Text messaging, also known as SMS (Short Message Service), is an effective way for businesses to communicate with customers. It allows for personal, direct, and immediate communication, which can be especially useful for time-sensitive information or promotions. Text messaging also has a high open rate, with 98% of text messages being read within the first three minutes of being received. SMS marketing platforms can help you see high ROI from this pillar of your overall marketing strategy.
How Do I Market Through Text Messages?
Target a Specific Audience
When it comes to marketing, the more you know about your audience and the more specific your target segments are, the better your results will be. Just like how your Facebook or LinkedIn ads allow you to reach people based on their location, age, job descriptions, industry, interests, and more, the most successful text message marketing is tailored to a specific group of people.
SMS marketing is a great way to reach your customers where they are – on their phones. By sending targeted messages, you can build stronger connections with your audience and have more meaningful interactions with potential customers. This requires some research, but it’s an essential step if you want your campaign to be successful.
Think strategically. If you’re randomly texting people out of the blue, and they’ve never heard of your company, you’re like to get your texts reported as spam, blocked, or an immediate STOP to opt-out. But if you’re interacting with a specific audience, one that is familiar with your brand and that you’ve targeted knowledgably, text messages provide an exciting way to be sure you’re getting through.
Text message marketing can be a powerful tool for staying in touch with your customers, but it’s important to do it in the right way. First, it’s crucial to get permission from customers before sending any text messages to comply with FCC regulations.
What Does the FCC Have to Do With It?
Before sending text messages to your customers, follow the rules set by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). This includes getting permission from your customers before sending them any text messages.
The TCPA (The Telephone Consumer Protection Act) is in place to protect consumers from unwanted mass text messages, and it specifies how businesses can send bulk messages to customers. The key is to make sure you have written consent from every customer before sending them any text messages.
It’s not as bad as it sounds, either. By following these laws, you help yourself because you can ensure you are sending messages to people who are interested in receiving them and not bothering those who are not. That second category is the group likely to report you as spam or bad-mouth you on social media for bothering them.
How SMS Marketing Platforms Can Help
Businesses can work with SMS marketing platforms like Anthem Software to compile databases, navigate legal issues, and even deal with the actual text transmissions in bulk. You can also get marketing automation services and create campaigns with metrics you can actually track. Your SMS marketing platform can help you navigate the TCPA so you don’t have to worry about any legal issues.
Keep Your Messages On Point
When sending text messages to your contacts, it’s best to keep them short, simple, and to the point. This way, your recipients will be more likely to read your message, and they’ll be less likely to opt out of receiving future messages.
It’s also important to keep in mind that SMS messages have a character limit, so it’s essential to be clear and concise. Make sure to grab their attention with an engaging opening, communicate your message, and include a call to action: but do this concisely and without a lot of fluff.
Be Sensitive to Audience Needs
Make sure your customers don’t feel overwhelmed by the number of messages they receive or trapped in a subscription they didn’t sign up for. Be mindful of when you schedule your text messages. Sending messages at random hours may come across as unprofessional.
Send messages during regular business hours and be upfront with customers about what they can expect from your text message program. This way, customers will be less likely to feel resentful towards your SMS advertising and less likely to unsubscribe by replying with “STOP.”
Speaking of unsubscribing, be sure to provide a way to do that and make it clear that it’s simple to opt out at any time. This allows the recipients to feel like they aren’t trapped, which makes them more likely to agree to sign up in the first place.
Add Real Value
Make sure the messages you send are relevant and add value to the customer’s experience with your brand. Think about what kind of messages your audience would appreciate, and send them things like coupons, promotions, and sneak peeks that they’ll be excited to receive.
Think about how you can communicate with your customers: it should be in a way that is consistent with the kind of communication they have with their friends and social circles. That’s what they expect from texts. By providing useful information in addition to promotional offers, you can create a sense of anticipation and surprise and make sure that what you offer is consistent with what they might get from their peers. That’s how you keep the line open.
Don’t Overwhelm Them
We’ve all got that friend or family member who sends so many long, boring texts that we mute the conversation or only check it once in a while to avoid being overwhelmed. For your marketing campaign, customers won’t just “mute” you: they’ll opt out entirely if you overwhelm or aggravate them.
Unlike billboards or social media advertisements, or even emails, text messages can’t so easily be ignored, so if customers receive too many messages from your business, they will get frustrated and opt-out. Create a text message marketing campaign that is limited in scope.
Only send messages when they are necessary, and limit the number of messages you send to a specific number of customers. This way, you’ll be able to keep your audience engaged without overwhelming them with too many messages.
Make It Part of a Larger Campaign
Text messaging should be part of a larger marketing strategy. Before starting a text messaging campaign, it’s essential to have a plan on how it will fit in with your other marketing efforts and reach new customers. Text messaging may not be appropriate for every marketing situation.
Consider using text messaging for things like delivery updates, follow-up messages after downloading a mobile app or program, purchase receipts, or exclusive discounts. Text message marketing is only effective when you have an audience that prefers this form of communication.
Text messages also come across as more personal than email, so if you’re reaching out to someone who is unfamiliar with your brand, it might be considered spam. When your audience is familiar with your company or products, they are more likely to appreciate and engage with content sent via text message.
How This All Works
Text message marketing is a way to communicate with your customers through SMS messages on their mobile devices. This type of digital marketing strategy allows you to connect with your customers on a more personal level by sending them information about your business, sales, promotions, or other relevant updates.
You can send bulk messages to a group of customers or specific segments of your audience or even personalize the experience by sending individualized messages. This approach allows you to reach your customers directly on their phones, bypassing other marketing channels such as social media ads or email campaigns.
To make text message marketing work, you’ll need a database that includes your customers’ names, phone numbers, and other information, such as their geographic location, customer categories, and interests. This information helps you track the sales process and tailor your messages to your audience.
Get SMS Marketing Platforms to Help
If all this seems overwhelming to plan and execute, that’s because there really is a lot that goes into a successful text message campaign. But this isn’t something you can just skip. Many companies are already using text messaging as part of their sales or service process, and it’s likely that more will follow in the future. If you want to stay competitive, especially if you are a business that sells directly to consumers, it’s a good idea to explore how text messaging can be integrated into your business. By doing so, you can boost your sales by keeping appointments organized and on schedule.
Here at Anthem, we can help you understand how text messaging can benefit your business. We’ll work with you to identify areas in your sales or service process where text messaging can help increase your closing rate. Even if you haven’t had a strategy for text messaging before and just want to improve efficiency or communication with your customers, we can help with that as well!
Text messaging can be a great strategy, and we can help. Contact us at Anthem Software today and find out how we can help your business grow.