Inside Story: Sweet Leaf makes sweet music with mobile

In the ongoing quest to integrate marketing communications, linking mobile phones and social media is the latest frontier.

One example is Sweet Leaf Tea. Music festival sponsorships are a big part of the company’s marketing strategy. To make the most of these, Sweet Leaf Tea ran a text promotion this summer and followed them up with additional text messages driving recipients to its blog and Facebook page to see pictures of the winners.

“When we sent out a text message after Lollapalooza announcing the winners of the promotion, we saw a major uptick in the amount of traffic on our blog that day and an increase in the number of fans who signed up for our e-newsletter,” said Charla Adams, communications manager at Sweet Leaf Tea.

The company is currently looking at how all the pieces of mobile and social media work together in ways that will help it build relationships with customers, Adams continued. “We’re still playing around with it, seeing the level of interaction that our fan base wants from us,” she said.

Sweet Leaf Tea’s “ability to tie texting and social together from a concept perspective is unique,” said Carrie Chitsey, CEO of Txt4CRM. “The idea is to make texting part of a whole CRM strategy and not have it siloed.”

As more companies eye mobile strategically, they will begin to look beyond the one-off campaigns, Chitsey continued. “The way texting campaigns are very effective is cross channel.”

Sweet Leaf Tea has discovered that even digitally savvy consumers sometimes prefer one method of contact over another. Since not all of the brand’s fans on Facebook are on Twitter, the brand has set up a few of its corporate Twitter accounts to automatically show up on Facebook. “It gives those people who are on Facebook a constant stream of new promotions and events they can participate in,” said Adams.

“We’re trying to find the activities that will bring other consumers who are standing by and listening and turn them into active participants,” said Adams. “That just comes with experimentation.”

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