Fast Growing Trees grows SMS click rate 231.7% by shifting focus from MMS to SMS

Customer: Fast Growing TreesIndustry: Home and GardenPlatform: Shopify Plus


QoQ growth in SMS click rate after strategy update


QoQ growth in SMS placed order rate after strategy update


QoQ growth in revenue per SMS message after strategy update

Fast Growing Trees is the largest online nursery, and a pioneer of the farm-to-backyard business model. From the widest selection of unique products to the simplest delivery and continued plant support, their one-stop shop makes growing easy. Since 2005, the team has connected 1.8M+ customers with live trees.

To stay in touch with their rapidly-growing customer base, Fast Growing Trees relies on a powerful marketing automation platform: Klaviyo.

Why Fast Growing Trees pared down their SMS strategy—and stuck with Klaviyo


Fast Growing Trees was looking to grow their SMS marketing channel.

“When I started, we weren’t really using it as a strategic channel or testing within it,” explains Sydney Brodo, senior marketing manager of lifecycle and loyalty.

Fast Growing Trees sent 4-5 MMS campaigns per week to their 180-day engaged segment, with creative mirroring email campaigns.

An MMS send, which can include an image or GIF, costs 3x what a plain-text SMS send costs, because it takes more data to send an image or a GIF with a text message.

SMS was quickly becoming a high-spend channel, and it was time to iterate on strategy.


The team decided to start by A/B testing MMS vs. SMS campaigns. The results surprised them.

SMS, the less expensive option, drove the best engagement by far—about 10x the expected click rate on some sends, Brodo recalls, for a third of the price.

Fast Growing Trees started sending primarily SMS messages to a smaller list of subscribers—60-day engaged, as opposed to 180-day, a decision rooted in Klaviyo’s segment-level campaign reporting.

They also cut the frequency of their SMS campaigns, reserving them for urgent, last-chance messaging.

Since the strategy shift at the end of June 2023, their revenue per SMS message has grown 35% QoQ.


Armed with their new SMS approach, Fast Growing Trees started rolling out a more personalized strategy across email and SMS.

Prospects often discover the brand’s site by googling a specific plant, so Fast Growing Trees increasingly customizes messaging to reflect subscribers’ horticultural interests.

That means testing out approaches like:

  • Two-way SMS: Fast Growing Trees recently added an SMS to the end of their post-purchase flow, asking which product category the customer plans to buy from next. Respondents get a link to the relevant category page, and Brodo can segment based on that response in future sends.
  • First-purchase anniversary flow: This hybrid email-and-SMS flow celebrates a customer’s first purchase, pulling in a photo of the plant they bought and its name, and encouraging them to buy again.

Optimizing and personalizing their owned marketing in this way all starts with customer data—email and SMS engagement data and purchase data, centralized in Klaviyo where it’s easy to analyze and act on.

“We would’ve had a really hard time generating our pre-built SMS reports on our own,” Brodo says. “The pre-built dashboards are very user-friendly. Klaviyo is the best for people who don’t have as many of the do-it-yourself analytics skills.”

We would’ve had a really hard time generating our pre-built SMS dashboards on our own. Klaviyo is the best for people who don’t have as many of the do-it-yourself analytics skills.
Sydney Brodo
Senior marketing manager of loyalty and retention, Fast Growing Trees
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