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SMS is the fastest-growing marketing channel on the planet. In fact, 91% of consumers would agree to receive text messages from brands. Many businesses have recognized an opportunity to use this cost-effective form of marketing as a way to reach their ideal customers. And knowing that SMS messages’ open rates are 98% on average, it’s easy to see why this marketing method grows in popularity.
The SMS marketing method usually involves sending a short but well-formulated and enticing message. You can send SMS online, from the computer, and of course from a mobile phone. Within a few minutes, almost 100% of the people who received your SMS will have read your message.
If you're looking to start with SMS marketing, below we offer a comprehensive beginner's guide.
Text messaging will always be one of the best marketing tools as long as you obtain permission before sending out messages. If you fail to get consent from prospects or customers to text them, you could end up facing legal problems. Also, getting texts without permission can feel spammy and give a bad rep to your company.
Avoid uploading a list of phone numbers of contacts manually and start to send out texts. You must first get permission from your contacts. People tend to forget when they opt-in to lists so always keep a record of opt-in agreements.
When you message someone, you want to make it clear who you are, especially if it’s the first text you send. Some recipients may save your number on their devices and some might not. For this reason, brand your texts with something that will make it crystal clear what you’re about. When introducing yourself to new subscribers, let them know how often you’ll message them and what type of content they can expect.
As a result, ensure relevance with a couple of data points that indicate the customer is ready to listen to you. Last purchase date, newsletter opens or clicks and demographic data are examples that can help you find the right segment.
Segment Your Lists
A big advantage of SMS is that you can easily and quickly send out current offers and campaigns. But not all offers are for all customers. And many customers can get a little extra picky when companies or organizations get in touch via SMS.
Keep It Simple
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Mobile e-commerce is growing at an alarming rate, and with the growth, SMS is becoming an increasingly obvious channel for driving traffic to your online store. So, make sure that the link, as well as the discount code, is short and simple, and that the recipient lands on a mobile-friendly page. When you keep things simple, you’ll see better results and not get pinged as spam.
Even though SMS often contain short messages, it’s important that your wording matches your brand's tone of voice and that your target group understands your message. An effective way to keep characters down is for you to link to a mobile-friendly landing page for more information.
Make It Easy to Opt Out
Even if you've done your homework and created a good list segmentation, there will always be certain people who don't appreciate SMS advertising. For this reason, you should make it easy for customers to opt out of your SMS list.
Yes, this would mean losing some subscribers but you will be happy to know that those who remain on your list are there because they want to read your messages and see what you have to say, and not because it’s difficult to unsubscribe. A good way to make your customers feel like they are in control is having them text you first to join and confirm their subscription.
Keep Context In Mind
When creating your SMS marketing campaigns, try to avoid sending random messages to your subscribers. Unsolicited messages aren’t usually the best performers. Instead, contextually relevant texts are a better option and are much more likely to get a click-through, which in turn leads to higher conversion rates.
Schedule SMS According to Customer Needs
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Although each customer is unique, it’s often possible to find patterns in behavior or buying cycles. With the right analysis, you can predict when the customer needs your goods or services. Let's say you run a nail salon where you know that the average customer gets a manicure about seven weeks apart. Why not schedule an SMS when six weeks have passed since their last visit?
SMS marketing has changed the marketing landscape by providing businesses with the opportunity to drive leads and achieve high engagement. Use these best practices, achieve a higher conversion rate, and build strong customer relationships.