Digital Offers Archives - Codebroker

Digital Offers

Mobile Coupon Marketing vs. Traditional Offers
June 4, 2019

The Battle of Mobile Couponing versus Offers

Written by: Sue LeClaire

Before you can decide whether to deliver offers or mobile couponing offers  to your customers, you need to understand the difference. Although many use the terms interchangeably, there is a fundamental philosophy that sets offers and coupons distinctly apart: ACCOUNTABILITY.


By far, the most common type of discount available to consumers are offers. Offers come in many forms such as, “buy X quantity, get one free.” Retailers like using offers because it gets consumers to buy more.

In the mobile space, customers who have signed up for SMS lists will typically receive offers text message promotions. My SMS app currently has numerous “limited offer” messages from retailers. All of the messages contain a promo code to present at check-out to obtain the discount. The length of the promo code often tells me if the retailer gave me a generic or a single-use offer. 

Everyone on the planet can use a generic promo code to receive the discount. As a consumer, I can use it 100 times in one day as well as share it with friends and family. Generic offers tend to be predictable. Generic offers will never inspire me to “drop everything and run to the store because I have to use the coupon now.” My reaction is more akin to “next time I’m out running errands I’ll use the coupon.” An example of a generic offer is $5 OFF a $100 purchase.

From a retailer’s perspective, more is better when delivering a generic offer to consumers such as “buy 10 pizzas, get one free”. On the other hand, more is not always better when a retailer decides to use one-time-use offers (e.g., $10 off to shop in-store).  $10 off could become an expensive promotion if customers are able to use the offer with no restrictions.


On the other hand, retailers can deliver more generous discounts to customers by using coupon platform software that employs single-use coupons. These are digital coupons that can only be used once. This include reliable security measures that eliminate a retailer’s liability and minimizing fraud. Second, if the single-use coupon is dynamic – updated every time a customer views it, it can be managed in multiple channels providing a truly unique customer experience. Finally, retailers can track coupon usage.

The coupon platform software should include a security model that is two-fold: 1) the coupon codes have to be unique and; 2) the coupon codes link to unique identifiers. For example, a unique identifier could be a person’s mobile device number, a loyalty program number, a smartphone app ID, an email address, etc. The combination of a unique coupon code and unique identifier, such as mobile phone number, ensures the mobile device (or owner of the mobile device) receives only one coupon form the mobile coupon marketing program. Even when deleted, the person will receive the same coupon if they attempt to retrieve it a second time.

Given that consumers are multi-device, they should be able to view the coupon – the same coupon – in the channels of their choosing. Channels could include email, mobile web, a retailer’s mobile app, Facebook, Passbook, etc. The combination of a unique coupon code and channel ID lets the retailer both deliver and invalidate the coupon in all of the channels their customers choose to view it. The retailer can even mark the coupon as redeemed so the customer knows it has been used and doesn’t re-present the coupon at check-out. Dynamically updating coupons in all channels provides a true omnichannel customer experience.

The icing on the cake is the ability to track the purchase funnel via the coupon. Using the coupon codes and linked attributes, a retailer will know who received the coupon, when it was viewed, in which channel, and where it was redeemed. Whew! That’s a lot of customer intelligence that can be applied to the delivery of future coupons.

All three of these capabilities encapsulate ACCOUNTABILITY – only the number of coupons issued can be redeemed; a customer can receive only one coupon; if they delete the coupon and try to retrieve it, they will receive the same coupon as before; and the retailer knows by whom, when and where the coupon was used.

Offers will continue to be a popular vehicle for retailers to deliver discounts to consumers. Primarily because they’re easy – anyone can create one. Hopefully, in the mobile offers versus coupons, it is clear that coupons are different than offers. A coupon is a liability and should be treated as such. Providing digital coupons (not offers) can create a unique customer experience and provide the information retailers need to create even more compelling coupons for their customers.

