Retail stores hit target demographic with text message marketing

In marketing, it is crucial for businesses to understand the various nuances of their current and potential customers, and adapt accordingly. Behaviors, preferences and trends all must be considered. A number of fashion retailers catered towards teenage girls and young women understand this, and are now marketing to their customers by sending promotional text messages.

According to the Wall Street Journal, businesses including Charlotte Russe, Claire's Boutique and Vans have started sending SMS messages to customers. These include information about in-store sales, promotional codes and coupons. Recently, Charlotte Russe sent out a coupon for $1 sunglasses per every $30 purchase, and the promotion was met with tremendous success.

Most of the retailers indulging in this practice say that they have turned from running such promotions via email marketing to SMS messaging. Studies have shown that the average recipient is five times more likely to open a text message than an email. The discrepancy is even greater when considering these particular companies' target demographic.

According to the website Ask the Judge, texting amongst teens rose from 50 texts per day in 2009 to 60 texts per day in 2012. Meanwhile, only 6 percent of teenage girls admitted to checking email every day. Paul Hollowell, the director of marketing at Charlotte Russe, explained to the news source that the texting campaign has been much more successful with teenage girls than previous email campaigns.

Moreover, the sentiment shared among teen girls barely changes as they transition into adulthood. Grace Abruzzo, a 22-year-old student in Arizona and recipient of Charlotte Russe's promotional texts, told the news source that she prefers receiving texts over emails.

"I get a lot of junk email," she said. "With text messages, I can be selective."

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