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For marketers who want to reach a larger audience, single-channel marketing is not enough anymore. In this age of social media, it’s all about multichannel marketing. And this also means exploring different marketing channels that you are not fully utilizing.
SMS marketing, for example, is underutilized because some marketers think it is “dead”. They assume that because social media is so popular, people are not texting anymore. But SMS messages are still being sent regularly, and if you are not using this marketing channel, you are missing out.
SMS marketing gives you a direct line to your customers, and this is perfect for establishing strong business relationships. As an entrepreneur, SMS marketing can give you a lot of benefits that you shouldn’t miss out on. It will even give you an edge over business owners that are not using this incredible marketing strategy.
Used correctly, it can increase your sales, increase brand awareness, and improve customer loyalty. But that’s the tricky part. How can you use SMS effectively? When are you supposed to use SMS marketing messages? Let’s take a closer look.
What is SMS Marketing?
First, let’s talk about what this marketing strategy is all about. SMS stands for short message service. Using it is very simple: you just send marketing messages to your SMS subscribers.
Text messaging is a good way to reach your customers through their mobile devices, whether they are a smartphone user or not. When you send a text message, it is delivered in real time. These messages are typically viewed within a few minutes by their recipients. This makes SMS marketing the perfect channel for targeted messaging.
It also complements your other digital marketing strategies. While you are reaching a larger audience with your other marketing efforts, you can use text message marketing to target your most loyal customers.
Consumers are becoming more and more comfortable interacting with businesses. In fact, most customers expect to be able to reach businesses via text. Now is the best time to get into SMS marketing.
When Should I Use SMS Marketing?
SMS marketing works best when used in moderation. Even if you have people’s phone numbers, you shouldn’t spam them with marketing messages. That’s a quick way to violate text marketing laws that are in place to protect consumers. If you don’t want to get in trouble with the law or pay hefty fines, you need to use SMS marketing properly. Later on we will discuss these regulations.
But when is SMS marketing used typically? An SMS marketing campaign can be used when you have coupons, flash events, and other short-term promos that you want to tell your customers about.
There are two types of SMS messages that you can send: promotional messages and transactional messages. Promotional texts are what we described above. They are used to put a spotlight on your latest offerings, whether it’s a new product, a new service, a sale, or an event. You can send promotional text messages to build hype around your brand.
Promo messages can serve as the vehicle for your calls to action. You can invite people to your store, tell them to visit your website, sign up for a raffle, etc. If you are conducting a limited-time sale or promotion, this is the best time to use SMS marketing.
If you are running an event and some urgent changes come up, SMS is the best way to give your customers these important updates, especially if you are expecting a lot of them to show up. A simple text message will help you communicate these essential updates to everyone.
Transactional messages, on the other hand, do not necessarily promote anything. Instead, they are used to give customers updates about their purchases. This includes order confirmation, shipping details, cart abandonment alerts, and other notifications. You are better off using an SMS marketing program to automate these messages.
You can also use SMS to send appointment reminders, which is very important if your business runs on scheduled appointments. It can prevent a lot of frustration on your part by making sure customers do not forget their appointment. You can also communicate with them directly via text so that it’s easy for them to make any changes, cancellations, etc.
Although they don’t promote anything, transactional messages improve customer engagement and experience. Therefore, they are more likely to stay loyal to your brand.
How Do I Start Text Message Marketing?
The first and most important rule of SMS campaigns is to avoid sending cold SMS. Cold SMS is when you send unsolicited marketing messages to people who did not give you their phone number. If your customers have no idea how you got their mobile number, then you are most likely sending a cold SMS. It is important to keep in mind that cold SMS, unlike cold email marketing, is illegal.
You need to ask for permission before you can send your customers a single text message. There are laws and regulations that protect consumers from spam and unsolicited texts.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the Telephone Consumer Protection Agency (TCPA) require businesses to secure explicit written consent from customers before sending them promotions. If you fail to do so, you may face substantial charges and fines.
This means that SMS is an opt-in form of marketing. It requires contacts to subscribe to your SMS list. The good news is that it is actually easy to make this happen.
Set up a sign up sheet in your website or your landing pages where customers can provide their phone number and explicit consent to receive messages from your business. Like we said earlier, consumers are becoming more and more open to communicating with the businesses they love. So if your customers are interested enough, you can easily convince them to sign up for your mobile marketing.
You can even incentivize them for your opt in marketing by offering exclusive deals and promos to your SMS subscribers. This will motivate more people to opt into your mobile marketing campaign.
The beauty of SMS marketing is that it works best when used on loyal customers. You are not likely to get a positive response from people who receive unwanted texts anyway. These people are just gonna get annoyed, and it can even hurt your brand.
Focus your SMS campaigns on people who actually want to hear from your business and want to receive updates from your brand. These are some of your most valuable leads because they are genuinely interested in what you have to offer.
Start building that contact list organically, and soon you will reap the benefits of SMS marketing.
The Best Way to Use SMS Messages
So instead of violating FCC regulations, make sure you secure those permissions and follow these SMS best practices.
