Apothékary Achieves 75% Click-Through Rate with Conversational SMS
Meet Apothékary, the world’s first plant-based farmacy getting to the root cause of our health issues, not just treating the symptom. This health & wellness brand was started by wall-street refugee and lifelong wellness entrepreneur, Shizu Okusa in 2019 and has gathered a loyal following in the herbal wellness space and beyond.
Deciding to Take the SMS Plunge
By the time the marketing team at plant-based health and wellness brand Apothékary adopted SMS in fall 2021, it had been on their radar for quite some time. While they had seen success with email marketing and paid advertising, they wanted to be proactive with diversifying their channels. “SMS felt like the next right thing to do,” said Katie Magnus, Senior Marketing Manager at Apothékary.
While she was nervous initially about the added time commitment this new channel would require, Katie was pleasantly surprised by how easy it was to integrate SMS into Apothékary’s existing marketing programs. “I kept thinking, ‘I don’t know if I can manage another channel,’” she said. “I was envisioning SMS taking the same amount of time as email.”
In reality, Katie dedicated a few hours a week to SMS when she was first learning the Postscript platform. These days, she spends an hour or two per week building campaigns. “If you can simply carve out an hour a day for just a couple days out of the week, you can have a whole week or two of plans set to jet depending on what you’re sending,” she said.
On the automation side, she leaned heavily on Postscript’s out-of-the-box templates to get things up and running. Once she started seeing performance data, she optimized accordingly. On that note, one of Katie’s biggest pieces of advice to SMS newcomers is that their messaging doesn’t have to be perfect from the get-go. “Don’t worry about perfecting it,” she said. “Just get it up and running, and then you can go back and optimize as time goes on. We’ve had a lot of automations that are working their magic for us in the background until we optimize.”
Greater ROI than Email in Less Time
It didn’t take long for Apothékary to reap the rewards of their investment in SMS. “It’s hard to believe what an incredible ROI SMS has shown for us in comparison to email for the time trade-off,” Katie said. “I spend a fraction of the time creating our SMS strategy for a definitely comparable ROI.”
In fact, one of Apothékary’s highest-performing automations—their add-to-cart abandonment flow—averages $8.35 in earnings per message (EPM) for an ROI of 278X. “I think it would be worth it for people to get SMS exclusively for abandonment purposes,” she said. “You catch people who you don’t catch with email abandonment. If you constantly have that running in the background and you don’t have time to optimize anything else initially, that alone will increase your revenue. At least, it did for us!”
So, why is SMS so effective for abandonment messages, specifically? Katie credits the familiar, conversational vibe brands can achieve through text. “I think there’s something a little different with abandonment on SMS, where it’s just kind of like your best friend texting you a reminder.”
It’s hard to believe what an incredible ROI SMS has shown for us in comparison to email for the time trade-off. I spend a fraction of the time creating our SMS strategy for a definitely comparable ROI.
Double-Digit EPM with Conversational Messaging
For that reason, Apothékary embraces a conversational tone in all of their messaging—and the results speak for themselves. A recent VIP campaign announcing the launch of a subscription box resulted in double-digit earnings per message (EPM) and a click-through rate of nearly 75%.
Apothékary also takes a conversational approach in messages by offering additional help resources or inviting customers to ask questions—not just about purchased products, but also about health and wellness in general. They even have a “Fix Finder” quiz that they include as a fun way to engage subscribers and deliver relevant, personalized information to each individual customer.
“It changes the experience because it’s like having us in your pocket to answer questions about your wellness journey,” Katie said. “I think it’s added a personal touch that a lot of the other channels don’t naturally lend themselves to as well…It forms a really deep customer connection and brand loyalty that we haven’t seen in quite this same way with all of our other channels.”
Apothékary’s focus on driving product adoption and loyalty has directly impacted company revenue. Since adding the post-purchase flow, they’ve seen a 4.5% increase in SMS attributed revenue over a 30-day period.
Providing customer support through Gorgias and two-way SMS conversations
The channel has fostered such a positive customer experience that Apothékary recently started offering customer support via SMS—thanks to Postscript’s robust integration with Gorgias. That, Katie says, has been a game changer. “The customer has the experience that they’re just texting us while our team is able to operate in the same way as before on the back end,” she said. “It’s been cool to be able to have a very direct and personal conversation. It feels a bit different than email or social.”
But even with all of the impressive ROI metrics, Katie says the best part of partnering with Postscript is, hands-down, the people. While other SMS platforms claim to offer more bells and whistles, features and functionality mean nothing without the support necessary to use them to the fullest. In addition to “hand-holding every step of the way” during onboarding and implementation, the Postscript team continues to reach out proactively with campaign ideas and other data-backed suggestions. “The people at Postscript are why we’re still with Postscript,” Katie said. “We’re thrilled with SMS, and we’re very thrilled with the Postscript team. (Shout-out to Kara and Jared!)”
Solution and Results
By embracing conversational messaging to build rapport with subscribers - and setting up multiple trigger-based automations to make their messaging more contextual - Apothékary achieved notable ROI results, clickthrough rates, and revenue attributed to their SMS efforts.
ROI on add-to-cart abandonment
Click-through rate for conversational messaging
Increase in SMS attributed revenue with post-purchase flow
We’re thrilled with SMS, and we’re very thrilled with the Postscript team.