Mobile marketing case study: How Tusker celebrated national sporting achievements and increased sales to a five year high

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Brandtone partnered with beer brand Tusker to create the first mobile campaign of its kind to engage Kenyan consumers through mobile to help drive sales, increase brand loyalty and build an opt-in database of consumers who could be communicated with into the future.


Key take outs

• Tusker bought Kenyan’s together to celebrate national sporting achievements with m-pesa credit for a Tusker beer

• Mobile marketing campaign which saw 2.3million Kenyans to join the Team Kenya campaign

• Tusker sales increased to a 5 year high

The challenge

Grow sales, increase brand loyalty, and build a permissioned database

Tusker is an iconic Kenyan beer brand and is best known as the beer Kenyan’s like to drink after work. Recently, however, Tusker has somewhat lost its public perception of being truly Kenyan so the ‘Team Kenya’ campaign was created to reinforce the brand as being synonymous with Kenyan pride.

As well as seeing a short-term sales increase, Tusker sought to build lasting relationships with their loyal consumers based on trust. By building a database of permissioned buyers they would be able to gain insights into purchasing behavior, location and competitors.

Tusker targets all alcohol drinkers and in Kenya it is common for beer consumers to buy one or more brands. A typical target persona for Tusker is a 28 year old urban male who is addicted to his phone, which meant mobile, was the obvious channel of choice.

It was imperative that ‘Team Kenya’ have a simple entry mechanic and that the rewards on offer were relevant and valuable. The campaign would have above the line support in terms of billboards, TV and radio so it was important that Tusker was able to take advantage of the strong media presence. The campaign would also have to tie in to key sporting events in the Kenyan calendar, namely the New York Marathon, the Dubai Rugby 7’s and the IAAF athletics meeting in Beijing.

The solution

Get consumers to register, profile consumers and re-engage to build brand loyalty
Brandtone worked with the Tusker brand team to develop a campaign solution that could be carried out entirely on mobile. A simple registration process would be followed by a short profiling session where the consumer would answer some basic questions about themselves.

They would then give permission for further communication with the incentive of airtime rewards or M-pesa credit which would be the equivalent of a bottle of beer. Once permission to re-engage was received, Tusker could send targeted communication to consumer segments which would be relevant and engaging and offer rewards that were valuable to those receiving them.

The execution

Brandtone’s challenge was to maximize consumer engagement via mobile in an innovative way while returning a significant return on investment. To deliver this, Brandtone developed a mobile marketing solution which was available on every consumer’s mobile using USSD. USSD was chosen due to its familiarity and accessibility to the target consumer (99% had used USSD in the previous month to send top-up airtime to their phone) and this was harnessed to create a new brand experience.

The Team Kenya forum was created to celebrate Kenyan sporting achievements and to rally the nation behind Kenyan athletes and in the first phase of the campaign, advertisements appeared nationwide on billboards, TV and radio which asked consumers to join a movement and be part of ‘Team Kenya’. To register, participants had to send a USSD to a short number where they could be in with the chance to win prizes. During each profiling session Tusker asked age, location or purchasing behaviour questions as well as for permission to re-engage, which allowed them to build a profiled database of Tusker consumers for future communication.
The second part of the campaign involved communication via direct SMS. These targeted messages were sent out to coincide with key moments in the Kenyan sporting calendar, for example during the IAAF athletics meeting in Beijing, during key Kenya 7’s Rugby matches and during the New York City Marathon. During these events consumers were asked to raise a Tusker to the Kenyan Team for their sporting efforts. Consumers were also randomly selected for cash or airtime prizes to help celebrate these important Kenyan moments, another way for Tusker to build a connection with Kenyan sport.

Analysis and optimisation

As part of the campaign solution, Brandtone constantly monitored the data received to ensure maximum participation and engagement. Learnings about consumer habits, location and favourite sports meant that messages could be optimised and tailored to specific segments and were therefore more personal. As a result of this, they helped targets to be reached well ahead of target in terms of entries and permissioned profiles.

The results

• 2.3 million entries
• 1.6 million permissioned profiles
• 97% permissioned rate

This Mobile Trade Program has been a resounding success with 2.3 million entries, resulting in a database of over 1.6 million.

Permission rates of 97% showed the trust that consumers had in the campaign and their willingness to be contacted further down the line. Word of mouth was important here as two-thirds of participants received some sort of reward within the opening month. These rewards added value and credibility to the campaign and were imperative to its success.

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