build a one-to-one relationship with both current and new customers.

It allowed us to communicate with them and actively drive sales,” she said. “Second, mobile helped us stand out from surrounding dealers; our advertisements stood out, had fresh call-to-action statements, and generated immediate tangible leads.

Finally, mobile has helped us monitor our advertising and measure each ad’s effectiveness.”

Giselle Tsirulnik is deputy managing editor on Mobile Marketer and Mobile Commerce Daily. Reach her at



Piedmont Hospital


Piedmont Hospital Combines SMS with Social Awareness

28 OCT 2012
One of the greatest ways for a company to employ SMS while maintaining
relevancy is to offer advice or do social good- it’s not always about couponing!

One of the best examples of this is out of Atlanta. Piedmont Hospital partnered with the Cox Radio station 97.1 The River. The goal was to create an ongoing program that involved radio and print as well as some “new technology” to educate women about the importance of self breast exams as well as providing a monthly reminder to do the exam. A big priority for Piedmont was to stand out in the crowd during Breast Cancer Awareness month.

A brainstorming session with the client that included three levels of contact. We explored what were the pieces of the program that was sold that they liked, how could we replicate those or even make them better and how could we add some “technology” into the program.

The Idea: We built on a few key things that came out of a brainstorming session – the most important being a text campaign. Women would text “breast” to a number for a monthly reminder to do their self exam, the bounce back says “thanks you for taking charge of your health with the Doris Shaheen Breast Cancer Center at Piedmont Hospital”, and we decided to call it “BreasText”. The morning show host of the River has fought her breast cancer battle very publicly on the air and is a big fan of Piedmont Hospital, so the station was able to have her record the commercials to run on the River and sister AC station B98 in September – to beat the “October rush”, as well as one week a month all year.

The Results: Over 1,000 people opted in to the program over the course of the year. Not a SINGLE person opted out of the program. The program is in review to be renewed for 2014!

Not only has social good been combined with a great SMS campaign, but a fantastic database has been produced to further push services for the clinic. Plans for 2014 include support group reminders, event announcements, and special “tour the clinic” days.



Radio WAPE Uses Text Marketing

Success in Radio – WAPE

Name and city and state of marketer:
WAPE 95.1 FM, Jacksonville, FL

Campaign/Program name:
Listener Engagement through SMS Programs


Common short code and keywords used:
APE to 72239

1.    Engage listeners in radio station dialogue
2.    Elicit song requests from listeners through the mobile channel
3.    Give on-air personalities a new and relevant tool in the studio
Target audience:
Adults ages 18-35 who are avid WAPE listeners

Utilize a custom software setup to simultaneously allow the radio station to:
–    Engage listeners in a chat function
–    Pull and collect song requests via SMS
–    Actively send invites/offers to station listeners
Call to Action:
Text your song requests and listen to hear it played, Text to Win concert tickets, and Text to be on the air with the Big Ape Morning Mess morning show.

WAPE strategically launched their new mobile capabilities live during the morning show. The morning show personalities dedicated an entire segment to the feature, read texts on the air in real-time, and responded to chosen listeners.

The radio station began receiving texts at a rate of 200 per minute. This inspired other listeners, gave the radio station a great story about the passion of their listeners, and brought a live element to the entire station.

What next:
The dealership is spreading unique mobile features to each daypart and each on-air personality. These unique features will be used to freshen content, drive station promotions, and excite listeners. Additionally, the station has begun collecting database opt-ins on their website with our custom online signup widget.

Lessons Learned:
Radio listeners are craving this technology and react accordingly once it is embraced by their favorite station.

Surprise Finding:
When the value of 370 double opt-in participants specifically interested in the purchase of a new car was analyzed, the ROI for the campaign (even when combined with radio dollars spent) was extremely high.


wxxj-Success with SMS Marketing


SMS Success in Radio – WXXJ

Mobile Marketer Case Study

Name and city and state of marketer:
WXXJ/ X102.9 Alternative Rock Radio, Jacksonville, FL

Campaign/Program name:
Text to Screen Concert Promotion

Four hours

Common short code and keywords used:
X1029 to 72239

1.    Engage concert attendees
2.    Increase the size of the radio station database, specifically with listeners they know respond to their concerts
3.    Get a bounceback message into the hands of listeners instantly
Target audience:
Adults ages 18-35

Utilize Text to Screen software on a jumbotron to next to the stage and take advantage of the social nature of crowds by giving them a public place to engage with their favorite radio station and other station listeners.