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Loyalty Program Growth through Customer Engagement
October 14, 2015

Written by: Stefanie Gray

Loyalty program growth can be a daunting undertaking. Program expansion can depend on a number of factors, such as Marketing’s advertising budget, store ops’ willingness to support in-store sign placement, or something as simple as creating a compelling incentive.
loyalty program growth

Following is a CodeBroker retailer’s creative idea: leverage their existing loyalty program member’s to stimulate growth by more than 20% in a three week timeframe.

Mobile Promotion: Friend-2-Friend


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8 Ways to Drive In-store Mobile Engagement
September 29, 2015

Written by: Stefanie Gray

Consumers still prefer the in-store experience to online shopping according to a 2014 A.T. Kearney study entitled “On solid Ground: Brick-and-mortar Is the Foundation of Omnichannel Retailing.” A more recent study, “The Reality of Retail Report,” April 2015 by InReality, further supports that a retailer’s brick-and-mortar presence is integral to the consumer’s shopping journey. Key findings from both reports:
in-store mobile engagement

  • 95% of all retail sales are captured by retailers with a brick-and-mortar presence (A.T. Kearney).
  • 75% of consumers use their mobile device in store to assist in the path-to-purchase (InReality).
  • Two thirds of consumers who purchase online use the store before or after the transaction (A.T. Kearney).
  • Shoppers are gathering information both online and in-store, thus entering the store at differing stages of the buy cycle (InReality).

Based on these reports, not only are physical stores still relevant but it is important to note that mobile marketing programs, such as promotional text messages and mobile coupons, are playing an increasingly larger role in the path-to-purchase. Based on years of experience working with some of the largest retailers in the US, following are eight ways in which our retailer customers improve in-store mobile engagement.


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Restaurants: Using SMS Marketing Lists to Drive Traffic During Off-peak Hours
August 21, 2015

Written by: Joe Pappalardo

Every restaurant has a slow period. Often it’s the time between lunch and dinner or Tuesday evenings. In order to maximize revenue, your options are to either cut back on overhead or increase traffic during off-peak hours. Minimizing overhead can include measures such as:

  • Shutting off appliances that aren’t needed to save electricity (e.g., warming lights), or
  • Cross-training staff so that you don’t need a full crew when service is slow.

On the other hand, you can employ a variety of promotions, usually discounts and offers, to bring traffic into your restaurant to address idle staff and equipment. Some of our favorite promotions include:


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Restaurants Deliver Mobile Offers to Drive Engagement
August 4, 2015

Written by: Joe Pappalardo

Technology has the potential to have a huge impact on the restaurant industry. Two of the current top trends include mobile apps and mobile payment.

However, a potential obstacle in successfully implementing a mobile app or payment solution is the amount of resources they require to build and maintain. A relatively easy-to-deploy and complimentary technology that has tremendous value to restaurateurs is mobile offers.

Specifically, mobile offers and mobile coupons are proven to drive mobile app downloads, engagement and in-app conversions when delivered to a mobile app. In addition, the ability to redeem mobile offers lets restaurateurs track the entire purchase process providing insight into how mobile users shop.


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One Way to Tame the Cart Abandonment Beast
July 22, 2015

Written by: Sue LeClaire

A Growing Problem

Shopping cart abandonment rates are on the rise. According to a recent Baymard Institute study, average documented cart abandonment rate is 68.53% over the past nine years.
cart abandonment
If you look at rates on an annual basis, the abandonment rate has been steadily increasing about 2% each year. In 2013 alone, a Barilliance report found that 74% of consumers left a site with un-purchased merchandise in online shopping carts.


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Digital Offers Increase the Channel Conversion Rate
May 7, 2015

30% of Consumers Use Digital Offers from a Retailer’s Mobile App

Written by: Sue LeClaire

Digital coupons and mobile are here to stay. As much as some retailers would like to retreat from using offers as incentives to shop, other retailers realize that consumers are heavily influenced by the availability of offers. For those retailers who use digital coupons and mobile coupons as part of their pricing strategy, the current issue is the viability of digital offers. Even with all of the attention mobile coupons have received in the last several years, the use of paper-based coupons is still significantly higher than digital offers. Considering consumers have fully embraced mobile, it’s time for retailers to do likewise by fully embracing mobile coupons  and digital coupons via other channels besides paper (besides, it’s more cost effective to use mobile rather than continue to create and distribute paper-based offers).

