Mobile apps and social media sites are simply the most dominant trends in the business world when it comes to customer engagement. While there is no denying the changing horizon, old techniques for engaging customers, such as SMS marketing, are still relevant today.
As you may already know, texting is one of the most reliable and cost-effective means of communication. Businesses, both big and small, leverage SMS in their marketing plans. SMS marketing helps companies to connect with customers, get their feedback, and more.
SMS marketing still works better than many other marketing channels. The high open rate, affordable and simple process, and the opportunity to establish personalized relations with customers are just a few of the many reasons why SMS is still a popular marketing tool.
Top Reasons SMS is a Smart Marketing Tool
Text marketing is a relatively old technique compared to modern-day branding tools. Despite this, SMS is still an integral part of many businesses in the marketing world. The first-ever SMS was delivered in 1992, and we haven't stopped sending messages since. Now, you can send and receive hundreds of SMS messages daily, proving that while this technology may be older, it's more reliable than ever.
While several messaging apps have gained immense popularity recently, SMS is still the most used messaging medium. This is due to some key aspects of SMS that continue to make it relevant, even in the quickly evolving business world. Keep reading to explore these reasons and find out how you can continue to benefit from SMS.
1. Easy and Simple
SMS is one of the easiest ways to communicate with friends, family, and especially your customers. From five-year-olds to the oldest member of the family, everyone knows how to send and read a text message. This makes text marketing ideal, since people from all age groups can either receive your marketing messages or send them, in the case of your employees.
The standard character length for an SMS is 160 characters. Here your creative skills come into play. It's up to you how smartly you can create a persuasive message within the limited character count. Consider using universally recognizable emojis and abbreviations if you need some help fitting your message within the character count.
From local startups to global organizations, every business uses text marketing to engage customers in multiple ways. SMS marketing can be used to send out contests and sweepstakes, request customer feedback via surveys, let customers make appointments, and more.
Though SMS marketing is often customizable depending on the provider, it can be further personalized for customers depending on whether brands are using a short code or long code. Short codes are great for mass messaging, while long codes are better for smaller-scale communication. Whichever type of code you choose, just make sure to follow the guidelines enforced by the FCC.
Texting gains the customers' attention more quickly than any other marketing tool. It swiftly outperforms the modern digital marketing channels. SMS marketing leads to higher customer engagement rates and gives you the freedom to promote your brand even if you have limited financial resources.
SMS is one of the most cost-effective marketing mediums, and truly offers businesses the most bang for their buck. Many companies incorporate SMS or texting into their marketing strategy to cut their operational costs. Prices vary whether you choose a short code or long code, but both are budget-friendly and still allow you to send the same quality of promotional content to subscribers.
Keep in mind, there are often still setup and provisioning fees. However, these costs are still low compared to the cost of paid promotional spots, such as on social media or TV. SMS also has a higher ROI than other mediums, while other advertising strategies (like printing pamphlets) have higher costs and lower engagement rates. With text marketing, you can make an instant impact on a mass audience.
3. High Response Rates
Did you know that 89% of people always have their smartphone within arm's reach, and nearly half said it's something they couldn't live without? People carry their phones around all day long, so it's no surprise that they almost always check new messages and notifications immediately. It's also not news that SMS has a whopping open rate of 98%, the highest open rate compared to any other marketing medium.
Think about it this way: How many times do you actually stop to read a flyer in the mall or on the street? How often do you check the junk or spam folder in your email account? Instead of letting your marketing materials languish in overcrowded inboxes, take advantage of SMS messaging.
SMS is the most responsive marketing tool. Research has found that text messages are highly visible, with a read rate of nearly 100%, even for marketing messages. Most users check new messages within five minutes of receiving them, and over three-quarters respond to text in ten minutes or less. Not to mention, the conversation of SMS marketing is 45%. These statistics clearly show why SMS marketing is still so prevalent and powerful.
4. Targeted Business Content
Customer engagement and customer retention are two important factors that make a brand successful. You cannot achieve these objectives unless you know your target market, their needs, and their wants. SMS is not only useful as a branding tool, it also helps businesses generate quality leads and attract more customers.
With scalable SMS platforms, more brands than ever before are incorporating SMS marketing into their business strategies to target potential customers. Both small and large businesses alike can easily create targeted content to draw more people into their customer base and drive sales.
However, there are some caveats to this. Brands that send too many messages or messages that are irrelevant fail to please customers, resulting in increased opt-out rates. Successful organizations schedule their promotional content and make sure their messages always hold value for customers. Research suggests that sending two to four texts per month strikes the best balance.
5. A Bridge Between Brands and Customers
SMS messaging creates an instant bridge between brands and customers. The "short and sweet" format of SMS messages is also appreciated, as today's customers have no time (or patience) or read lengthy paragraphs about a company or their current promotions. SMS messages not only establish a connection with consumers, their very structure also strengthens this connection and increases brand loyalty.
A mobile screen is often the first thing that many people look at in the morning, and this presents a valuable opportunity for businesses. If your message content is engaging and your offers are valuable, consumers are sure to take advantage of the promotion. Make sure to cater to the needs of your customers, and in turn they'll increase your brand influence and profit margins.
Remember that you need prior consent via an opt-in program to send messages to consumers. But once you have permission, the possibilities that SMS marketing afford your business are nearly limitless. You can send appointment alerts, order tracking updates, and even 'thank you' messages.
We've discussed just a few of the reasons why SMS marketing is one of the most effective branding strategies. There are still many other ideas that brands use to leverage the power of SMS marketing. Don't fall behind—incorporate SMS marketing into your business today and start enjoying its many benefits.