Call to Action:
Text in your comment and see it instantly on the big screen!

Instructional tickers were scrolled along the bottom of the jumbotron screen, informing attendees of how to get send their message to the screen. Since X1029 has been taking song requests and running on-air contests via text for more than a year, their listeners are accustomed to mobile interaction with the station. As each person sent a message to the screen they were added to the radio station’s mobile database and they received a bounceback message.

The average rate of messages being sent to the screen was an astonishing 100 per minute! Now, taking the ever-critical view from a marketer’s seat this means that a sponsor of the Text to Screen interaction would have put a whopping 2,000 coupons or offers in the hands of a specific target audience in just the first 20 minutes of the show. That’s marketing power!

What next:
X1029 continues to run contests and take song requests via mobile. They now also have a subgroup in their database of listeners they know attended a packed concert, most likely had a good time, and have an interest in X1029 concerts. For the next show, they can send this subgroup a push message to extend an early invite, presale specials, etc.

Lessons Learned:
The more regularly a marketer utilizes mobile, the easier it is for them to get their targets to respond when called upon. Thus, making mobile a regular part of the marketing mix is critical.

Surprise Finding:
We were surprised at the rate of response. It was literally astounding to see how fast messages were being sent to the screen and how the entire audience seemed to be interacting.

Strategy quote from brand executive (with name, title, company, city and state):
“We wanted to differentiate ourselves from other rock concerts going on around the area. No one has utilized mobile during an event yet, and for us to be interactive with our listeners means that we can offer those listeners a unique experience that they can take with them.” Liz Goshert, Promotions Director X102.9 WXXJ, Jacksonville, Florida

What challenge did mobile address quote (from same executive above):
“Not only could we be interactive with our listeners, but we utilized the participation numbers to keep sponsors interested in our events. For an advertiser to sponsor this Text to Screen, they would receive an unbelievable number of impressions, thus making their investment much more valuable.”





Car Dealerships
Anyone who has ever done so will know that buying a car is a massive commitment, one that should impact on your life for years to follow. As a car dealership you know that because of this your reputation is everything. This means that your customer service and the quality of their experience with you is so important.

Sales Managers
Sales managers will know how competitive the car retail business can be and how any advantage can mean the difference between a good month and an excellent month. Using FASTSMS you can text your prospects about upcoming open days, launches, events and special offers.

“We were delighted with the FASTSMS campaign we ran recently, when we sent a message on a Friday evening to existing customers to advise them of a special short term offer we had available on a number of new cars. The response was amazing and by 4.00pm on the Sunday we had sold 5 new cars and by the Tuesday this had risen to 9 as a direct result of the SMS invitation. Stunning ! Thank you!”

Rob Haylett – Marketing Manager, Payne’s Ford Dealerships

Running competitions by SMS is a great way to add opt-in subscribers to your mailing list for future promotions and it’s so easy because you know exactly what interests your potential customers.

Publishing an SMS ‘textline’ with your other contact details is a great way to extend office hours with minimal staff commitments. This can often give a prospect the opportunity to commit to something at a time that suits them.

Service Managers
Service managers know how important customer care is to a successful dealership. Using SMS you can send customers a highly targeted message at just the right time, including…

Reminders – Text your customers when their MOT or next service is due
Fault Reports – Notify customers immediately in the case of recall campaigns
Customer Alerts – When their car is ready or there’s a delay in pick up time, send them a text.


We suggest ways that your car dealership can use SMS marketing to enhance your business.

To start with SMS is 5 times more responsive and 8 times more responsive than email. Maybe you phone your customers, well SMS will dramatically reduce the cost of your phone bills by up to 95%. As well as saving you money it can also save you time, to phone 15 customers could take up to 45 minutes, where to text 15 customers would take 1 minute.

It will also help you build customer loyalty and help your business grow by word of mouth, 23% of people will show or forward an SMS marketing message to a friend. (Mobile Marketing Association) Not only that but your customers can reply to your text which in turn you can reply to them.

