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Trulia incentivizes SMS opt-ins to propel app downloads

Online real estate site Trulia is dialing up its mobile efforts for the second phase of a $45 million campaign that drives application downloads with a sweepstakes.

Trulia has launched a mobile, Web and social microsite at to give home lookers the chance to win $50,000 off of their next home. Trulia worked with HelloWorld on the campaign.

?This is the first SMS campaign where Trulia has partnered with HelloWorld,? said Sara Kowal, vice president of product innovation at HelloWorld, Pleasant Ridge, MI.

?It's an important element now as it's a gateway to accessing the app, which is integral to their strategy of providing information on demand on the go,? she said.

Building up mobile awareness
The Trulia sweepstakes is the second phase in a marketing campaign that was launched in March that centers around app downloads (see story). 

The campaign?s assets are housed within the microsite. 

The microsite and Facebook app prompts consumers to enter their first and last name as well as an email address to be entered into the sweepstakes. 

Trulia is incentivizing consumers to sign up for an extra ten entries by typing in their mobile phone number.

In addition to getting extra chances to win the sweepstakes, consumers who enter their email address to win will receive a message including a link to download Trulia?s app.

While marketers have aggressively pushed their apps via social media and mobile advertising the past few years, not many are utilizing SMS as much as in the past. 

In Trulia?s case, the idea is that the opt-in and sweepstakes entry is a more qualified lead and therefore those consumers are more willing to download a mobile app.

Social sharing
Once a consumer enters the sweepstakes, they can share the sweepstakes via Facebook, Twitter or email. A big button at the bottom of the page prompts consumers to start searching for a home by clicking through to Trulia?s Web site.

To promote the new sweepstakes, Trulia is launching the second of three TV ads.

The new TV spot is part of a series of three videos that follows couples through the often-stressful process of buying a home.

The 30-second video features a couple standing in the bathroom at an open house, who are deciding if they want to make an offer on a house. 

The couple looks up additional information about the home via the Trulia app.

A call-to-action at the end of the ad prompts consumers to visit the microsite for a chance to win the money.

As more house hunters turn to their own mobile phones and tablets as a research tool, Trulia?s campaign underscores the need for the marketers within the real estate sector to not only develop content for smartphones and tablets, but for all digital platforms.

?First, [Trulia?s] customers are on the go and often move between various engagement channels like Facebook, mobile apps and Web sites,? Ms. Kowal said.

?Second, house hunting is a very social process ? one that is shared with friends, family, neighbors and even many others,? she said. ?Including the program on multiple channels and allowing customers to share via social, Trulia aligns with the product they offer.?

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