Texting Still Has Game

The game is just beginning. Your brand category is advancing into mobile just as strategically as it is into social media. You’ve got your team franchise sponsorships set up. Your brand is getting in-game coverage on the media and in the arena. The only thing you’re missing in your plan is a short code SMS in-game campaign.
Ironically, you’re spending thousands, if not millions to be in the in-game 60 minute official clock portion of the event, yet you’re missing out on the most important five seconds of the game; the time it takes for fans to text your short code in to complete the team/fan/brand experience.
Social media is what every marketer is trying to win at these days, though when it comes to sports marketing Facebook’s sports stats loses to in-game texting. Brands are winning fans, but without mobile marketing they are losing a generation of buyers. Tagga’s mobile marketing solutions drive 10 times increased conversion to purchase for brands. A total of 88 percent of marketers plan to use mobile marketing this year, according to a survey from the Association of National Advertisers and the Mobile Marketing Association. Forrester predicts mobile ad spending will top $1 billion.
If you thought text messaging was just for Justin Bieber-loving tweens, you’re wrong; a new survey from Pew Internet says that 72 percent of adults also routinely send text messages. This shouldn’t be much of a surprise, as we know text messaging has been increasing at a stunning rate.
Chances are that if you are into texting on your mobile phone, you have sent a message to a five or six digit ‘phone’ number. Long popular outside of the U.S., short codes are being used for a variety of value-added services such as television voting, ordering ring tones, charity donations and in-game sports promotions before, during and after the game.
Marketers often take sports marketing and in-game sports to be the same thing. However, they are entirely different. Brands spend millions of dollars running on sports TV, radio, print and billboards but never give fans the opportunity to have the same feel of the game as if they were actually there. SMS short code promotions can do so for their fans whether they are attending the game or not. Often, sports-related in-game promotions are an after-thought, when they should be considered a key marketing element that your sports fan customers really enjoy. It brings the game right into their phone and makes the event that much more enjoyable.
SMS texting is a physical activity that is now second nature to most consumers. Short codes have the image of “cool.” Sports are now fashionable and cool everyday of the year. As compared to years ago, today sports are enjoyed by men, women, families and kids, all of whom enjoy texting. Mobile offers marketers the chance to build on the existing relationship between the fan and the team.
The game is on. Now is the time to let SMS put some points on your brand’s score board and convert those fans into customers.

Amielle Lake is CEO of Tagga Media, a mobile technology platform.

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