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Walmart propels Easter sales via interactive mobile campaign

The big box retailer’s mobile ad campaign is running within the New York Post iPhone application. Walmart is encouraging click-throughs with an Easter-themed mobile game.

“A themed mobile ad can be a traffic and sales driver for holidays if there is a compelling offer attached to the ad,” said Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis, Atlanta.

“Consumers will be less likely to engage with a mobile ad if there isn’t a specific action that draws them in,” she said.

“Once an ad is clicked, retention is key. Make the click-through worth the consumers’ time. If they aren’t disappointed the first time, they will be more inclined to click a second time on a different ad with that brand.”

Ms. Troutman is not associated with Walmart. She commented based on her expertise on the subject.

Walmart did not respond to press inquiries. 

Hop on mobile
The banner ads feature Walmart’s logo and reads, “Play Easter Egg Game.”

When consumers tap on the ad, it expands to an optimized page that lets them play an Easter-themed mobile game.

The landing page also includes a store locator feature that lets consumers find the nearest Walmart store.

To play, consumers tap as many eggs as possible while avoiding Easter bunnies as they pop out of the ground. When users tap on an egg, it is decorated with a logo from one of five big candy brands that Walmart sells.

The five brands are Mars, Cadbury, Reese’s, Starburst and SweetTarts.

After consumers finish playing the game, a call-to-action prompts users to find Easter ideas at Walmart.

When users click-through, they are directed to a page where they can swipe through three different types of candy – sugar shockers, classic candies and peanut butter candies.

Consumers can tap on each featured candy to be automatically redirected to Walmart’s Easter section on its Web site.

Even though the follow-through helps the company drive online traffic, the click-through misses the mark by linking to Walmart’s Web site, instead of a mobile-optimized page.

Seasonal advertising
Walmart has been ramping up its mobile presence with in-store initiatives to enhance the shopping experience. Augmented reality, location-based technology and QR codes are all used by the retail giant.

Walmart also regularly turns to mobile advertising for campaign or season-specific promotions.

For instance, last year the retailer ran a mobile ad campaign to help the retailer sell office supply products (see story).

Additionally, Walmart used rich media on an initiative to drive sales of fishing gear products last year (see story).

“With mobile games as a compelling click-through, understanding the demographic and strategically placing the ad is critical,” Ms. Troutman said.

“For example, an Easter game geared toward kids and promoted on kids’ sites could be a big win to get the kids to direct the parents to shop, especially if there is a prize won that requires a store visit,” she said.

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