It's a no-brainer that SMS is the most effective way to reach most people in South Africa. Around 80% of us own or have access to a cellphone, and while only 15% of these are all-singing-all-dancing smartphones, every single one of them can send and receive the humble SMS.
What's more, SMS is also known to have excellent read rates and response times, when compared to other electronic channels such as email.
But SMS's greatest strength - its reach - is also its biggest challenge as a channel that mobile marketers can use to reach their audience. In today's world of targeted, personalised, one-to-one communications and conversations, the broad reach of SMS could appear to hearken back to the days of one-size-fits-all "spray and pray" marketing communications.
Not any more, with the launch of the Mobile Consumer Alliance (MCA), an active database of 11 million South African consumers that is not only cleverly segmented using advanced statistical modelling, it is also the only database in South Africa that is cross-referenced against All Media and Products Survey (AMPS) data. This gives marketers the ability to target, via SMS or MMS, the exact audience for their brand and specific messaging requirements, without wastage.
So, for instance, an alcohol brand wanting to target young urban males that live in urban areas outside of major centres can do just that. Or a cosmetics company launching a new product could start communicating with young women that it knows purchase a lot of make-up and beauty products every month. In addition, cross-selling becomes that much easier: no more wasting time sending information about a home loan offer to someone who rents their accommodation.
The MCA database has a robust foundation in the shape of The ETL Group's well-established database, which is currently the most frequently updated and "active" database in the country. It has been developed and maintained by ETL, experts in reliable and accurate database management, for almost 40 years.
Then, using an advanced analysis tool developed by Peter Langschmidt, CEO of Response Connection, the ETL database is overlayed with AMPS data. This includes living standards measure (LSM) information, media consumption, access to services, consumer durables purchased, consumer behaviour and a wealth of additional demographic that aids targeting.
Habari Media has snapped up the opportunity to add MCA to its portfolio of web properties and mobile advertising platforms and offer the service to brands wanting to effectively add SMS and MMS to their marketing mix. With MCA, Habari Media's customers can effectively segment and profile customers using AMPS data to accurately target specific customer groups for one-one conversations.
"This is the MCA's unique selling point and no other database provider can provide such accurate, one-to-one targeting. We can segment and profile consumers using AMPS data to accurately target specific consumer groups," says Wayne Bischoff, managing director of Habari Media.
In addition, "if you buy data that has financial or motor vehicle data you are most certainly buying illegal data and breaking multiple laws," warns Response Connection's Peter Langschmidt. "By partnering with Response Connection, MCA uses its statistical expertise to model any product or brand on AMPS. For instance, for Caltex our model delivered to 95% vehicle owners." About Habari Media
Habari Media, www.habarimedia.com
, is Africa's leading digital sales house offering internet and mobile advertisers access to Africa's largest portfolio of leading web and mobile advertising platforms. Habari Media provides these partners with local presence and market knowledge as well as providing advertisers who wish to reap the rewards of mobile and internet advertising with the best service, knowledge and support.