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Ann Inc.’s Loft aims to beef up email efforts via holiday promotion

December 17, 2013

Loft's mobile sweepstakes

Ann Inc.’s Loft is building up its email efforts through a mobile advertising campaign that gives consumers a chance to win prizes in exchange for opting in to email newsletters.

Loft’s “Have Your Moment” campaign requires that consumers submit their email address to play a quick game. Since the retailer does not have a mobile site, these kinds of promotions give Loft a way to interact with tablet and smartphone shoppers.

“Subscriber acquisition has long been a ‘Top five’ priority for email marketers,” said Jordan Cohen, vice president of marketing at Movable Ink, New York.

“It makes sense for marketers to try a variety of tactics, and to make opting in easy across all the channels they’re in, which increasingly means mobile,” he said.

Mr. Cohen is not affiliated with Loft. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

Loft declined to comment for this article.

Building up emails
Loft is running a mobile advertising campaign within the NBC News iPhone application to promote the sweepstakes.

When consumers click on the ads, a landing page pulls up and immediately prompts consumers to enter their email address for a chance to participate in the campaign.

Loft’s mobile ad

Loft is giving away 350 daily prizes including gift cards or hotel stays and one grand prize — a five-day trip to the Bahamas.

After consumers type in their email address, they must fill out a registration form that includes their name, address and phone number before they can play the game.

From there, a landing page scrolls through keywords such as getaway, fashion and makeover that are all tied to prizes.

Consumers must swipe their finger across the screen to spin the keywords and hopefully land on a prize.

The sweepstake’s content can be shared via Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, and there is also a call-to-action for consumers to click-through to shop once an entry is made.

Despite the opportunity for Loft to drive revenue through a commerce click-through, the retailer does not have a mobile site, and consumers are forced to pinch and zoom to find content on the site.

The virtual game

The Loft sweepstakes ends on Dec. 28, and users can enter once a day.

Each time that a consumer plays, they are automatically entered to win the Bahamas grand prize.

Past efforts
Loft is fairly new to mobile. Earlier this year, the brand made its first big push into mobile by mobilizing its loyalty program. A mobile-optimized site lets members manage their account and pay bills (see story).

In this case, Loft is able to build up its email database after the promotion ends to build a deeper relationship with shoppers into 2014.

Additionally, mobile has eclipsed desktop as the primary way that consumers are reading their email.

Therefore, a mobile site is the next logical step for Loft to take so that consumers are linked to optimized content after opting in to email newsletters from this promotion.

“According to Movable Ink’s ‘U.S. Consumer Device Report, Q3 2013’ [report], 61 percent of big brand marketing emails were opened on mobile devices,” Mr. Cohen said.

“So having an effective mobile email marketing strategy has been critical,” he said. “Unfortunately, a surprising amount of marketers are behind the curve when it comes to mobile email marketing.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York 

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