Text message marketing is anything but fringe when it comes to driving business. In fact, Mshopper notes that successful SMS marketing campaigns have huge potential, with engagement rates reaching eight times the level of typical email campaigns. A number of retailers, meanwhile, have managed conversion rates as high as 23 percent. Given the brevity and immediate delivery of SMS marketing, the campaign strategy can be very economical and useful to businesses looking to build their client base. But SMS campaigns also deliver marketing materials to a rather personal virtual space: The consumer’s text inbox. As a result, it’s important to respect this access while making the best use of your SMS opportunities.
Here are four different ways to use SMS marketing to help grow your business:
1. Let Consumers Know When They’re Opting In
To get consumers into an SMS messaging campaign, let them know when they are enrolling themselves. This is known as opting in, and it can be done in a variety of ways, such as by checking a box during online registration or sending a text message as a way of entering a sweepstakes. Gather SMS campaign numbers ethically to keep your relationship with customers strong. As long as you’ve provided them the opportunity to opt in with their permission, you can always point back to that moment in time. And if customers are still unhappy with the texts they’re receiving, you can help them opt out with ease.
2. Choosing Your Marketing Content
With a campaign in place, consider how you will best utilize SMS messages with substantial mobile security. Promo codes have long been a popular method of promotion — consumers can receive these codes and enter them online to enjoy savings or even freebies offered by your business. Similarly, you can include short hyperlinks to websites — since many SMS subscribers will own smartphones capable of visiting a web page, this can quickly drive mobile phone traffic to a marketing-optimized landing page, according to JA.TXT.
You can even use SMS messages to drive Facebook likes and promote downloads of your mobile app. And don’t forget the simplicity of just using text messages to deliver information, whether it’s an upcoming retail catalog or an ongoing sale.
3. Analyzing SMS Performance
Like any other digital campaign, SMS presents the opportunity for in-depth mobile analysis. Analytics tools can help you identify what’s working and what isn’t, and often to a degree much greater than simply eyeballing the stats. You can plug performance data from your SMS campaigns into a mobile device management solution, where mobile data can be analyzed to offer guidance on how you might improve your current efforts.
4. Always Provide an Option to Opt-Out
Just as it’s important to let consumers know when they’re opting in to an SMS campaign, it’s wise to provide a convenient path to unsubscribe. A common tactic is for businesses to attach onto the end of each message a line to the effect of “To stop receiving these messages, reply ‘STOP.’” It might be tempting to make things a little tougher in hopes of curbing lost subscribers, but in the end you’ll only build up bad will among your consumer base, possibly even gaining a reputation as a spammer.
Have you used SMS marketing in a different way? I’d love to hear it!