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Puerto Rico-based malls use SMS to drive store traffic for retailers

February 26, 2010

plaza-del-solDevelopers Diversified Realty/Centros Isla, the largest network of shopping centers in Puerto Rico, has launched Textea Isla, a mall-based mobile advertising network.

Thought up by Mobisix and powered by Flip Candy, Textea Isla will deliver text message discounts and offers, notifications of mall sales and event alerts to an exclusive list of opt-in members. Consumers can join the network online or via text message while shopping in-mall.

“Flip Candy was created by the team here at Mobisix,” said Michael Foschetti, managing director of Mobisix, Charlotte, NC. “We wanted Flip Candy to have a Hispanic sister brand, Textea Isla, because of our extensive experience within the Hispanic marketing world. 

“It was then a natural progression for Mobisix to partner with DDR/Centros Isla because they are the largest mall owner in Puerto Rico. 

The program requires 100 percent opt-in, and standard carrier messaging rates apply. Textea Isla is now live at 15 DDR/Centros Isla Shopping Centers across Puerto Rico.

The strategy for DDR/Centros Isla is to leverage mobile and help drive store traffic for its retailers.

Sending marketing offers via text fits any budget large or small—and DDR/Centros Isla retailers don’t need to build their own costly opt-in databases of mobile numbers to communicate with their customers.

They can send offers as frequently or infrequently as their budget allows.

To generate interest and incent consumers to join Textea Isla, DDR is offering a chance to win a $1,000 shopping spree.

There are two ways that a consumer can become a Textea Isla member.

A consumer can join Textea Isla by visiting and providing his or her mobile phone number and other preference data.

On-the-go consumers can opt-in while shopping at their local Centros Isla shopping center.

On-property signage prompts shoppers to text a center-specific keyword to Textea Isla’s short code, 61253.

For example, shoppers at Plaza del Sol are encouraged to text SOL to 61253 to enter for a chance to win $1,000 and simultaneously opt-in to the Textea Isla network.

“Traditional mall and retailer advertising efforts for exclusive promotions, mall event announcements, or sales alerts is usually costly and sometimes ineffective,” Mr. Foschetti said. “With Textea Isla, retailers can create text campaigns that are tailored to their individual budgets, offer customized content, and are sent right to their target audience.

“Mostly alerts about new products and discounts will be deployed,” he said. “Whatever the consumer responds to and will drive traffic into the stores.

“Some of our customers are using the platform to send messages that support their loyalty programs, but most are sending discounts and coupon offers in effort to drive more immediate sales and store traffic.”

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Giselle Tsirulnik is senior editor at Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer. Reach her at

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One Response to “Puerto Rico-based malls use SMS to drive store traffic for retailers”

  1. Robert Sanchez Says:

    Excellent article on this system in Puerto Rico. It looks like it is really taking off. With smartphones, larger data packages and unlimited text plans taking over the market, mobile message-based marketing is starting to really take off. It can be one of the most cost effective and high response methods of marketing. At Globaltel Media, we’ve incorporated real-time response rate tracking, to better tailor each company’s individual solution for improved results in targeted SMS campaigns. As long as companies adhere to MMA regulations, and avoid a consumer backlash, we should continue to see mobile marketing initiatives grow in America.

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