Businesses of all sizes are quickly discovering that they can (and should) integrate text message marketing into their overall marketing strategy. Studies show that 97% of Americans own a cell phone and 85% own a smartphone specifically; a majority of those people prefer texting over talking, making SMS (Short Message Service) a desirable marketing solution.
You can easily acquire customer phone numbers through various methods. Once you curate your customer database and establish a thoughtful marketing strategy, SMS can be a great way to connect with customers and increase sales.
What is text message marketing?
Text message marketing is a type of digital marketing that involves communicating promotions, sales, coupons, confirmations, news, updates and other relevant business information to your customers via SMS on their mobile devices.
There are several laws for SMS marketing, such as the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and the Controlling the Assault of Non-Solicited Pornography and Marketing Act (CAN-SPAM Act), so you must be diligent in creating a strategic and lawful SMS business marketing plan.
FYI: Text message marketing shouldn’t be used on its own. It works best when it is one component of a larger digital marketing strategy.
Why should businesses use text message marketing?
Text messaging has become one of the best ways for businesses to communicate with customers. If you are on the fence about implementing SMS marketing into your digital marketing strategy, here are 10 ways it can benefit you.
1. Direct and immediate message delivery
SMS is the most immediate marketing channel available. SMS Comparison found that 98% of text messages are opened and read, and that most are read within three minutes of delivery. Direct communication with consumers can prompt an immediate purchase. This direct communication can also cultivate lasting relationships between your brand and your customers.
2. Instant deliverability
Another great thing about SMS marketing is that even people who don’t own a smartphone can send and receive text messages. This makes SMS marketing one of the most accessible and effective tools for instantly delivering promotional messages to consumers.
Additionally, text messages usually deliver within seconds. The average SMS delivery time for most mobile carriers is less than 10 seconds. Brands can deliver time-sensitive messages instantly. With brands struggling to increase email deliverability, the high level of SMS deliverability makes SMS marketing a worthwhile investment.
3. High open rate
A higher open rate makes a marketing campaign more effective. At 98%, the average SMS open rate is more than five times that of the average email open rate (17%). Brands don’t have to worry about crafting a great subject line that will encourage recipients to open and read a text message. The buzz going off in a mobile user’s pocket is all the motivation they need to open a text message.
4. High conversion rate
SMS has a very high conversion rate. Mobile users respond to calls to action in text messages more than any other marketing channel. SMS messages have an average response rate of 45%, compared with an average email response rate of just 8%. The reason conversion rates are higher with SMS is the simplicity of the marketing message. Text messages are short, they don’t include a lot of links and they are not bogged down with a lot of images. The call to action is clear and concise.
5. Personalization and customization
Text messages are more personal than other forms of communication. Since your marketing messages are being delivered directly to your consumers’ personal messaging inboxes, you can use casual, friendly language. Instead of traditional marketing and sales language, approach this form of communication as though you are talking with a friend. This allows you to build a personal relationship with the consumer. You can also create a personal feel by customizing your messages.
Tip: Amplify your text messaging communication by using MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) features such as images, GIFs, video and audio clips, and emojis.
6. Brand awareness
SMS marketing is great for increasing brand awareness. Implementing effective SMS messaging between brands and mobile device users is a great way to attract and engage customers throughout the buying process. Since users check their text messages multiple times a day, you can stay top of mind with consistent messages.
Personal, consistent and reliable messages can also foster trust and loyalty among your consumers. When customers are loyal and engaged with your business, they are more likely to recommend your product or service to a friend, thus expanding brand awareness.
7. Quick feedback from customers
You can initiate surveys and polls via SMS and receive results quickly. Customer feedback is valuable for helping companies improve their products. It could also help you learn more about market trends and better understand customer preferences.
SMS marketing efforts are inexpensive compared to other marketing solutions. Since it has a high open rate and response rate, text message marketing can garner a high return on investment. This makes it a cost-effective tool to add to your overall marketing strategy.
9. Easy implementation
This type of marketing is permission-based, so you already know your customers are opting in to receive your messages. Once you’ve created an SMS campaign, you can easily track, manage and optimize performance. With the help of SMS marketing automation, brands can create, schedule and automate smart targeting campaigns.
10. No spam filters
Marketers don’t have to worry about their promotional text messages ending up in the spam folder. The filters that email marketers have to battle with do not exist in the world of SMS. When someone opts in to receive SMS marketing messages, marketers don’t have to remind them to whitelist their short code so that their messages don’t accidentally land in a spam folder.
Top text message marketing services
If you’ve decided that text message marketing is right for you, check out some of these highly rated SMS marketing services to get started.
- Textedly: This user-friendly system includes a variety of marketing tools to help you create a successful campaign. It is also known for its excellent customer service. Check out our Textedly review to learn more.
- EZ Texting: This platform has a wide range of features and an intuitive dashboard. It’s ideal for those who want access to comprehensive analytics. Check out our review of EZ Texting to learn more.
- SimpleTexting: This software is highly customizable and can be easily scaled to meet the needs of your business. It offers several plans to fit your business’s budget. Check out our review of SimpleTexting to learn more.
- Podium: This all-in-one messaging platform is incredibly easy to use. You can message via mobile and desktop apps, and it has autoresponder options. Check out our Podium review to learn more.
Genia Stevens contributed to the writing and research in this article.