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Irish SMS marketing firm ranks high
Wednesday, February 06 2002
by Andrew McLindon

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Irish wireless marketing agency Rtn2Sndr has been named as one of the top European SMS campaigners by research agency Forrester.

According to Forrester, Rtn2Sndr is among five SMS marketers whose one-off pull campaigns "display the strongest skills." The other four are Reach-U Solutions, Buongiorno, Wireless Information Network and Goyada.

One-off pull SMS campaigns resemble e-mail marketing and are used primarily to build brand awareness. They require the permission of the user and as such, said Forrester, avoid the privacy problems sometimes associated with marketing by SMS.

Donald Douglas, a director of Rtn2Sndr, said that SMS marketing is becoming increasingly popular among businesses, but is undervalued in Ireland at present. "It offers a way for marketers to deliver traditional marketing objectives, but in an interactive manner," he told ElectricNews.Net. "However, although I think there will be huge growth in this area, at the moment it's undervalued and under-priced in Ireland in comparison to the rest of Europe."

Forrester was similarly upbeat about the future of SMS marketing. According to a survey carried out by the research agency of 205 direct marketers, 21 one percent of respondents in that survey used SMS marketing at least occasionally and 12 percent have trialled it. And around five percent said they plan to use it regularly during 2003 and devote seven percent of their budgets to it.

"The 40 early-adopter marketers we interviewed gave SMS a thumbs-up because it gives them a new channel to reach increasingly elusive consumers anytime, anywhere," said Forrester analyst, Michelle de Lussanet. "Marketers agree that SMS is here to stay and cite its high speed, interactivity and reach as the medium's top advantages."

Forrester said that each type of SMS marketing carried a different pay-off with one-off push campaigns' CPM (cost per thousand) of EUR107 beating that of e-mail campaigns. The company also said one-time pull campaigns' 13 percent response rate undercut phone and mail alternatives. Moreover Forrester claimed that once pull campaigns are integrated with other media channels such as TV, radio and billboards there will be "booming" uptake.

However, while de Lussanet said that SMS marketing offers great economics with an average response rate of 11 percent at an average campaign cost of EUR24,000, she said that marketers may still be sceptical due to the loss of effectiveness with e-mail marketing.

In terms of one-off push campaigns, Forrester rated Buongiorno, 12snap, emunity, MindMatics, flytxt, and Brainstorm as the best in Europe.

Rtn2Sndr was founded in February, 2001, by Douglas and Mark Mulhern, both of whom are advertising graduates. The company's service allows advertisers to print a mobile number that customers can text with their name and address to obtain more information, such as a brochure, a reminder alert or a discount voucher. Customers include Esat Fusion, Fanta, Nescafe and the Dublin Institute of Technology.

Rtn2Sndr can be found at http://www. rtn2sndr.com.

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