Consumers are hungrier than ever for great deals from brands they love, but the app economy may be losing steam as text messaging reigns supreme for brand-consumer conversations, according to new research from mobile marketing firm Vibes.

The firm’s new U.S. Mobile Consumer Report, now in its fourth year, shows that deals continue to be a driving factor for mobile consumer loyalty: 85 percent of consumers say they are more likely to shop at a store with a loyalty program in place, than one without. However, these same consumers are savvy—they strongly prefer to hear about offers, loyalty point rewards, and other deals through direct text messaging from brands they admire and trust. In fact, 53 percent say they would choose a brand with a mobile messaging platform over one without.

Want to reach consumers? Text them, says new mobile report

And, while mobile wallet adoption is still emerging, 28 percent would want to get offers right to their mobile wallets from brands they trust.

“Brand marketers often feel that they have to choose between mobile messaging programs or app development, but our Mobile Consumer Reportindicates that it’s not an either-or decision,” said Sophie Vu, chief marketing officer at Vibes, in a news release. “We conduct this survey annually to give marketers a gauge for evaluating the best ways to engage with consumers through mobile. As we look to the busy pre-holiday season and holiday 2019, brands are under pressure to understand the evolving role that text messaging and mobile wallets play in their customers’ shopping habits.”

Want to reach consumers? Text them, says new mobile report

Key takeaways from the report include:

Deals are king, but must be sufficiently generous

All else being equal, 85 percent of consumers are more likely to choose a store with a reward program over a store without one. One-quarter of consumers that have opted in to mobile messaging have unsubscribed or considered doing so because they are being messaged about deals they don’t consider good enough.

Brand mobile apps are a revolving door

While consumers add 2.6 new brand apps to their phone every year, on average, 1.5 are deleted. The only constant on consumers’ smartphones is their native messaging platform and in fact, more than half (53 percent) of all consumers would choose a brand with a mobile messaging platform over one without.

Believe it or not, the mobile wallet on your phone is in fact, a completely functioning wallet

With a whopping 75 percent of consumers stating they’ve used their mobile wallet in the past year and 22 percent motivated to try the mobile wallet as a way to organize coupons, offers, and loyalty cards, we’re seeing a shift in consumers using it beyond just a payment solution.

“Although email marketing casts a wide net, open and engagement rates are on the decline –in the single digits. In contrast, mobile apps reach fewer people but tend to be the most loyal users. Right in between these two channels are mobile messaging and the mobile wallet, the sweet spot of modern mobile marketing,” said Vu.

Want to reach consumers? Text them, says new mobile report

“When consumers use mobile wallets for payments, loyalty cards, ticket delivery, and coupon redemption, they realize that these wallets let them connect directly with brands they love without having to download an app,” she added. “We’re seeing conversion rates of 35-50 percent for brands savvy enough to capture consumers’ attention through this platform. By combining the power of reach with mobile messaging and the strength of engagement through personalized content delivery in the mobile wallet, trusted brands can break through the clutter and be relevant.”

Download the full report here.

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Richard Carufel

Richard Carufel

Richard Carufel is editor of Bulldog Reporter and the Daily ’Dog, one of the web’s leading sources of PR and marketing communications news and opinions. He has been reporting on the PR and communications industry for over 12 years, and has interviewed hundreds of journalists and PR industry leaders.

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