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Banana Republic doles out mobile coupons to incentivize in-store sales

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March 21, 2013

Gap Inc.’s Banana Republic is pulling double duty with a new mobile advertising campaign that entices users to shop either in-store or through their mobile devices.

Banana Republic is driving click-throughs on its ad with a 10 percent off coupon that can be redeemed in-store. The ads are running within the Accuweather iPhone application.

“Coupons have been used for ages to grab the attention of customers and their business,” said Cezar Kolodziej, CEO/president of Iris Mobile, Chicago.

“However, customers that are already engaged with the brand don’t pay much attention whether they get a coupon or not in order to come back and make another purchase,” he said. “Measuring redemption rates of a coupon campaign can really prove the point and identify customer trends that can help to optimize mobile initiatives in the future.”

Mr. Kolodziej is not affiliated with Banana Republic. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

Banana Republic did not meet press deadline.

Driving in-store traffic
The banner ads encourage users to tap to receive an 10 percent off of their Banana Republic purchase. The corner of the banner pulls down to show users how many Banana Republic stores are nearby to them.

A full-page ad pulls up when consumers click on the ad that reads, “BR Offer.”

The ad is set up to include three tabs that run along the bottom of the page. The buttons direct users to the coupon, a nearby store or to Banana Republic’s mobile site.

Via the coupon consumers can save 10 percent off of an in-store offer.

The offer contains a bar code that can be scanned at the point-of-sale

Additionally, consumers can save the coupon to their device’s camera roll or email it to themselves. The email contains a link to a mobile microsite.

The location tab lists Banana Republic locations by distance and includes a map that pinpoints a user’s current location to the nearest store.

Furthermore, Banana Republic’s mobile site is pulled in to let consumers browse products and check-out directly from the ad unit.

Buttons at the top of the page link to Banana Republic’s Facebook and Twitter account. Users can then “Like” or follow the brand’s accounts to see what others are saying about the retailer.

The more the merrier?
Banana Republic’s campaign takes an all-encompassing approach to mobile advertising.

By loading the ad with both location-based and mobile commerce components, Banana Republic is able to appeal to a wide group of mobile users.

Additionally, offering an incentive in the creative – in this case a coupon – gives users a clear value for interacting with a banner ad.

However, some experts believe that the trick to a successful mobile advertising campaign is to keep it simple.

“Keeping it simple is a key rule we always recommend to our customers,” Mr. Kolodziej said.

“Based on our experience in this space, having too many call-to-actions within a single ad disturbs customers and is challenging to measure results, unless quantitative results are not one of the main objectives of the campaign,” he said.

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

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