Kopari are a US beauty brand selling 100% natural, organic coconut oil based skincare products. When they saw 70% of website traffic and 53% of sales coming via smartphone, they realised they were too reliant on email, and launched an SMS marketing program in 2017.
For such an early adopter of SMS it is surprisingly difficult to find reference to the service on their website. Once you get there you arrive at this landing page:
As a form fill it’s fairly self explanatory, and there’s nothing massively wrong with it per say - but for a top of funnel marketing tactic it doesn’t particularly grab the attention and make you want to sign up. They would be better served by communicating the value of SMS to their customers at this stage - other brands such as Verb have done this particularly effectively.
That being said, Kopari don’t make the mistake of over promising either. We are told to expect text alerts about ‘new products’ and ‘exclusive offers’, and that is exactly what we get. The fact this is made clear from the outset mitigates against potential disappointment and annoyance amongst customers who might otherwise not have known what they were signing up for
This is a typical example of an SMS you get from Kopari. They send roughly one message a week, plugging product launches, promotions and sales. The intention is to get you to click on a link back to their DTC website and make a purchase from there.
The tone of the messages is simple enough, appropriate for the medium, and on brand, whilst the use of images gives the text window an engaging quality. The exclusive offers only available via SMS also clearly gives customers a monetary incentive to remain signed up to the service.
Where the approach falls down somewhat is that after 3-4 messages per month, it’s in danger of becoming overly ‘salesish’. Messages are mostly automated so the interaction still feels like one-many rather than a one-to-one conversation with the brand. The experience could also be much more personalised. From the outside looking in, it’s difficult to determine how/if Kopari segments their SMS audience, but it certainly feels like you are getting the same messages as everyone else.
It is also worth noting that this is very much a promotional tool, not a helpline; nor is it a means of making a purchase in-channel. Customer queries are still dealt with via email and if you do want to take advantage of one of the offers you’re linked back to the website.
But it’s working for them!
Kopari should nonetheless be commended for their willingness to embrace SMS very early - an approach which has undoubtedly paid off for them. Despite some limitations in their use of text messaging, the brand enjoys a 38% click through rate (the highest of all of their channels) via SMS. They also attribute 14% of overall revenue to customers tapping on a link sent by text before making a purchase.
Interestingly, Kopari have altered their SMS tactics recently in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. There is now more of an emphasis on building a community around their customer base rather than simply on making sales.
They’ve set up their own Spotify playlist, for example, which directs SMS recipients to songs with a summer beach theme. This both aligns with their image as an exotically inspired natural coconut brand, and offers customers a much needed sense of positivity in troubled times. The fact that this community focussed Spotify tactic saw a click through rate increase of 20% vs previous purely sales focused messaging perhaps points to the way forward for Kopari’s future SMS strategy.
Get your landing page right
The landing page to sign up to Kopari’s SMS service is super hard to find and not particularly inspiring once you get there. Bringing customers to your SMS channel in the first place is a crucial part of the funnel.
Make it more than just a sales channel
Kopari have recently benefited from diversifying their SMS channel to make it more community focused. Of course there is still room for promotional offers and sales information in your texting strategy, but they shouldn’t be the only means of offering your customers value.
SMS has huge potential!
Although we found some holes in Kopari’s use of SMS, it is clear they are still deriving huge benefit from the channel. They have reaped the rewards of being early adopters in the space, and are now well placed to further evolve their strategy going forward.
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