According to a recent study, “The State of Digital Coupons”, “68% of consumers believe that coupons build brand awareness, 68% also state coupons generate loyalty.”

State of Digital Coupons Report

The same study goes on to state, 30% of consumers use digital offers from a retailer’s mobile app that they have downloaded to their mobile device. As both mobile coupon usage and mobile app downloads continue to rise (mobile app installation increased by 70% year over year in 2014, State of App Downloads and Monetization, 2014), in-app mobile coupon usage will increase.

Retailers committed to delivering mobile coupons and digital offers to consumers from within their mobile app have a unique opportunity to create a compelling customer experience designed to improve the direct channel conversion rate. Specifically, retailers can enhance their mobile app to deliver personalized digital offers that will build customer loyalty. The short-term benefit of customer loyalty is improving the in-app conversion rate. Longer term, retailers will realize a higher customer lifetime value.

Following are specific capabilities retailers can implement to enhance the in-app customer experience using mobile coupons and digital offers:

Personalized digital offers delivered to the retailer’s mobile app based on:

  • Past purchases. Mining a retailer’s CRM database can provide a wealth of data about their customers. Knowing what the customer purchased last and delivering a mobile offer for a complementary product can be a powerful tool in building brand loyalty. According to The State of Digital Coupons report, “47% of consumers are likely to try a new brand when receiving a coupon on their smartphone while shopping in-store.” For example, “Stephanie, Payson’s milk and salmon are on sale this week” where Stephanie regularly purchases the store brand milk and salmon.
  • Specific customer attributes. Messages with data applicable to a particular customer (e.g., first name) is a great way for retailers to engage with their customers. Examples such as “Dan, your Rx is ready for pickup at the 6th & Broadway store” provide the personal connection that allows the retailer to rise above the noise creating a truly unique shopping experience.
  • Generic attributes. The next best practice is delivering digital offers based on more generic data such as a customer’s sex, age, or where they live. Delivering a mobile coupon in January for shoes to customers who live in the south versus boots to their northern counterparts improves the quality of interaction between the retailer and their customer.
  • Location-based via beacons. By bringing consumers to a retailer’s mobile content quickly and effortlessly, the retailer links their soon-to-be customer to the information the consumer needs to make a decision to buy while still in-store. In addition, the retailer has the option to deliver a mobile coupon good for that day only as an added incentive to close the deal.

Capabilities retailers can provide when delivering digital offers to their mobile app that creates a unique customer experience:

  • Mark-as-redeemed. The retailer marks digital offers that have been delivered to their mobile app as redeemed after the consumer has presented the offer during check-out. Mark as redeemed eliminates any confusion on the customer’s part as to which coupons are still valid versus previously used or expired.
  • Automated reminders. Create a sense of urgency by alerting a retailer’s customers who have not yet redeemed their offer when it is about to expire. For example, send a PUSH notification to the retailer’s mobile app “Only 3 days left before your 10% OFF mobile coupon expires.”
  • Rolling expiration dates. Digital offers expire based on when they are delivered to the mobile app. For example, a digital coupon will expire three weeks from the day the customer requested the offer to be delivered to the mobile app. Once the mobile offer is used or expired, it is no longer valid.
  • Save mobile coupons to Passbook. The customer can leave the digital coupon in the retailer’s mobile app or load the coupon to Passbook, based on customer preference. If the coupon is saved to Passbook, it is automatically updated when the mobile offer is used (marked as redeemed) or expires preventing any confusion as to which passes are still valid.
  • Full integration with an online shopping cart. Retailers can eliminate the inevitable hunting for promo codes that happen just prior to checkout as all discount information is automatically carried forward to the online shopping cart. Automatically updating an online shopping cart can be addressed in a number of ways.

