mobileStorm Case Study
Casino Takes Player Rewards Mobile
Riverwalk Hotel & Casino is a unique property with a highly localized customer-base that attracts the 45+gamer. With a small but loyal following, Riverwalk maintains a highly engaging marketing presence with its customers through a variety of traditional channels; with email open rates as high as 30% and nearly nonexistent complaint rates.
With an already loyal marketing database, Riverwalk had the aim of further integrating its existing marketing initiatives – including direct, Web, on-property and email – with new mobile channels such as SMS. Because the property had relatively little experience with text-based promotions, it wanted to partner with a solution provider that not only facilitated integrated marketing with an emphasis on SMS, but also had astrong focus on customer service to ensure they could be provided guidance, education and true person-to-person interaction to reduce the learning curve and drive results with a solid ROI.
Utilizing a true hands-on approach, mobileStorm began supporting Riverwalk’s goals by conducting an initial discovery phase. This included researching Riverwalk’s market and its customers, mapping those to the types of promotions that were most likely to drive response, as well as support other advertising initiatives and assets on the property.
Once initial research and planning was complete, mobileStorm worked with Riverwalk to create a new SMS program known as the Riverwalk “Happy Text Team.” The top-level objectives with the new program included:
- Create a larger SMS database by enticing Riverwalk players to opt-in to the newly created “Happy Text Team” program.
- Create a high redemption rate.
- Increase facility traction by having players return more frequently.
To build interest in the newly created SMS program and to prepare players for how it would work, Riverwalk and mobileStorm began with an email campaign that introduced the program. The next step was to devise Riverwalk’s SMS launch strategy to ensure a solid foundation was in place, which began with a list of 35,000 total players. The database was scrubbed using mobileStorm’s carrier query service, and the process identified 13,250 mobile numbers with carrier information.
10,249 SMS messages were sent to the SMS list and 5,261 were sent to the email list. To maintain industry best practices, a double opt-in message was sent asking the participant for further permission to receive messages once the initial request was received. The double opt-in message players received included an offer for two free buffets as a “thank you for joining Riverwalk Happy Text Team.” In addition, the message flow was magnified by the player’s ability to text the keyword “Happy” to 99158.
Following the initial SMS offer, a second offer was sent to opted-in subscribers encouraging them to enter a “$500 GoPlay Drawing,” which required a valid Riverwalk “Riverbank Rewards Club” card. The following action asked players to reply with their first and last name, as well as their account number to enter. This second promotion enticed users to become a member of the Riverbank Rewards Club, as well as built excitement if the player happened to be on the property when they received the text message.
The initial SMS launch program resulted in 6,957 messages being sent successfully, of which Riverwalk gained 1,617 opt-ins via its uploaded players list and 1,504 via text-in for a total of 3,121 SMS subscribers over roughly two weeks. As an unexpected but welcomed outcome, the initial launch campaign went “viral,” as those that knew about the promotion were telling others to opt-in. This means that the engagement and message relevance with the original subscriber base was so strong that they told others about the program and enticed them to participate as well. Facility traffic spiked to the point that the food and beverage department at Riverwalk was forced to ask marketing to shut down the campaign because too many people were redeeming the free offer at the buffet.
By leveraging mobileStorm’s years of experience and dedicated support, Riverwalk was able to cultivate a loyal mobile database with virtually no mobile experience and generate results that became extremely profitable and expandable into the future.