If you are not adding SMS marketing to your multi-channel marketing campaigns, then you are missing out. With over 150 million people using text messaging services in North America, there is much to be gained from strong SMS marketing campaign strategies. Many industries have benefited from the SMS marketing service. But what is SMS marketing and how is it used? Here are some ways different industries use SMS marketing:
• Health and Beauty: Salon owners use SMS marketing to send appointment reminders and reduce or eliminate no-shows.
• Hospitality: Business owners in this industry use location-based marketing to send hotel or restaurant discounts and special offers via SMS at the last minute.
• Retail: Retailers send their customers loyalty rewards, special deals and discounts through SMS.
• Travel: Travel agencies use SMS marketing to confirm or update flight schedules and send travel ticket QR codes, flight schedule reminders, details on nearest car rentals and special perks.
• Real Estate: Real estate companies or agents send invitations to open house events, list information and link to book a viewing appointment.
Knowing the practical uses of SMS marketing helps you better understand the impact of text message marketing on today’s modern businesses and how you can use the best SMS marketing strategies to increase your revenue.
Let’s Investigate SMS Marketing for Your Business
As any business owner will do, you’ve probably wondered how you can market your products and services and move potential customers further down the funnel. SMS marketing can be your solution.
Your customers regularly receive a lot of emails. They may not remember the email you sent them last week about the sale you are making on payday or the freebies you are giving today. SMS marketing reminds them of that day and the brevity of your SMS promotional material means your receivers get the gist of it right away.
Perhaps you have a highly engaged customer base. Do you find yourself stressing over the need to respond to every single SMS you receive? Customers appreciate quick answers, but a busy business owner may not have full time to answer each of them. Automating some moving parts seems like an efficient option.
What Is SMS Marketing?
SMS marketing is a powerful tool that can propel your business to success. This entails sending promotional materials and transactional messages through SMS. This can be in the form of sales deals, promotional offers and loyalty rewards. It could also be an appointment reminder or an invitation to answer a survey. They may take various forms but they have the same goal of marketing your brand across. These messages are sent to recipients who have given you their consent to receive SMS from your company.
But before you create your SMS campaign strategies, it is important to understand what SMS marketing is definitively.
As a business owner you’ve probably pondered questions like:
• What is SMS marketing, exactly?
• What is SMS marketing going to do for my business?
• Will my clients relate to SMS marketing?
• What are the best text message marketing strategies?
In short, SMS marketing uses the mobile phone’s SMS or text messaging service to communicate with and engage their customers. An SMS has a 160-character limit, and if you exceed this limit, your message is sent in two parts. Therefore, it is best that SMS marketers keep their message copy concise and attractive.
How Does SMS Marketing Work?
To receive text message marketing offers to customers, they have to give their permission. They can do this over the phone, at your brick-and-mortar store, or on your website. This can also be done by texting a keyword to a phone number or a five to six digit short code. Texting these keywords means that they are giving their consent to join your SMS marketing campaign.
How do businesses keep pace with their hundreds of text message marketing recipients? What does it take to deliver a quality SMS marketing campaign that gives a good return on investment (ROI)?
The answer to both these questions is automation.
Continuity is required to build a solid and profitable relationship with your customers. Drip marketing campaigns – where messages are automatically sent to contacts on a schedule – help to keep your business on top with customers and prospects. This marketing automation is commonly used in email marketing, survey campaigns, and SMS marketing.
For a successful SMS marketing campaign, you will want to create and manage a database that contains your customers’ contact information. With SMS marketing, customers and prospects must first confirm their consent to receive these marketing materials.
You may have seen advertisements that ask you to send a certain number of keywords in exchange for a product, service, or party. You may have also seen online pop-ups that ask you to sign up. This is one of the ways a company can create a database of potential customers for its drip marketing campaigns.
SMS Marketing Software and Apps
If you prefer to manage your SMS marketing campaign yourself or have an in-house marketing team, there are text message marketing software apps that are worth investing in that can automate your SMS sending. SMS marketing software apps are similar to email marketing software but are designed to send short SMS, not large content.
These SMS marketing software and email marketing software apps allow you to customize your messages and send them to all recipients of your database in a few clicks. Many text message marketing software apps integrate well with other systems, such as CRM (customer relationship management) tools.
In other words, your text message marketing software can communicate with your CRM and vice versa. With such integration you can sync your contacts from your CRM to your SMS marketing app and feed whatever data you collect from your SMS marketing campaigns to your CRM, saving you time and your Sales and marketing efforts get a boost.
There are some text message marketing software options available, so you will want to choose the best SMS marketing app that suits your business needs.
So, how do you take advantage of this technology and get good returns? You will need a strong SMS marketing plan for your business.