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Cost Cutters offers mobile coupons to inspire customer loyalty

October 29, 2009

The Cost Cutters flier with the SMS call-to-action

The Cost Cutters flier with the SMS call-to-action

Cost Cutters ran a mobile coupon campaign in eight markets across the United States as part of a customer relationship management program to drive consumers into its budget hair salons.

Cost Cutters tapped mobile marketing company Qittle to let customers get discounts on haircuts and hair products to build a database of opted-in consumers and promote customer loyalty. When consumers texted in a keyword to a short code and opted-in to the campaign, they received a mobile coupon with a six-digit code that they can enter use at the point-of-sale.

“Cost Cutters wasn’t collecting a lot of information about its customers at the various store locations, so having a mobile campaign allowed them to start getting consumer info and building an opt-in database in-store,” said Casey McConnell, CEO of Qittle, Aspen, CO. “Everything is driven through going back in-store for redemption of the mobile coupon.

“It’s more about consumer convenience than branding, as a big component is getting you a mobile coupon at the time you need to get a haircut,” he said. “Having a coupon sent directly to consumers’ phone encourages them to come into a Cost Cutters store instead of a competitor.

“The redemption rates were pretty phenomenal.”

Cost Cutters is a national hair-care services chain that includes more than 850 salon locations across the U.S.

The ability to manage their databases per region is very important to Cost Cutters, so Qittle set up several campaigns for specific regions, each with its own keyword.

Cost Cutters distributed “Savings to your phone” fliers with the mobile call-to-action at its bricks-and-mortar locations within the campaign’s target regions.

The flier distributed at Colorado Springs locations of Cost Cutters read as follows:

“Let us text you a reminder to get your hair cut. You’ll get a coupon texted to you every time you need a trim as well as other special savings offers. Text COSTCUTTERSCS TO 32075.”

The keyword Qittle used for Quad City, IA, was COSTCUTTERSQC, Central Wisconsin was COSTCUTTERSCW, and Glenwood Springs, CO, was COSTCUTTERSGS.

Cost Cutters did not do any marketing support outside of its stores.

Each of the text messages sent to opted-in consumers contains a link to Cost Cutters’ new mobile Web site, which contains a store locator feature letting customers search for the closest Cost Cutters salon.

The rebate offers of the mobile coupons range between $2 and $5 off a hair cut or hair product, and 30 days after a particular consumer opted in, Cost Cutters sent a follow-up mobile coupon for a discount on a haircut.

Cost Cutters tested a similar mobile campaign with a competing vendor in four other markets.

“We got the national account and are looking to roll out nationally for Cost Cutters,” Mr. McConnell said. “One challenge was getting buy-in with every store, making sure the front line knows about the mobile call-to-action and that the franchise owners are motivating their staff.

“The salons that made the mobile campaign a priority saw fantastic opt-in and redemption rates, whereas other markets where stylists didn’t know about the campaign saw lower opt-ins because the front line didn’t talk it up,” he said.

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Dan Butcher is associate editor on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach him at

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One Response to “Cost Cutters offers mobile coupons to inspire customer loyalty”

  1. Mohamed Grable Says:

    Very interesting

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