Lifestyle fashion label Madhappy design products to promote optimism and improve mental health. When we heard they were investing in an SMS capability we were super excited to check it out.
The brand uses a text-based service for pre and post-purchase customer support, and to send out the occasional promo or product drop.
There are two methods of subscribing to Madhappy’s SMS channel via their website - both found in the homepage footer:
Click on ‘text us’ and you’ll be taken directly to the SMS app on your phone with a prefilled number. This is the most frictionless sign up process we’ve seen, and a really smart way of prompting engagement.
This sign-up method isn’t for everyone, however - it’s better suited to those who already have a specific question in mind and are comfortable using SMS to ask it.
The other way of opting-in to Madhappy's SMS channel is by hitting ‘contact us’ in the footer, which takes you to a landing page offering more contextual information:
The explanation here is pretty clear. The inclusion of office opening hours are particularly valuable for setting customer expectations around response times. With an extra (and somewhat unnecessary) click, you arrive at the point of opt-in itself:
Whilst the single box form fill and emphasis on ‘conversations’ are strong features, we take issue with the small print. Having explicitly drawn users to this interface through a link which says ‘text us for support’, you're then asked to ‘agree to receive recurring automated marketing messages’ in order to subscribe.
Whilst there is nothing wrong with sending out promo material per say, promising the user one thing then springing an extra surprise in the small print feels a little underhand. By not being upfront about their intentions here, Madhappy risk undermining trust in their brand.
Sure enough, our first SMS interaction with Madhappy was a bulk product drop. Again, whilst these are a legitimate and important part of any text-based campaign, this one could be improved.
The message copy offers little to encourage consumer interest, and fails to align with the brand’s distinctive values which promote positivity. The offer itself is depersonalised, and comes with limited visual appeal. The CTA is a generic link out to Madhappy’s online store, which is of no relevance to the individual consumer:
However, when Madhappy stuck to their initially stated purpose of offering customer support, their SMS channel was fantastic.
We asked them a number of pre-purchase questions and received replies almost immediately from a named person. The responses effectively answered the queries and were clearly sent by a customer service rep rather than a chat bot.
This kind of real-time, person-to-person customer experience is really tough to deliver effectively and Madhappy have nailed it.
Our only niggle here was that when we tried to buy, we were again sent another generic link to their website. Keeping purchase in-channel, or 1-click via a personalised link is a much stronger driver of conversion.
Be transparent at sign-up
Whatever you are planning to use your SMS channel for, be upfront with customers about it from the off. Any surprises after opt-in undermines trust.
Product drops are fine but make them relevant & appealing
Consumers don’t mind receiving sales material if it’s personally relevant to them. Draw on your customer profile data to segment your SMS marketing list to deliver this.
Conversational customer service is a game changer
Contacting brands with queries is often a really painful, time consuming process for consumers. Merchants that can provide immediate, personalised answers differentiate themselves massively.