Last month I got a email from the guys at Juniper with some lovely mobile coupon statistics that got a few blogs excited about the progression of mobile coupons:

Personal Marketing Comes of Age with 3 million Britons Now Redeeming Coupons via Their Mobile Phone - According to New Juniper Survey

According to a new survey report from Juniper Research more than 3 million consumers have now used mobile coupons in the UK with UK brands benefiting from a 6 fold increase in response rates through mobile coupons.

The mobile coupons consumer survey, launched globally today, provides detailed insight into consumers’ current usage of mobile coupons. It also gauges the future prospects for new interactive mobile marketing techniques such as coupon services and smart posters.

Howard Wilcox, Senior Analyst at Juniper Research, commented: “The redemption rate for traditional paper coupons is typically 1% or less, but, based on our survey, mobile coupons offer 6 times these rates. This means that retailers and brands have the opportunity to exploit the mobile channel via personalised coupon offers direct to the ultimate personal device - the mobile phone.”

The survey showed that in excess of three quarters of those questioned were aware of mobile coupons and that once people receive coupons then there is a strong probability that they will also redeem them. The Orange Wednesdays campaign is a prime example of a successful mobile coupons programme.

I think that ‘personal marketing comes of age’ is a bit pre-mature, I hardly ever see mobile coupons in the UK apart from Orange Wednesdays. Do you?

So I emailed the extremely helpful guys at Juniper with the following question:

Would be great to know how many of those 3 million came from Orange Wednesday, I rarely see mobile vouchers so I'm expecting the results to be skewed by initiatives by Orange

and the reply:

Yes Orange Wednesdays accounts for a major share of the users but our survey also identified usage in supermarkets, restaurants, bookstores and other retail outlets. Awareness of campaigns for products such as both alcoholic and soft drinks as well as books was also evident from the survey.”

Although Orange have owned coupons in the UK for a long time (since 2004), I wouldn’t say we’re at a point where it’s common place. And how many of that 3 million does Orange Wednesdays account for? Well Mobile Marketing Magazine says that 300,000 people a week (!) use the 2-4-1 cinema vouchers, that’s 1.2 million a month and 14.4 million a  year. Which is actually more than Juniper are saying “More than 3 million consumers have now used mobile coupons in the UK”.

That means the bulk of mobile coupons are used by customers on one operator, not exactly prolific. Looking at Orange Wednesdays history, the first week it launched in 2004 only 12,000 coupons were sent out, it took a 5 years to get to 300,000 per week. Why more companies don’t look at these figures and get involved is absolutely beyond me. I wrote a post about turning printed coupons into mobile ones and I still believe this is the way forward for adoption.

Also the stat on “The redemption rate for traditional paper coupons is typically 1% or less”, we should start comparing printed coupons that get emailed around instead of the ones you cut out of newspapers/magazines, who even does that these days?