Boosting Your Mobile Marketing Reputation in a Flash

Flash Sales & SMS: a perfect partnershipRemember the good old days when a company would decide to have a sale, give its customers advance notice, hold the sale over the course of a week or so, and enjoy the fruits of a sale well held? Well the internet and convenience of E-mail have shortened attention spans and made quick blink-and-you’ll-miss-it events all the rage.

Hence the flash sale.

Flash sales are mini-sales that last no longer than a day—and sometimes as briefly as an hour—and usually offer much more dramatic discounts than conventional sales. Most flash sales occur on internet stores, but brick and mortar establishment have been known to hold some (most notably on Black Friday). Whatever your business does, chances are there is an opportunity to hold a flash sale.

One of the more defining characteristics of a flash sale is that customers are usually only informed via E-mail or social media. They only have a couple of hours’ notice to reach the store and only a few more to act on the sale. It’s not unusual for dedicated, regular customers to miss out on a store’s flash sale. You might have even missed out on a couple of flash sales yourself without ever knowing.

This might seem counterproductive, but what businesses lose in a limited activity window they make up in buzz and mobile marketing cred. That’s why flash sales are the perfect tool for SMS marketing.

The basics of how to hold and promote a flash sale are pretty self-evident: inform your opted-in SMS group of the sale, allow yourself a small lag of a couple of hours, and hold the sale. What will make your sale special is the “extra mile” you put into marketing.

Exclusivity is the key. Limit your advertisement of the sale to those in your SMS group. No fliers, no TV or radio ads, no “tips” to favored customers. Information like this should be one of the exclusive perks that attract people to your SMS list in the first place. And while it’s polite business to extend discounts to whoever shows up during your sale—whether they knew of it or not—you can also offer a coupon code your SMS group to make sure only they can redeem the savings.

There’s also something about flash sales that makes customers eager to spread the word to friends. Make sure you reward your SMS group for bringing a friend along to your sale. If you own a Facebook account and reward customers for sharing the news, even better. With a little bit of online social butterflying, you can simulate the buzz of traditional weeklong sales into a compact 8 to 12-hour package.

It’s easy to look at sales as a predictable crutch in marketing. Indeed, there are countless marketing techniques that will bring more lasting results than merely slashing price tags. But just about every business will have to hold a sale sooner or later. When the time comes for your business, don’t run away from the here-and-now fervor of the internet age. Jump into the fray and ready yourself for a wild day of business. It’s one of the best ways to make sure your SMS group keeps their cell phones handy.


Interested in learning more about using SMS Marketing for flash sales/deal of the day promotions? Contact us at 800-696-1393 or email

Eric Duncan

Eric Duncan writes about Marketing for TextMarks--The industry leading SMS Marking & Communications platform.

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