23 billion text messages are sent every day across the world. That’s a lot of texts – and a lot of opportunities for businesses to market their products and services.
Keep reading to learn about SMS marketing and the steps you can take to start building a successful SMS marketing campaign for your company!
What Is SMS Marketing?
SMS marketing is also referred to as text message marketing. It’s when businesses send promotional campaigns or other messages via text message. These messages are permission-based, meaning customers have opted-in to your communications. This creates highly targeted marketing lists with customers that want to engage with your business.
Why Use SMS Marketing?
With smartphones seemingly everywhere, SMS has become one of the most useful marketing tools available. With a 98% open rate, SMS has also become one of the preferred methods of communication of smartphone users.
SMS messages have a staggeringly high engagement rate compared to other marketing channels. By using SMS marketing you can be sure that your target audience will read your messages and can count on a high return on investment.
Steps to a Successful SMS Marketing Campaign
Now you understand the basics of SMS marketing and why you should be using it! Let’s jump into how to launch a successful SMS marketing campaign for your business.
1. Get Your Team in Order
First things first. To start an SMS marketing campaign, you need to make sure you have the right resources in place. Some of the skills you’ll want to make sure exist on your team are:
- Digital design
- Social media
- Promotions experience
- ROI analysis
Once you have the right team, you’ll need to set objectives and get everyone on the same page. It’s important to understand what the team wants to accomplish with the SMS marketing campaign. Are you trying to drive more traffic to your website? Or do you want to boost the sales of a particular product?
No matter what the primary objective is, be sure to clearly identify it before you launch your campaign. That way the messaging can be framed around the objective and your team will be more successful in accomplishing it.
2. Keep It Short
Consumers typically look for convenience and aren’t going to spend a lot of time reading a lengthy marketing text message. Maybe that’s why SMS marketing messages are limited to 160 characters. If you can get your message across in less, that’s even better.
You need to get to the point of your message quickly and make sure it’s clear. Using clear and concise language can help with that. Avoid using abbreviations and only use all caps sporadically to emphasize certain words.
Be sure you are giving your customers all the pertinent information they need. For example, if you’re marketing a sale, you should include when the sale ends. There is a higher likelihood that your customers will take action if they have the information they need.
3. Timing Is Key
Understanding when and how much to text your customers is key to a successful text campaign.
The majority of text messages are read within three minutes of when they’re received. This gives you an indication that SMS marketing is most effective when it creates a last-minute impulse for your customers. If you’re promoting an event or hosting a sale, send the text message a few hours before. Your audience is likely to forget about your event if you send it days in advance.
During the beginning of your SMS campaign, you can test sending messages at different times to see when your audience is most responsive. This will help inform your strategy going forward.
The frequency of messaging is another piece of timing to take into consideration. You don’t want to spam your customers – sending too many messages will push some people to stop engaging or completely opt-out of your campaign. A good rule of thumb for text message marketing is to stick to 1-2 messages a week at the most.
4. Be Exclusive
Creating a sense of exclusivity is one of the best ways to attract customers to an SMS messaging campaign and keep them engaged. You want to make sure that offers made through your bulk SMS marketing are unique and unavailable to people who aren’t subscribed.
5. Use Call to Action Buttons
The whole point of an SMS marketing campaign is to get your customers to engage, interact, and act on the text messages you send them. A great way to do that is to use calls-to-action in your texts.
For example, if you are pushing out a discount code through the SMS channel you can ask customers to “show this text” in-store to get the discount. This is an easy way to get customers to engage with your text marketing and promotions.
Other calls-to-action include “click here” for more information or running “text-to-win” competitions where you ask customers to text in order to enter the contest. Both of these tactics will drive traffic to your site and can increase sales.
6. Integrate With Your Other Marketing Strategies
Your SMS marketing campaign shouldn’t exist in a vacuum. Integrating it with your other market initiatives will provide a couple of benefits. You’ll ensure all your marketing campaigns are consistent across channels and it gives you more ways to promote your SMS campaign.
If you already use email marketing, you can send an email that shares how to opt-in to exclusive deals and information your company has to offer. This will help you reach more customers by expanding your marketing campaign through various channels.
7. Record and Analyze Data
Collecting data to determine what is and isn’t working in your marketing campaign is crucial for success. Take the time to analyze results and figure out which of your SMS campaigns were successful and which ones could use refinement. Comparing different outcomes can help you create an approach that drives the best results for your company.
Launch Your SMS Marketing Campaign
Are you ready to get down to business and launch a successful SMS marketing campaign? With the tips in this guide, you’ll be on your way to increasing customer engagement and loyalty.
If you’re looking to take your text messaging campaign to the next level, contact us at Forge Digital Marketing and Creative to learn more about our SMS marketing services!