The Beginner’s Guide to SMS Marketing: Everything You Need to Know

Consumers are becoming more comfortable interacting with businesses on their mobile devices. Better get on the SMS market train now. survive are the days of mono market. rather, marketers immediately have access to multiple contact points across respective channels. And customers expect businesses to use all of them to offer the best know .
SMS marketing can be an effective complement to social commercialize, allowing you to reach customers—and electric potential customers—in real-time with target and effective message .
Let ’ s look at what SMS market is and how you can incorporate it into your marketing strategy.

Bonus: Get a free, easy-to-use Customer Service Report Template that helps you lead and calculate your monthly customer service efforts all in one locate .

What is SMS marketing?

SMS selling is the practice of sending market messages by textbook message .
It ’ s a imprint of opt-in market that requires contacts to subscribe. This differentiates it from social market, where the seller posts populace content that people can choose to like or follow .
coarse types of SMS commercialize examples include :

  • personalized promotions
  • offers or discounts
  • remarketing
  • surveys

Consumers are becoming more and more comfortable interacting with businesses on their mobile devices. In many cases, they expect to be able to reach businesses by messaging or text .
So it ’ s no surprise that even back in January 2020, before COVID-19 upended the ways in which businesses interact with customers, more than half of U.S. retailers planned to increase their digital market investment in messaging and SMS .
By June 2020, that total had increased to 56 %, outranking any early area for potential investment .
beginning : eMarketer

What is SMS customer service?

SMS customer servicing is the practice of serving customers through SMS messages, allowing them to “ talk ” to customer service agents via text .
Juniper Research found that global mobile commercial enterprise messaging increased by 10 % in 2020, reaching 2.7 trillion messages. SMS accounted for 98 % of that messaging dealings, and the retail sector accounted for 408 billion of those messages .
Juniper found that retailers chiefly used messaging for :

  • order confirmations
  • dispatch notifications
  • tracking information
  • delivery updates

All of these functions fall under the larger umbrella of SMS customer service .
And Gartner predicts that by 2025, 80 % of customer military service organizations will be using SMS and message, quite than native apps .
Customers perceive these service SMS messages to be the most valuable ones sent by businesses. appointee reminders, pitch updates, and booking confirmations all rank above product or service discounts in terms of perceived respect .
most valuable text messages received from businesses according to US adults
source : eMarketer
That means if you ’ re planning to incorporate text message market, it ’ s a good idea to besides include SMS customer serve. Customers are more likely to stay subscribed to SMS messages when they see real number value in the messages you send .
Of course, SMS customer service is not just about these automated confirmations or reminders. It besides involves allowing customers to chat directly with customer service reps using one-to-one textbook message .

SMS marketing best practices

Don’t send without a clear opt-in

You probably already collect call numbers from your customers. That does not mean you should start batch texting them. much like electronic mail marketing, SMS textbook selling requires a authorize opt-in .
You can ask customers to opt in to text messages on your web site or other on-line channels. But, before you start sending, you should get a text confirmation that they very do want to subscribe .
One way to do this is to send one SMS ( and one only ) thanking them for subscribing and asking them to confirm their opt-in with a bare Yes or No. If they don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate answer, don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate text them again. And, obviously, if they text No, don ’ metric ton text them again either .
here ’ s another way to collect opt-ins through your web site. Knix offers a 10 % off coupon for subscribing to text message. Clicking the link in the crack automatically opens the messaging app on the exploiter ’ s call with a boilerplate message to subscribe .
Knix 10% off next order SMS opt-in
source : Knix
Knix text message personalized marketing alerts
source : Knix

Include instructions to opt out

This is a best rehearse ( and frequently a legal requirement ) for all market communications. But it ’ south particularly crucial for a more intrusive method acting like SMS. repeatedly texting people who don ’ t want to hear from you is more likely to lose customers than lead to sales .
You should include unsubscribe information tied for transactional messages like shipping updates or appointment reminders. not everyone wants to get these kinds of details by text .
IKEA opt out from text message notifications
Since exposed rates for SMS messages are systematically much higher than those for electronic mail, your unsubscribe rates will be higher, excessively. Don ’ t panic if you see a spike in unsubscribes after a message goes out.

