To enable retail/ businesses acquire and engage customers, SMS GupShup provides users with quick, effective, inexpensive, and measurable mobile marketing solutions. Beerud Sheth, Founder & CEO, SMS GupShup shares his exclusive views about this potential marketing medium.
Vrinda Oberai (VO): These days retailers are leveraging SMS marketing more than ever before. What is your take on the same?
Beerud Shah (BS): SMS marketing is the flavour defining the Indian market these days. SMS as a basic tool helps businesses drive measurable growth. SMS marketing has not only been used and endorsed by big business houses but is also helping small ‘kirana’ stores promote their businesses well.
VO: What kind of investment is required for using SMS marketing? What are the benefits of the initiative?
BS: Companies like SMS GupShup offer a wide gamut of products to the retailers to address the needs of both the small and large businesses. A grocery store can do a promotion for as low as Rs 200; a small coffee shop can run a world class effective loyalty management system for as low as Rs 5000.
The possibilities with a good SMS partner are undoubtedly immense for retailers. You can acquire customers, retain them, and build a long lasting relationship with them. There are real life examples of retailers driving customer volume and value through SMS marketing.
VO: How do the customers respond to the exercise?
BS: SMS marketing is seeing a double digit growth on a month-on-month basis across geographies. Customers who have used SMS as a marketing tool are seeking a complete CRM solution. SMS GupShup has taken leadership in offering a complete CRM solution (end-to-end solution from customer acquisition, retention, up gradation to referrals).
VO: How do you gauge the returns on investment for such exercises?
BS: The best thing about SMS based marketing is that it is not only quick and inexpensive but also measurable. The ROI on the exercise depends on the nature of business and the product used.
VO: How does the whole process work? Do you sign a contract with a retailer on a yearly basis or does the tenure last till the event lasts?
BS: There are different business models for different businesses. The work process takes into consideration the needs of the business. Tenure of contracts can be based on the event tenure, for example cricket etc. It can also be an ongoing agreement with large corporate, for instance BFSI’s etc.
SMS GupShup understands the needs of different segments of businesses and aligns the deliverables to expectations. We are deeply committed to our customers and partners irrespective of size and nature of business.
VO: Which category of retail approaches you the most?
BS: We get constant requests from retail brands across businesses including banking financial services and insurance, F&B, consumer majors, healthcare, consumer durables, entertainment etc. Our customers include the small retailer next door to the biggest corporate houses in the country.
VO: Cite an example, which you think would inspire other retailers to leverage SMS marketing.
BS: An optical lens major has about 100 retail outlets across the country. They were struggling with footfalls in their store and zeroed on ‘Mobile Marketing’ to address the issue. They partnered with SMS GupShup to run a ‘free eye testing’ campaign. In less than two weeks, the footfalls per store grew by 18 per cent with customer conversions up by three per cent.
To sum up, the best thing about an SMS campaign is its quick, effective and measurable response.