Text message marketing is most impactful when you use it in moderation. Imagine how annoyed your customers will be if they gave you their phone number and you started texting them every single day. Do not spam them. This is the best way to lose subscribers.
Instead, message them only once a week or only when you have something important to promote. Otherwise, stick to your other marketing channels.
With SMS, people can’t just ignore your messages. Their phone lights up, it vibrates, and it notifies them that someone sent a text. Most people open texts from their family members or friends. So if they see that it’s just another branded message, they might get annoyed and opt out of your SMS marketing.
If you text them every day, they will quickly hit that unsubscribe link or simply start ignoring your texts the way they ignore most other marketing materials. Speaking of which, you need to make sure customers have access to that opt out option. If you follow these best practices, they won’t be unsubscribing any time soon.
You need to make every text message count. Only text them when you have something to promote that you think will interest them. This way, when you send SMS messages to your customers, they will instantly know that it is worth their time. This improves your chances of converting them or making a sale. Limiting your texts ensures that every message you send them is impactful.
This brings us to our other tip: make sure you send them relevant text messages. Some marketers segment their audience using different categories to make sure they are only sending relevant texts. You can segment your audience based on prior customer engagements or previous purchases. This way, you can send them offers and promos that might actually interest them.
You will make the most out of SMS advertising when you send text promotions for things they actually care about. Relevance is the key to a successful text marketing campaign.
SMS Marketing Statistics: What is the SMS Response Rate?
Text message marketing is simple and straightforward. It is limited to 160 characters. While this may seem short, it is actually more than enough to get your point across.
People have short attention spans, so you can actually use SMS advertising to your advantage. Your marketing message should be brief but informative. It should have everything customers need to react to your call to action.
Because of how short texts are, it is very easy for consumers to digest everything written. This is one of the biggest benefits of SMS marketing.
Text message marketing enjoys high open rates. It’s even better than emails in this regard. This is because people always keep their phones nearby: it’s usually in their pocket or their desk if they’re not already holding it. It’s the first thing they check in the morning.
Because of this, 90% of all text messages are read within the first three minutes. Text messages are displayed on the screen when people check their phone. They even get a snippet of the SMS message before they open it.
SMS marketing is more direct and more personal. It’s not like email marketing where people are constantly bombarded with messages from brands they don’t really care about, and so they ignore these messages or let them go directly to the spam folder.
Text messages are far less likely to be ignored, especially if you craft a concise, well-written, and relevant message. Plus, your customers don’t even have to download anything: the SMS service is already built into their phone. They don’t have to join any social media platform, etc.
In 2018, the open rate for SMS was as high as 98%. Meanwhile, email marketing campaigns only had an open rate of around 20%. A lot of people don’t check their emails regularly. On the other hand, people always check their texts.
SMS messages also have a high response rate, with the average response rate being around 45%.
When sending text messages, don’t forget to identify yourself. Not everyone will save your number in their SMS contacts. You want to make sure your customers actually know who you are when they’re reading about your hottest promos.
You have plenty of options when it comes to SMS marketing software, and these tools will help you launch your SMS campaigns with ease. You can automate or schedule your SMS messages, personalize your texts, and gather useful data through analytics. Find a tool that suits your business goals and you can launch your SMS campaign in no time.
When used correctly, SMS messaging is perfect for building trust and brand loyalty. Even with the popularity of social media, you can’t beat the impact of a well-written, well-timed text.
More than Sending SMS Messages: Use Kennected to Generate More Leads
SMS marketing gives your company the ability to reach leads, prospects, and customers through their mobile devices. But if you want to take this to the next level, use Kennected while you leverage SMS marketing. This LinkedIn automation tool simplifies your lead generation.
With Kennected, you can unlock the power of automated lead generation. This revolutionary marketing software taps into LinkedIn’s database of professionals, entrepreneurs, CEOs, and decision makers to bring you the best leads for your business. Choose your target audience with ease and find your exact target customers.
Kennected lets you personalize your messages so that your leads are more likely to respond. This also increases your conversion rate significantly. If you want to find a way to stand out in your prospect’s inbox, personalizing your messages is essential. And just like any SMS marketing platform, Kennected does that for you automatically. It is the best tool to complement your existing SMS marketing strategy. This is why many clients have stayed on board for a long time.
Kennected’s Smart Inbox is integrated with your LinkedIn so you can manage all of your prospects’ communication. Imagine being able to send personalized messages to everyone in your defined area or town that has a LinkedIn account. You can craft an offer that is exclusive to LinkedIn. Whether the lead buys something off of your first message or just chooses to connect with you—you win. Once they connect with you on LinkedIn, you have access to their email, phone numbers, and other information that are publicly available.
Kennected can help you build up your SMS list as well as email list for your email marketing campaigns. It’s about being everywhere your ideal potential customers are. Kennected can help you grow your business.
More than 17,000 clients trust Kennected to help grow their businesses. You can be one of them. Book a demo with Kennected today to learn more.