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Target builds mobile momentum via in-store promotions, video

Target has launched two new marketing initiatives to drive downloads of its mobile application that also educate consumers about the benefits of mobile shopping.

The big-box retailer is using both in-store signage and an online video to drive downloads of its mobile app. The goal behind Target using these initiatives is to connect with in-store shoppers who are engaged with the digital and in-store shopping experience.

“We’re promoting Target’s app with in-store signage so that more guests will learn about the many features and offerings available – from mobile coupons to lists, store maps and item availability information,” said Eddie Baeb, spokesman at Target, Minneapolis.

“We also know that guests who use our app are highly engaged Target guests,” he said.

Mobile target
Target rolled out in-store signage last weekend to promote its iPhone and Android app. The calls-to-action are placed throughout the store, including in checkout lanes and on aisle end caps.

The first set of store signage features a photo of a smartphone and encourages consumers who are looking for help in-store to download the app.

The second set of creative prompts consumers to text the keyword APP to 827438 to download Target’s app. After consumers text in the keyword, they are sent a message with a link that drops straight into the app store of the appropriate operating system.

Linking to Target’s SMS program is also a smart way for the big-box retailer to build up its mobile database.

In addition to the in-store signage, Target has also launched an online video that explains how its app works.

The video is accessible via and explains the benefits of Target’s app to consumers.

The video tells a story of a woman who is frustrated that she cannot find a toy in a Target store for her nephew’s birthday. Once a friend tells the woman about Target’s mobile app, the woman is able to either shop for the product on the spot or find a store with the specific items that she is looking for.

Additionally, the video walks consumers through how Target’s iPhone app can be used to create shopping lists and download mobile coupons.

The look books and product reviews within Target’s app are also highlighted in the video.

Target is smart to roll out in-store promotions of its mobile app to not only drive downloads, but also help consumers who are in a pinch in-store and are looking for quick help.

Target’s online video push for mobile

Mobile education
Target has been educating consumers on how to shop from their mobile devices for years.

Most recently, Target ran a mobile advertising campaign within The Weather Channel’s iPhone app that used SMS to promote its mobile coupons.

The creative in the ad campaign encouraged consumers to text in the keyword “UPUP” to 827438 to receive mobile coupons and opt-in to the retailer’s SMS program (see story).

Additionally, Target used in-store QR codes during the holidays last year to let consumers discretely shop 20 of the season’s most popular toys (see story).

“Target knows that when a customer is inside its physical location they have already agreed to receive messages from Target,” said Alex Kutsishin, director of business development at FiddleFly, Columbia, MD.

Mr. Kutsishin is not affiliated with Target. He spoke based on his expertise of the subject.

“Meaning, if I visit a Target location I have psychologically prepared myself to see Target-related messages,” he said. “If Target wants me to download their app, then Target would be inclined to share with me specific benefits of this app throughout my shopping experience.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York