Almost every American consumer has a smartphone, and American smartphone owners check their phones an average of 96 times per day, according to data from Asurion. Because people check their phones so often, SMS for business can be a powerful marketing tool for brands wanting to keep their customers in the loop.
How you write your marketing messages and design SMS campaigns can have a serious impact on their effectiveness, however. Here are 15 text message marketing examples that work, broken down by message type, along with strategies for how your business can adapt these examples to its next SMS marketing campaign.
Before launching an SMS marketing campaign, read up on the text message laws that must guide your outreach actions.
Introduction and welcome texts
A customer’s first encounter with a brand is an important opportunity to make a positive impression and encourage them to opt in to receive future updates from your company. It’s also an opportunity to provide a receipt for their first purchase.
An introduction text is likely the first business text a customer will receive from your company, so knowing how to design them effectively will be essential.
Welcome note and opt-in confirmation
Here’s an example of a simple and effective welcome note and opt-in confirmation:
- Thank you for signing up to receive updates! To confirm you want to keep receiving texts from us, please reply “Yes.”
If you don’t need customers to opt in to messaging – for example, because you don’t plan to send them updates – you can use a similar text message to thank them for signing up and provide a discount or coupon to encourage them to make a purchase.
2. Referral offer for new customers
Here’s an example of a simple and effective referral offer for new customers:
- Thank you for signing up to receive updates! To refer your friends and get 10% off your next order, use your custom referral link.
A custom referral link can be something like “onlineshop.com/uniquereferral.”
Many businesses use their introductory texts as a way to boost client referrals. This promotion encourages customers to reach out to friends and family about your business.
It’s possible to use a link shortener to keep the link at the end of the message as brief as possible, but there are benefits to using a longer link with a more obvious destination. This link will act as a call to action (CTA) and appear less suspicious to message recipients.
Event invitations and reminders
Event invitations and reminders are another way to reach out to customers, build brand awareness and boost customer loyalty.
3. Webinar or online event invitation
Here’s an example of a simple and effective referral offer for new customers:
- Join us for a virtual event this Friday at 4 p.m. RSVP or learn more here: Eventlink.com.
Alert customers to upcoming events with a brief text telling them about the event’s purpose and where and when it will be held. You also want to direct them to a web page where they can learn more about the event.
If the event is virtual, it may also be a good idea to include a quick note at the end of the text letting customers know they can attend online.
4. Conference offer
Here’s an example of a simple and effective conference offer:
- Calling all small business owners: Our annual e-commerce summit starts this weekend. Join us for the latest news on e-commerce tech and trends. Click here to sign up now and receive 25% off the cost of admission.
For events with paid admissions, you can also use the invitation text to offer a discount on admission fees. These texts alert target audience members about upcoming events and encourage them to act quickly to secure their discounted admission.
Booking confirmation and appointment reminders
Booking confirmations and appointment reminders are helpful to the customer and assure the business that an expected appointment will occur.
5. Booking confirmation
Here’s an example of a simple and effective booking confirmation a customer would receive after setting an appointment or booking a service:
- Hi, Sarah. This message is to confirm your appointment with Local Credit Union at 2:30 p.m. on Sept. 25. If you have questions or need to change your appointment, please call us at 555-555-5555 or visit our online customer portal. Text STOP to end.
This confirmation is personalized with the customer’s name and contains all the details they need about their upcoming booking, including the business’s name, the appointment date and contact information, as well as a way to opt out.
At a glance, the customer can review the appointment details and know whom to call or where to go if they have questions. They can also opt out if they don’t want to receive text updates about this or future appointments.
SMS polling for businesses is a great way to gauge customer reactions to product decisions and future marketing moves.
6. Appointment reminder and confirmation
Here’s an example of a direct appointment confirmation request:
- Hi, Sarah. Please confirm your appointment with us tomorrow at 2:30 p.m. by replying YES to this message.
Appointment confirmations are a great way to remind customers of upcoming appointments and reconfirm a booking. They help simplify scheduling and prevent missed appointments or short-notice rescheduling.
Chatbot software in texts can be helpful to customers and lighten the load for your support team.
7. Chatbots and phone menus
Chatbots are a powerful text messaging system application. These bots use preprogrammed responses to answer questions and provide information to customers.
