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Village Inn mobile coupons see 113 percent redemption

August 18, 2009

villageinnDining franchise Village Inn used mobile coupons to lure consumers and build out the restaurant brand’s Mobile VIP Club.

Managed by mobile marketing service firm Ping Mobile, the Village Inn “Crepes” campaign offered users the chance to redeem one free entrée with their purchase of another entrée. Users were asked to text the word CREPES to short code 74642 to get the mobile coupon offer. 

“The strategy for Village Inn was to drive as many customers to the chain’s various locations in Phoenix,” said Shira Simmonds, president of Ping Mobile, Teaneck, NJ.

“We helped the Village Inn attach a call-to-action and an entire mobile aspect to the campaign to existing television spots promotion the food chain,” she said. “The television spots asked viewers to text in for coupons.” 

The campaign was advertised on Cox Cable TV and on the Village Inn Web site for about two months until it ended a few weeks ago.

Various respondents sent the offer to friends in a viral effort to spread the word about the campaign and the offer.

The main goal was to increase sales at the Village Inn restaurant.

Once users got the text with the coupon in it, a few sends later they received a text asking them if they were interested in joining the Village Inn VIP Club.

The secondary goal was to build out a Village Inn’s Exclusive Mobile VIP Club of participating
users who could be remarketed to with additional Village Inn promotions, discounts, offers and sweepstakes.

This part of the process is called the double opt-in. Upon opting in again, participants were added to a list of interested consumers and updated on special offers, future promotions and new dishes.

The total percentage of double opt-ins was 29.5 percent, Ms. Simmonds claimed, adding that 113 percent of the offers were redeemed.

Ping Mobile has experience conducting mobile campaigns for the restaurant industry.

For example, Cox Media teamed with direct marketer Omaha Steak for a promotion where participants were entered into a sweepstakes for the chance to win about $150 worth of meat for just $34.95 for their Fourth of July cook out (see story).

“The results of the campaign have a lot to say about the mobile channel as a whole,” Ms. Simmonds said. “I think what it says is that mobile does drive results because redemption rates are higher since people have to confirm their interest twice via the double opt-in.”

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

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