How T-Mobile Uses Exclusive Offers to Honor the Military

Posted on Jun 4, 2018 · 4 min read

Have you noticed that more and more leading brands are offering exclusive discounts to targeted groups, such as students, seniors or veterans?

This form of pull-based marketing is one way brands are responding to the tectonic shifts in customer perception, particularly in the wake of the Facebook and Cambridge Analytica scandal. Brands are questioning the value of interruptive, push-based marketing tactics and looking for new ways to engage, build trust, and foster alignment with customers that are less data-predatory.

Some leading brands are discovering that exclusivity marketing can be a powerful way to meet this challenge. Exclusive offers that verify customer eligibility generate significantly higher conversion rates and returns on ad spend, and foster longer-term brand loyalty within key customer groups.

Among those leading brands, T-Mobile is making a major statement. The company has not only embraced the value of exclusive offers, they have taken it one step further by actively recognizing and deeply valuing a key customer segment in multiple ways that build excitement and loyalty.

T-Mobile is using exclusive offers as part of a nationwide campaign to honor the military and build customer excitement and loyalty.

A multi-faceted program, targeted to verified military, veterans and families

T-Mobile has kicked-off it’s new T-Mobile ONE™ Military program, which offers 50% discounts on family lines for all military and veterans. In addition, the company has launched an extensive, multi-faceted military support initiative that demonstrates T-Mobile’s respect for – and commitment to – this key customer community. The initiative includes:

  • Offering half off family lines – the biggest military discount in wireless – and half off Samsung superphones.
  • Pledging to recruit and hire 10,000 veterans and military spouses in the next five years.
  • Providing funding for the non-profit FourBlock to expand its successful Career Readiness Program to 20 total cities and launch it online so all military and veterans can enroll from anywhere for free.
  • Investing more than half a billion dollars this year to expand LTE coverage and capacity and lay the foundation for 5G in communities around U.S. military bases.

T-Mobile has a history of valuing and rewarding its military audience. The company understands that service members make up a segment of 37 million consumers with $1 trillion in buying power, and has received numerous accolades from military organizations for its Military Friendly® track record of hiring veterans and offering benefits for active military reservists.

95% of military members are more likely to shop at a company that offers a military discount.

With this latest campaign, T-Mobile saw an opportunity to break through a noisy marketplace to both grab the attention of new, potentially very loyal customers, and express gratitude for their work by supporting individuals and families within that community. For T-Mobile, the military isn’t just a market segment, it’s a group of real people who deserve to be recognized for their contribution to our society.

Exclusive offers that are well-targeted and verified get results.

Such a large, multi-faceted initiative is a big investment for T-Mobile, but the company is confident it will pay off, both in increased revenue and customer loyalty.

The ROI of Exclusive Offers - Survey Infographic

The data bears this out. In general, brands that invest in verified exclusivity marketing campaigns experience significantly higher conversion rates (35% for leading brands implementing exclusivity marketing vs. an average of 2% to 4% for typical push marketing campaigns).

They also see a 2 to 3-fold increase in shopping trips and exponentially higher return on ad spend, with ROAS results of 18:1 for verified exclusive offers vs. 4:1 for other high-performing marketing campaigns.

There are very concrete and timely reasons why exclusive offers work so well. When retailers and service providers personalize offers based on occupation, life stage or affiliation – such as teachers, college students, retirees or military – they invite large customer segments to respond directly. These offers interest buyers  enough that they are willing to seek verification in order to garner discounts.

This “opt-in” model is a far more trusted and less intrusive form of marketing than the more traditional pull-based marketing approach that interrupts customers with unsolicited offers and relies on inferring customer intent based on questionably-gathered customer data.

When you put an exclusive offer into the marketplace, the right customers come to you.

Digital Verification: The key to success in exclusivity marketing

Leading brands like T-Mobile, Microsoft, Lowes and Nike are embracing this model, and they all have one thing in common: digital verification. Anyone can make an offer to a specific group, but without verifying the validity of the consumer’s affiliation, brands can experience discount abuse averaging between 30-40%.

Using an Digital Verification platform like SheerID enables brands like T-Mobile to reduce fraud while actively reaching out and engaging with a fiercely loyal and dedicated customer group.

You can learn how to create exclusive offers that honor the military and make them loyal customers by downloading our guide, “Best Practices for Connecting with the Military.”

Tony Coray by Tony Coray