You can segment and target particular customers to send them tailored messages, maybe regarding new tires, cars or just MOT’s.

The motor industry is not know for being green but using the SMS marketing would certainly boost your green credentials as sending a text is virtually carbon free.



RedTop Auto Auction Uses SMS Texting


ABC Red Top Mobile Marketing Case Study
Red Top Auto Auction, Auction Broadcasting Company, parent company to the Atlanta, GA-based ABC Red Top Auto Auction, has nine auction houses across the country. For those who are unfamiliar with auto auctions, their primary business is to act as a broker to both independent dealers and franchises within a given area, helping sellers move inventory quickly, and connecting that inventory with other dealers looking to buy. All interested buyers come to a closed auction to view the latest vehicles up for sale.

Jackie Calvert, Marketing Director for ABC Red Top-Atlanta, spoke about their SMS campaigns.

ABC Red Top’s Georgia office hosts two sales per week, the largest being their dealer-only auction. Because there are other competing auto auctions in the area, the goal is to get as many buyers to attend their weekly auction as possible. In the past, Red Top has used telemarketers and mass faxes to the dealers in their area to inform then of special events, auction news, etc. For an idea of scope, there are approximately 3,300 dealers in their area, and usually 5-7 buyers within each dealership.

About one year ago, while on a conference call with their corporate office, Calvert explored the idea to send text messages to their regular buyers. It sounded like a great way to break through the clutter, and she immediately searched online for a suitable SMS service.

Calvert’s Atlanta office has a CRM system with all of their buyers’ and sellers’ contact information. Clients are given the option to provide their cell phone number to allow ABC Red Top-Atlanta to contact them about upcoming auctions by phone call or text message. Within minutes of creating her Texting account, Calvert was able to export a group of opted-in contacts and import them into two different groups: independent dealers and franchises.

After buying message credits, Calvert was ready to send her first message:


This Friday @ 11AM 5/16 OVER 1000 CARS!

Win $10,000 GUARANTEED & $1,000 Early Bird! Free Lunch before sale!!

Now, Calvert regularly sends out alerts describing how many cars will be auctioned off in the upcoming week, special payment promotions like 30-day floats, giveaways, and other incentives.

ABC Red Top Auto Auction prides themselves on top-notch customer service. They are known to treat small, independent dealers with as much respect and courtesy as the large franchises, which greatly increases customer retention. Their use of SMS text messaging contributes to this “personal-touch” customer service mindset. In addition to increased overall attendance, buyers respond to messages requesting information about specific cars, asking general questions, etc. Because sending mass texts is so quick and efficient, Calvert has been able to cut back on other, more costly, forms of marketing, saving the company money in our current, challenging economic environment.



 5 Reasons Why You Can’t Afford To Ignore Mobile Marketing

1. It’s the most responsive direct marketing channel available.
Using bulk sms as a way of communicating an offer to your customers is astonishingly effective. In fact, according to the Mobile Marketing Association, sms is 5 times more responsive than direct mail. With open rates to e-mail collapsing, companies need to find new and innovative ways of communicating.

2. It will make your Finance Director smile.
SMS marketing is very cost effective.  Bulk SMS messages cost just a few pence per text and with response rates of up to 15%, you’ll get a great return on your marketing investment.

3. It will save your precious time.
How much time do you spend on the phone getting bogged down in conversations with clients of colleagues, when all you wanted to do was get a simple piece of information across? It’s incredibly frustrating. Using sms takes a fraction of the time of a phone call and costs considerably less. Your time will be freed up to spend on more productive activities!

4. You’ll be gaining a competitive edge.
The take up of companies using an sms service for their communications is still very low, our estimate is that about 32% of UK businesses are using text in any meaningful way. Good news for companies like ours but also good news for you. If you adopt a positive, proactive sms strategy, using a reliable sms gateway, there’s a good chance that you’ll be doing something that your competitors aren’t.

5. You’ll be saving the planet.

Bulk sms is a green way of communicating. For every 10,000 pieces of A4 paper that your company uses, you consume 2.5 mature trees. Sending a text is virtually carbon free.

If you’re not yet using an sms service in your business, we’d love to have a chat about how it might work for you.

Please fill out a Support Ticket at our Help Desk at GM

We’d love to hear from you.