Retailers have a real opportunity to create a compelling mobile app experience for their customers. By delivering personalized digital offers and a unique experience, CodeBroker retailers have found that they are able to 1) grow monthly active user engagement as more consumers download a retailer’s mobile app to have access to digital offers, and 2) drive direct channel revenue by keeping customers in the mobile app to complete a shopping transaction by making it easy for customers use their digital offers.

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Consumers Want Promotion Text Messages While in Stores
March 27, 2015

Promotion Text Messages and Consumers

An article published yesterday in mCommerce Daily, MobileShopTalk caught our attention. The article is an excellent summary of a recent mobile promotions study conducted by Accenture.

mobile promotionsWritten by: Chuck Martin

There’s still somewhat of a gap between what mobile shoppers want and what retailers provide.

Many consumers say they want promotion text messages in-stores, but most retailers aren’t capable of delivering them, based on a new study.


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Promotion Text Messages Work with Baby Boomers
February 4, 2015

Promotion Text Messages Work with Baby Boomers

Too many times retailers discount Baby Boomers in their text message marketing strategy. The Holy Grail seems to be millenials. And while millenials do have purchase power and are tech-savvy, Baby Boomers have the disposable income and the resources to buy goods and services – not to mention they are far more tech savvy than we give them credit. A case in point, my mother.

My mother is 78 years old. She has been retired for 15 years. In the last 15 years she has embraced technology like a 14-year-old with a new iPhone. Every conversation begins with the latest gadget or app she’s either researching or purchased. Thankfully she has unlimited text messaging on her plan because she burns through them like water at a four-alarm fire. In addition to Facebook, texting is her go-to app to stay in contact with everyone – her bridge friends, knitting group, grandchildren, and the White House when she has bone to pick with Congress. In addition, she shops online, researches large purchases online, and has numerous retail apps on her mobile device that she regularly checks for information and offers.
baby boomers

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Why Mobile Coupons and Promotion Text Messages are Good Business
January 26, 2015

For many retailers, mobile coupons and promotion text messages are good business. Consumers routinely search for mobile coupons, and are also more responsive than ever to promotion text messages. As the mobile phone is quickly becoming the hub of engagement, delivering offers to a consumer’s mobile device only makes sense. For retailers ready to take the next step, following are 10 reasons why mobile coupons and promotion text messages work.

#1. Consistent Consumer Experience.

Since consumers are not wed to a particular channel, they should have the option to view and redeem their mobile coupons in the channel of their choosing (SMS, retailer’s app, Passbook, mobile web, email, etc.). The key to a consistent experience is ensuring that mobile coupons look the same, behaves the same, and expires in all the channels a consumer has chosen to view it – whether it’s a link in a promotion text message, or on a mobile website.

good business

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Text Message Marketing Software: Why it Works for Retailers
January 12, 2015

Text Message Marketing Software: 10 Reasons Why SMS Marketing Works for Retailers

#1. SMS List Sign-Up is Permission-based.

Consumers who sign-up for a retailer’s text message marketing list really want to start a dialog with the retailer. First, the consumer must text-in a keyword to the retailer’s shortcode or in other words, opt-in to the retailer’s SMS marketing list. Second, the consumer must confirm their wish to receive promotion text messages and SMS coupons from the retailer. Lastly, the retailer has to provide a means for the consumer to easily opt-out of the SMS marketing list at any time.

#2. Promotion Text Messages Work for Acquisition.

Using text message marketing software to send promotion text messages, a CodeBroker retail customer was able to add an average of 10,000 names per day to their text message marketing list over a three- to four-month time period. Several days the retailer saw over 25,000 sign-ups. Consumers clicked-through from a link in the promotion text message to a mobile web form to complete the sign-up process. By doing so, the retailer collected a full CRM record from new subscribers. Unique to CodeBroker is a behind-the-scenes security model that prevents customers from signing up multiple times to receive a generous sign-up offer.

mobile marketing tool

#3. Consumers are Highly Accessible.

