SMS Helps Draper James Boost Customer Engagement, Drive Sales
The use of SMS as a customer engagement channel, including for customer service and marketing, is a growing trend that retailers are seeking to capitalize on. With consumers increasingly shopping with retailers across multiple channels, including mobile, it's not surprising that they're more willing to communicate with those businesses via SMS. Consider the following data from Attentive's 2021 SMS Marketing Consumer Trends Report:
- 56.7 percent of consumers primarily use mobile when shopping online, with 36.7 percent using an equal mix of mobile and desktop;
- 91 percent of consumers are interested in signing up for texts, but not all businesses offer it yet; and
- 55.9 percent of consumers are already signed up to receive text messages from businesses.
Draper James, a leading women's apparel, accessories and home brand, is using SMS to communicate and market to its customers, and to great effectiveness. The brand decided to test SMS for a couple of reasons. First, the channel is so personal in its nature. Customers that are willing to sign up to receive text messages from Draper James are showing the brand that they really want to hear from it. Second, SMS is an effective method for beating the congestion of the email inbox, especially around high-volume times of the year such as the Q4 holidays and other seasonal events and sales.
To help generate opted-in subscribers for its SMS program, Draper James swapped out its on-site pop-up creative to reflect sale creative during promotional periods to capitalize on organic and paid traffic during its highest volume days. This tactic has been integral to the brand's SMS subscriber acquisition strategy, particularly during the 2021 holiday season. In fact, the promotional creative converted site visitors to SMS subscribers via Attentive at rate nearly 4x stronger than evergreen creative in the previous six months.
As for the types of messages that Draper James is sending to its SMS subscribers, the brand is targeting "moments," whether that’s a new arrivals delivery, the launch of a brand partnership/collaboration, or the start of a sale. In addition, the brand is sending exclusive offers to its SMS subscribers. For example, during last year's Cyber Week, Draper James sent a text offering limited-edition, curated product kits at a steeper discount than its general sale. The message proved to be one of the highest revenue drivers of the busy week.
In an effort to optimize the performance of its SMS program, Draper James is taking a strategic approach to messaging cadence — i.e., who is receiving which messages and how many in a given time frame. For example, Draper James is segmenting new product arrivals into micro deliveries. The brand has found that its SMS subscribers like to jump on new arrivals as soon as they're notified via text message. This scarcity model has led Draper James to lean into a VIP strategy — based both on customer lifetime value and engagement — offering early access to sales and first looks at seasonal collections.
For Draper James, SMS is just one tool in its overall marketing strategy. The brand notes that 40 percent of its SMS subscribers are also subscribers to its email program. However, the two messaging channels are not always sharing the same content. Draper James want its SMS subscribers, which tend to be its most engaged and loyal customers, to feel like they’re getting a unique experience. It achieves that by giving them early access to sales and seasonal collections, among other benefits.