SMS Text Marketing: What is It, and How Does it Work?

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Text marketing has 500% greater open rates than email.  Now that we have your attention….please read on to learn more about text message marketing, how it works, and how it can help your business.

You can’t hope to effectively market to prospects without knowing where to find them. While digital marketing offers a wide array of channels through which to reach customers, including social media and email, reaching out via text messages is by far the fastest, easiest and most reliable way to reach them. With SMS text marketing, you can reach existing and prospective customers where they are – on their phones. Given that 85 percent of mobile device users prefer text messages over phone calls and emails, text marketing is among the least intrusive and most dependable ways to get your point across.

More than 7 trillion text messages are sent every year, and that figure continues to grow. Given that the younger generations solidly prefer text messaging over other forms of communication, it makes sense to start making SMS marketing a priority for your business. As cost-effective as this type of marketing is, there’s no reason not to get started with it today.

 

It’s been estimated that nearly 3 billion smartphones will be in service by the end of 2020. If you include regular cell phones in that count, the figure is far higher still. Unlike things like email and website marketing, text message marketing can reach even those who haven’t upgraded to smartphones yet. Although millennials overwhelmingly use smartphones – one-third of them check their smartphone screens once every five minutes – many seniors, in particular, continue to use regular cell phones. One of the best things about SMS marketing campaigns is that they can reach people across all generations and demographics, letting you cast a wider marketing net.

What is Text Marketing?

Text message marketing, or SMS text message marketing, refers to sending marketing materials to prospects via text messages. The first and most important thing that should be understood about this type of marketing is that it is strictly permission based. This means that you should only send text marketing messages to people who have opted in to receive them. Therefore, a crucial aspect of effective SMS marketing is developing a list of people who want to receive those text messages. Once that is in hand, the sky’s the limit in terms of what you can do.

 

How Does Text Marketing Work?

 

It’s easy to assume that using SMS, or short messaging system, messages to advertise your business means using a smartphone to send text messages to prospects and existing customers. However, using a private smartphone to send text messages to customers goes against many legal standards that have been established to protect people’s privacy. Instead, to engage in SMS marketing, you need a text marketing service or text marketing platform that automates everything for you. Such software tends to be very intuitive and easy to use, and it’s usually available for download as an app.

 

Some of the primary steps and best practices that are involved in effective text message marketing include:

  1. Develop a list – Use email or other means to encourage people to sign up to receive text messages from your company. Make sure to keep the list updated as people opt in or opt out to avoid any trouble.
  2. Make it easy – The software or app that you use should allow you to establish a short code, a five-to-six-digit number that can then be provided to people who’d like to sign up to receive messages. You can then create a keyword, or text-word, for people to use to sign up to specific lists. For example, if your company sells footwear, your text-word might be “shoes.”
  3. Confirm their participation – After submitting a text-word to your designated short-code or long-code, a subscriber should receive a confirmation message ensuring that they want to opt in to receive messages from your company. Thank them for signing up, and offer them something of value to show that it’ll be worth their while to stay in touch. It is also smart to let them know how frequently they can expect to receive text messages from your business along with instructions for easily opting out of them if need be.
  4. Measure the effectiveness of your campaign – One of the best things about text marketing is that it’s easy to track the success of any given campaign in real time. For example, you can track how your opt-in list is growing – or shrinking – to gauge how well your messages are being received. You can also track redemption rates for offer codes that you include in your messages.
  5. Optimize and update as needed – Use the information that you collect regarding the success of any given campaign to inform future text message marketing campaigns. You will start to learn what your target audience is likely to respond to and what it isn’t, and this will help you to achieve even greater success with your SMS marketing efforts.

 

Top Benefits of Text Message Marketing

 

Some of the top benefits of text message marketing include:

  • It’s cost effective
  • There’s no learning curve for people who opt in or apps to download
  • Messages can easily be forwarded to friends and family, expanding your reach
  • Reach thousands of people in an instant
  • Useful for every stage of the marketing cycle
  • It’s less intrusive – people can read messages when they want to
  • It creates a sense of urgency and intimacy, enhancing overall branding efforts in a big way
  • It has 500% greater engagement and open rates than email

More than 7 trillion text messages are sent every year, and that figure continues to grow. Given that the younger generations solidly prefer text messaging over other forms of communication, it makes sense to start making SMS marketing a priority for your business. As cost-effective as this type of marketing is, there’s no reason not to get started with it today.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]

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