Premium SMS successfully used for TV-Station Campaign

Revolution Magazine has an interesting case study about a mobile campaign from the British tv station Five done early this year (via Adverblog):
  1. Add value to viewers' experience
  2. Promote audience retention
  3. Generate revenue
  4. Develop an integrated SMS and email database which could be used for future campaigns
The campaign, named Movie Rewind, targeted an audience aged 16-35 with competitions linked to films such as Lethal Weapon, Dirty Harry, The Rock, City of Angels and Erin Brockovich. The films were run every Wednesday and Sunday for four weeks in February and March 2003. Two competitions a week offered viewers the chance to win one of nine Sony home-cinema systems. At the end of each movie, viewers were asked a question about what they'd seen. They could respond via SMS, a premium rate phone line or online. The SMS and phone line users were charged £1 per entry.

Wireless marketing firm Flytxt was responsible for SMS and email marketing, as well as developing Five's integrated database, while Wax New Media designed the html email. During the first weeks of the campaign, marketing texts were sent to Five's Movie Bonanza SMS database to drive users to watch the films and enter the competitions. A promotional email was sent to Five's existing movie database in week one and again in week two when new subscribers from the first week of the push were targeted too. An invitation to enter the competition went on screen at the end of each Movie Rewind film and via TV ad spots during the commercial breaks on Five.
  • Most competition entrants (51 per cent) responded via SMS, 32 per cent used the premium phone line and 17 per cent entered on the web site.
  • 85 per cent of users entered the competition once and 10 per cent entered twice.
  • In the first week of the promotion, the SMS database had 55,500 names and the email database had 9,181
  • By the second week, these had risen to 63,000 and 12,000 respectively.
  • Overall, Five's SMS database was boosted by 114 per cent and its email database by 18 per cent.

Simon Downing, head of marketing at Five:
"We had a number of databases. The idea was to get people from both the SMS and email databases to opt-in to this new database."

"Movie Rewind has been phenomenally successful. If you are going to launch a competition, SMS is an integral entry mechanism."
Carsten Boers, Director of Client Services at Flytxt:
"If you don't offer several channels, you are going to miss out on a core chunk of consumers. The important thing is not to be multi-channel for its own sake, but to offer users the most convenient way of reaching them and for them to reach you."
Considering the fact that probably about 100.000 participants have paid £1 per call / sms, this looks like a very cost efficient way of gaining confirmed contacts for a CRM - database.