2014 was the year we crossed the chasm where there were more mobile devices than people on the planet. According to GSMA’s real-time tracker, there are over 7.22 billion mobile devices compared to 7.19 people (US Census Bureau). Because mobile devices are personal, people keep their phone with them at all times and are constantly checking it for messages, emails, updates, etc. – making text message marketing software the perfect mobile marketing tool for a retailer to stay connected to their customers.

#4. Text Message Marketing is Immediate.

97% of people look at a text message within the first three minutes of receiving it. There are no other marketing channels that can claim an open rate of this magnitude. In addition, CodeBroker has observed that 20-50% of consumers click on a link in in promotion text messages to view mobile coupons. Some retailers have experienced click-thru rates on their promotion text messages as high as 72%.

#5. They get Right to the Point.

Marketers only have 160 characters to get their message across. If the retailer is delivering SMS coupons, the marketing message is even shorter if a link to the SMS coupons is included are the promotion text message. Promotion text messages put good copywriters to the test as the marketing message needs to be succinct and clever. But with a well-worded promotion text message, a sense of urgency can be created driving increased redemptions for SMS coupons.

#6. Promotion Text Messages are Interactive.

Text message marketing software is a great mobile marketing tool for retailers to engage with their customers. In addition to sending promotion text messages messages and SMS coupons, many retailers using text message marketing software develop promotions such as text-to-win, sweepstakes and voting in order to add variety and fun to the communication mix.

#7. Text Message Marketing Software Enables Retailer Responsiveness.

One of the best features of using text message marketing software is the ability for retailers to react instantly. Promotions can be set-up and sent to customers within a matter of minutes letting retailers be super responsive to the market. For example, promotion text messages CodeBroker retail customers have deployed include special discounts to move inventory that is not selling, reminder messages for an upcoming special event, or contingency offers to drive in-store traffic that are triggered at the last minute.

#8. Promotion Text Messages are Trackable.

A retailer can see how many times a customer has viewed a promotion text messages as well as when the offer was redeemed and at which location providing visibility into the complete path to purchase. And, with CodeBroker’s single-use coupons, coupon fraud and liability are greatly reduced as each customer receives and can redeem only one mobile coupon regardless of the number of times they view it.

#9. Proven ROI.

Based on recent findings, there’s no question retailer’s realize a significant return on their investment using text message marketing software. For just pennies a message sent, CodeBroker’s text message marketing software has helped retailers drive millions of dollars in incremental revenue per month for a single text message marketing promotion.

#10. Promotion Text Messages Amplify Other Programs.

Another interesting finding in a recent analysis of retailer’s using CodeBroker’s text message marketing software is that exceptional revenue results are realized when promotion text messages are layered with additional channels and coupled with reminder messages.

If you’re just beginning the process of evaluating text message marketing software as a marketing channel, we recommend you work with a solutions provider. There are many benefits to working with a text message marketing software provider. First, a provider will provide an easy-to-use web portal that will save you time when launching new programs and running reports. Second, account management/assistance becomes more important as your message volumes increase. A text message marketing software provider who has a lot of experience working with large retailers will ensure your campaigns run smoothly and the messages conform to current guidelines and policies allowing you to focus on creative ways to use a mobile marketing tool to engage with your customers.

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Mobile Coupon Marketing: Retailers Drive Incremental Revenue
January 6, 2015

Mobile Coupon Marketing Helps Retailers Drive Incremental Revenue

Mobile coupons help retailers drive increased revenue and customer engagement according to recent findings. CodeBroker’s in-depth analysis of our retail customer’s mobile coupon marketing promotions and associated redemption rates show significant payback to retailers who implement a thoughtful mobile coupon marketing strategy.

Specifically, CodeBroker observed that a successful mobile coupon marketing strategy is dependent on several factors. Namely, the value of the mobile coupons, the level of consumer engagement with the brand, the sense of urgency the retailer creates with the promotion, and the mobile coupon delivery channel all play a role in the level of ROI the retailer realizes.


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