Most businesses have a pretty well thought out email marketing strategy. But what if there were a powerful marketing channel that could outperform email on many metrics? Enter SMS marketing. According to Gartner, text open rates can be as high as a whopping 98%! This high open rate can be attributed primarily to the fact that most people receive fewer texts than email (meaning less content to wade through) and that texts are more interruptive. However, this also means that SMS marketing has a much higher unsubscribe rate, especially when too many messages are being sent. Research has shown that increasing the message frequency from once every 28 days to once every 14 days raises unsubscribe rates by 40%!
What this means is that SMS marketing, while highly effective, is only effective when used as a scalpel, not a bludgeon. It is best used for content that provides high value to the recipient and is also time sensitive. For example, limited time deals, personalized offers or notifications, or information that leads to an immediate call to action are great examples of proper messages. Once you have determined your content and the frequency of your messages, you need to be sure those messages get delivered as intended.
As mentioned, SMS is a highly effective but interruptive channel. This means that a tighter segmentation is needed to ensure the highest relevance for the recipient. Tailoring your message to a very specific audience will increase deliverability and conversion rates. With SMS marketing, it is more effective to send out multiple smaller campaigns rather than one large campaign. If it is necessary to reach a wider audience, consider using email instead.
Carriers are very sensitive to being perceived as spammy. Even though more than 75% of consumers are typically willing to receive marketing texts, they are not willing to be bombarded at the same frequency or saturation as email. In order to maximize the deliverability of a specific text, avoid overuse of obvious marketing words such as “on sale”, ”discount”, “promotional offer”, etc. Focus your message on a value add.
Carriers take the safety of their consumers seriously, and there is a high risk when a SMS being sent includes URLs. It is difficult to make sure that these are safe to click through, and so carriers will usually err on the side of safety. If you must send out URLs with your SMS marketing, strongly consider paying for short codes instead.
As laws vary from country to country, take the time to learn what is allowed in your target audience. Carriers do not want to facilitate illegal activities so make sure that the offering is legal in all localities receiving your message. Be aware of opt-in only countries and always ensure your terms and conditions are up to date and easy to find on your website.
In an increasingly connected world, make sure you are getting through the clutter and reaching your customers with SMS marketing.
Discover more some tried-and-true tools and best practices to help you supercharge your marketing here.
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