With customers always on the move, businesses are looking for new and innovative opportunities to connect with them quickly. From utility to entertainment, fitness to health, and even calendars and alarm clocks, smartphones have taken over. So it comes as no surprise that smartphones are the marketing platforms of the future. And while there are many marketing strategies and channels, an often underrated and under-utilised platform is SMS marketing.
Bulk SMS marketing is one of the best marketing strategies available for small to mid-size businesses. Look at it this way, your customers are always on the go and may miss out on vital marketing channels, but a notification on their phone is something they can’t miss.
The first thing you reach out to in the morning isn’t your cup of coffee or a newspaper but your smartphone. So, the SMS marketing strategy, particularly for small and mid-size businesses, is one of the best promotion ideas.
Though SMS marketing has enormous potential, very few digital marketing agencies take advantage of this feature. Businesses erroneously assume that mobile marketing requires high app investment, does not allow for customized, targeted communication, and lacks good ROI. That couldn’t be further from the truth as SMS marketing much more accessible than perceived, and it can be as easy as sending a tailored text message to mobile users.
How many times has a notification about a sale at your favorite store or the reopening of your favorite brought a smile to your face? Maybe even made you venture out and go on a shopping spree. ‘SMS’ may be a simple three-letter word, but the potentialities it offers are endless.
So, in this article, we’ll cover the benefits of SMS marketing and the best way to put it to use.
Why does SMS marketing do so well?
You can’t argue that bulk messages are one of the best ways to reach out to your customers. But don’t just take our word for it. We’ve got proof to support our claim.
1. Say no
SMS marketing is not deemed spam as there are specific, clear permission-based marketing guidelines to be enforced- it’s 100% opt-in dependent.
This means that before receiving SMS messages over, customers need to give their consent.
Usually, this can be done in one of three ways:
- A new subscriber can opt-in using the web widget.
- Include their phone number in a sign-up page or sign-up form.
- Text back to join.
Of these options, the last one appears to be the procedure that is most widely followed.
Upon opting for the SMS service, they’ll get an auto-reply where they can approve their subscription. However, if the opt-in is unintentional, the subscriber can message STOP, and all messaging will cease.
2. Say yes
Everyone reads messages. Well, without sounding like an exaggeration, almost everyone does. An SMS notification doesn’t go unnoticed. Here are a few statistics to support that:
- There is a staggering 98% open rate for SMS.
- Text messages have a response rate that is 209% greater than a phone call, email, or Facebook message.
- Within 3 minutes, 90% of SMS messages are read.
- SMS-delivered coupons are redeemed by customers ten times more than other coupons.
According to a recent study by Dynmark.com
- Nearly one-third of all people targeted with SMS marketing campaigns respond to such correspondence
- The study also indicates that almost half of this proportion goes on to make a sale.
So, this shows the enormous potential of Bulk SMS marketing. But as with all things in life, it needs to be done right.
3. Do not disturb
The Dynmark.com study’s findings show the effectiveness of SMS marketing, provided that people have the right to register with the ‘do not disturb’ registry.
Though there are a lot of people who have registered for DND, there are a few elements of controversy, such as:
- First, there is no reliable statistical evidence to back the ‘DND factor.’
Second, DND only protects users from unwanted calls and does not include messages.
- The DND feature was developed to prohibit telemarketers from harassing customers to make transactions over a phone call and does not apply to text messages.
Meaning that the only way a customer can opt-out of receiving unwanted messages is to file a complaint against the sender. However, on the other hand, if you know and follow the principles and purpose of the permission-based marketing process, you don’t have to think about such issues.
If you follow these rules, you can easily reach out to more customers and lure them over.
Best practices for SMS marketing
So if you’re planning to use SMS marketing, make sure you follow these practices for a successful campaign.
Timing matters: When it comes to SMS marketing, you don’t want to be at the right place at the wrong time. Since SMS is instantaneous, the time you send out your messages is crucial to your campaign’s progress. The customer will typically open your messages within a few minutes, so it’s better to send SMS messages when your customer is ready to make a related decision. For instance, a coffee shop can send out reminders at 10 AM before the work hour rush, while a cinema theatre could send out messages an hour before their evening show.
Short and sweet: Ensure your messages are short and to the point. Don’t ramble and lose the customer’s interest. Customers don’t want to have to read through an ocean of text. Please keep it to 20 words or less. Also, to improve customer engagement, keep your SMS marketing messages punchy and insightful.
Include a CTA: SMS marketing is a great marketing strategy, but it’s pointless if the customer doesn’t know what you expect from them. This is why it’s essential to have a strong call to action. At the end of your message, include a link to your website, campaign page, or a word or phrase to send a number to obtain a promotional code. Whatever it might be, don’t forget to include a CTA.
Growing your small business could seem tricky, and you may struggle to figure out what works and what doesn’t. But don’t worry, we’ve all been there. SMS marketing is a great tool to add to your marketing toolbox.
It’s quicker, cheaper, and has a broader reach than many other marketing channels. Yet, a lot of businesses aren’t taking advantage of it. So don’t make that mistake.
Make use of SMS marketing and gain that edge over your competition. There is no better time than the present to start. Leverage the potential of SMS marketing right now.