For example, you could follow the lead of mountain lifestyle brand Stio, which used chatbots to connect customers with information about the business’s catalog and with support when preprogrammed answers weren’t enough. The company used chatbot software that integrated with its e-commerce support platform – a feature many chatbot platforms offer. With this functionality, you can unify your chatbot operations with your e-commerce and customer support platforms, ensuring a seamless experience.
Sales, promotions and loyalty offers
SMS marketing is also a great way to alert customers to your business’s latest deals and offerings. These messages can be sent ahead of an event or when certain conditions are met to highlight upcoming sales and sale events, notify customers about earned loyalty rewards or offers, and market new products from your business.
8. Abandoned cart offer
Here’s an example of a text reminder about items left in an e-commerce shopping cart:
- Hey, Robert. I see you left some items in your shopping cart. Click here to return to your cart and complete your order: Onlineshop.com/cart
This type of message is sent when a customer navigates to checkout or adds items to their cart but doesn’t complete an order.
Abandoned cart texts can remind customers about orders they’ve forgotten or help encourage a conversion. Many businesses also use these messages to offer abandonment deals that provide customers with a small discount if they complete their orders.
9. Loyalty offer notice (‘act now to claim rewards’)
Here’s an example of a message about earned customer rewards:
- You earned 10 points with your last order. Click here to see the rewards you qualify for: Onlineshop.com/rewards
After customers earn points or go a while without redeeming them, a message like this can make them aware of their eligible rewards. A compelling message will include information about the rewards they’ve earned and where they can go to redeem rewards and offers.
10. Birthday coupon
Here’s an example of a birthday reward text:
- Happy birthday! To celebrate, place an order today and use code BIRTHDAY22 at checkout to receive 20% off your purchase: Onlineshop.com/happybirthday
Similar messages can be used to celebrate any event, such as the anniversary of a customer joining the company loyalty program or opening an account.
11. Holiday promotional event
Here’s an example of a text promoting a holiday event:
- Father’s Day Sales Event: From now until Sunday, get 20% off items from our Father’s Day catalog. Onlineshop.com/fathersday
Texts like these can make customers aware of holiday events and move them toward purchasing by offering time-limited discounts. Like the other sales-related marketing message examples in this section, it includes a CTA and a descriptive link.
Status updates and billing reminders
SMS text messages can also be a great way to keep customers in the loop about policy changes or remind them of upcoming automated payments.
12. Policy changes
Here’s an example of a simple policy-change text:
- Sasha, we’ve updated our policies. Click here to learn more.
Whenever you need to inform customers about policy changes, a quick text like this can be an effective option. Including additional, more specific information about the policy change may also be helpful.
13. Billing reminders
Here’s an example of a text billing reminder:
- Your balance of $75 will be charged to your linked credit card on Jan. 1, 2022. View your bill online by clicking here.
This message alerts customers to an upcoming payment, includes a payment date and method, and provides a link to their online billing statement. A similar format can be used to let customers know that a scheduled payment was completed successfully.
New items, product updates and restocks
This type of marketing text keeps customers informed about products they care about.
14. New product or product restock
Here’s an example of a product alert:
- Just in! Our Summer Basics line will get you ready to spend time in the sun. Click here to check out our newest line of T-shirts, tanks, shorts and exercise wear.
Advertising new products to relevant audiences is a great way to keep customers in the loop. A simple text like this, including a brand or line name, product details, and a link to the new product listing, is a great way to introduce customers to a new product or inform them of a product restock.
15. Low or limited stock
Here’s an example of a text warning about a fast-selling product:
- Selling fast! We’re almost out of our bestselling Christmas candles. Once they’re gone, we won’t be restocking these until next year, so act now to get yours.
Informing customers of seasonal items, limited runs or products that are selling out faster than you can order them is a great way to provide a sense of urgency that may influence recipients to make a purchase.
Building your campaign with the best SMS marketing examples
Whether you want to welcome a customer, promote an event or confirm an appointment, a quick text message can be an invaluable marketing tool. The best text message marketing services provide a powerful and flexible communication channel for businesses, taking the guesswork out of message timing and list maintenance.
Technology like chatbots can help you get even more out of text messaging. With chatbots, your customers can ask questions, learn more about your business, and track information related to their orders without the extra step of contacting your customer support team.