Converting visitors into loyal customers sometimes requires a little push from your side. No matter how good your product is, or how well your online platforms function, you have to turn every marketing channel to your advantage.
Short message service marketing – or SMS marketing as we call it, is exactly the kind of marketing channel that will help you absorb your users’ attention in this bustling online world.
Let’s dive into the tips and tricks that make SMS Marketing actually work. Whichever forms of SMS marketing you start getting involved in, your three core goals will be:
- Increase brand awareness
- Boost engagement
- Generate sales
You may ask – aren’t those the same standard goals you apply to any marketing strategy? Of course, they are. But SMS marketing for eCommerce is unique because the goal acquisition is instant, the effort you put in is minimal and the cost is highly effective for ROI.
There are dozens of reasons for you to send out an SMS campaign (and creativity will always be rewarded) but here are a few of the most common reasons for short messages:
- Coupon offers
- Abandoned cart reminders
- Sales and promotions
- Festive season updates
- New product or inventory update announcements
- Notifications (for example delivery progress)
- Customer feedback
Plenty of strategists are incorporating these same messages into their email campaigns already and might think that’s good enough. It’s not.
The average open rate for email is 20%. The average open rate for SMS is 98%. If reading that wasn’t enough to convince you, then we can add that only about 2% of links within emails actually get clicked, whereas almost 20% of links through SMS get clicked.
We’ll never tell you to stop email marketing. It has its own powerful, somewhat irreplaceable advantages but it definitely doesn’t fulfill all the same objectives as SMS marketing. It’s highly recommended that you incorporate both into your budget and strategy if you want to see a proper impact on your customer engagement.
Now that you understand what sort of communication short messages are used for, we can start looking into where exactly they are used and why, because your strategies and outcomes will most certainly differ across platforms.
SMS marketing for text messages
SMS marketing may be old-school, but to this day it’s mighty powerful.
Tech Jury is a team of software experts that test and review software and other online products to give the public transparent reviews and answers. They’ve gathered over 35 compelling facts and stats about the success of SMS marketing today, and we’d love to bring some of their findings to your attention:
- Nearly 6 billion people will be able to send and receive text messages by 2025, and a whopping 61% of the world’s population will have access to mobile internet. This means mobile marketing will continue to bring success in the future. So even with web push notification capabilities, standard text marketing will live on strong.
- The average American checks their phone approximately 47 times a day and states that they will open a text message within 15 minutes of receiving it. In fact, 90% of SMS are actually read within 3 minutes. That’s quite a lot faster than an email lingering in the dark depths of a spam folder!
- Just last year there were over 7.9 billion mobile subscriptions across the globe, which helps explain why as many as 23 billion text messages are sent each day worldwide. Yes, each day. That’s insane.
- On average it takes a person about 90 seconds to read and reply to an SMS message but over 90 minutes to respond to an email – when they eventually get to reading it, that is.
So why these facts specifically?
Well because it serves as a subtle reminder that SMS marketing holds a massive part of the market and if you’re not getting involved, you’re losing out on the potential to reach thousands – or even millions of people as you grow your business.
The reason SMS marketing has such high success rates is simply because of how time-efficient and affordable it is as a marketing channel. Things like event-related promotions and flash sales require instant delivery for lightning-fast reach and interaction. Text messages allow you to do just that with a cost that’s next to nothing.
More so, you get to spend minimal time working on the campaign itself, giving you more freedom to focus on other marketing areas that require manpower and close attention. Much like Wigzo, you can use automated text messaging capabilities to follow up with contacts, set exact delivery times, send text messages triggered by particular behaviors, or even bring customers back to an abandoned cart.
If all this sounds too good to be true, it’s because there is a very fine line between successful text marketing and downright annoying spam. To be part of the growing success of it all, there are a few rules you need to follow:
Never send a marketing SMS without valuable intent. Remember, users can see snippets of an SMS on their screen before opening it. If they can tell by the first few characters that you’re sending out nothing worthwhile, you will damage your open-rate and waste a good opportunity.
Personalize your messages to the best of your ability. Simply using a customer’s name isn’t always good enough – you should also consider elements like location, past activity, recent purchases, and other behavioral cues when tailoring your messages.
Keep it as short as possible. You have about 160 characters to work with, but that doesn’t mean you have to use all of them. It can be tricky to make such a short message compelling, so don’t rush the process – rather refine and perfect!
Getting an SMS from a business in the late hours of the evening – or even first thing in the morning – is highly invasive and can turn a customer off instantly. Consider time zones when setting up your automation and try to stick to the general marketing rule of sending out a message between 10:30 and11:30, or 14:30 and 15:30.
Of course, you already know that you can’t send a marketing SMS if the user didn’t opt-in for it. If you do, you’re breaking strict Data Protection and GDPR laws and you never want to do that! You also need to include an opt-out option in every one of your text messages. Don’t worry, opt-out works in your favor because if people choose to opt-out, you at least know that you’re keeping your database clean of uninterested subscribers. This will give you more accurate performance results and reveal where you should be placing more focus.
Now is the time to start building on and improving your rounded marketing strategy. With so many tools and functions at your fingertips, you can start immediately and grow exponentially.