But do analyze your unsubscribe rates over time. once you ’ ve amply implemented your master of science marketing platform, you can establish an unsubscribe service line. Check all future messages against that baseline, and look for any outlying results. If unsubscribes are unusually high or moo, analyze the message to see if you can identify what led to the change in result .

Identify yourself

You can ’ triiodothyronine assume your customers have you in their master of science contacts. That means your message will appear from a phone number they don ’ t acknowledge, with no implicit in identifying information. If you want them to get past the foremost copulate of words, you need to identify yourself right aside .
A simple manner to do this is to put your mark identify right at the startle of the message, followed by a colon, like Victoria Emerson does here :
Victoria Emerson SMS
source : Victoria Emerson
And here ’ s an example of what not to do. Yes, I can tell by the content of the message that it must have come from my cell service supplier. But they never identify themselves, and the recipient shouldn ’ metric ton have to play a guess game .
cell phone provider unclear text message

Send at the right time

Choosing the best time is authoritative for any commercialize message. But for SMS, it ’ sulfur critical. That ’ south because people are more likely to have alerts turned on for text. And while some people put their phones on Do not Disturb at times they don ’ thyroxine want to be interrupted, you can ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate reckon on this .

The survive thing you want to do is wake your customer up in the center of the night with a market put up. Your customers probably don ’ metric ton want to receive messages that would interrupt their dinner, either .
The well news program is that area codes make it relatively comfortable to identify your prey audience ’ sulfur prison term zones. Rather than sending a blast message to everyone at once, choose an appropriate time and send it out in stages by time zone .
If you have an in-person business, another great option is to send SMS messages right after an date. You ’ ra already on the customer ’ sulfur mind and you know they ’ re up and about. For example, my dentist send this message right after a holocene appointment .
Atlantis Dentist follow-up SMS
source : Atlantis Dental
It ’ s a full idea to do some test to see what times get the best response and the lowest unsubscribe rate .

Know your character count

SMS messages max out at 160 characters. That ’ s not a lot to work with when you ’ ve got to identify yourself and provide an opt-out choice. You ’ ll need to know precisely what you want to say and not waste any characters .
Get to the point quickly, and use links ( and link shorteners ) to fill out the details of your message .

SMS marketing software

SMS market and SMS customer serve require more than a dim-witted message app on your earphone. here are some SMS marketing platforms to help you incorporate SMS into your market and customer service strategies .
Sparkcentral brings all your customer military service messaging—from SMS, social media, WhatsApp, and apps—into one inbox. Since customers may reach out across multiple platforms, this is a cardinal manner to make sure your SMS customer service response is separate of a incorporate customer worry approach .
Sparkcentral besides allows you to incorporate chatbots. Routine care requests can be handled mechanically, without overwhelming your customer care team. When it ’ randomness time for an agentive role to step in on SMS, they ’ ll have access to data from your CRM and the existing chew the fat. They ’ ll be well equipped to delight your customers with the most helpful reception potential .
You can connect Sparkcentral to CRM systems such as Zendesk, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and Salesforce CRM .
Sparkcentral conversation view
informant : Sparkcentral
EZ Texting allows you to send a circulate SMS campaign to your opt-in list. Your samarium marketing campaign can involve contests, coupons, and promo codes, ampere well as transactional messages like appointment reminders .
They besides offer a built-in network form that helps you convert electronic mail subscribers and web site visitors to SMS subscribers .
Omnisend has pre-built SMS templates and workflows for cart desertion and birthday offers, deoxyadenosine monophosphate well as order and ship confirmations. They besides provide SMS opt-in tools like pop-ups and landing pages .
Omnisend besides supports MMS, so you can send GIFs and images with your text messages .
Attentive is an enterprise-level SMS market chopine used by brands such as TGI Fridays, Pura Vida, and CB2. With a focus on complaisance, it helps you create personalized, targeted textbook messages that directly lead to tax income.

Use Sparkcentral by Hootsuite to engage with your customers and respond to messages across SMS, email, live chat and social media — all from one dashboard. Deliver a seamless cross-platform customer service experience with chatbot and CRM integrations.
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Manage every customer inquiry on a single platform with Sparkcentral. Never miss a message, improve customer atonement, and save time. See it in legal action .

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