South African Grocer Sees Sales Pick Up from Mobile Marketing

South African grocery chain Fruit & Veg City is seeing strong sales upticks from its decision to use text messages to communicate store announcements and sales promotions to shoppers' mobile phones.

The retailer is working with Redwood City, Calif.-based Clickatell, leading provider of global mobile messaging solutions, on the program.

"Our customers use their cell phones in every aspect of their lives, from chatting with friends to mobile banking," said Paul Savva, c.i.o. at Fruit & Veg City. "We want to make sure they never miss the opportunity to participate in a store promotion or save money during a sale. The most effective way to communicate with them is directly to their cell phones using SMS. We have already seen a direct increase in sales as a result of this new mobile messaging and marketing program."

Once customers opt into the program, Fruit & Veg City provides current 'on sale' information directly to their cell phones via SMS messages. The retailer also runs 'real-time' contests and promotions to give customers opportunities to win prizes such as free overseas trips.

Fruit & Veg City operates more than 100 stores.
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