Author: Elena Arretche, Product Marketer, PhoneIQ
Are you looking to generate leads and gain extra business for your organization? SMS texting could be the way to go.
To demonstrate the point, here are a few startling statistics on how SMS Business Texting can take companies to new heights.
- 88% of people prefer to receive appointment scheduling texts from businesses
- 77% of people like to use text messages to access customer service
- 70% of people say texting is the fastest way to reach them
- 67% of businesses have recently started texting to get faster responses.
Originally, texting was used as a way for friends and family to communicate without the need for a long and drawn-out conversation. Still today, SMS texts are typically used for short and precise instructions that can be read on the go. They contain little emotional impact and avoid long elaborate sentences.
More recently, SMS texts have been used by doctors and dentists to confirm appointments, a practice that has now become commonplace. They serve as good reminders for patients to attend appointments ahead of time. SMS texts have evolved to where we are today with businesses sending out real-time information on the latest products, details of discounted deals straight to your phone, and other marketing messages that can be consumed at leisure without having to answer phone calls.
SMS texts are immediate and simple to read, with direct messages that are to the point. That’s why businesses are eager to use SMS texting as a way to increase brand awareness and communicate directly with their customer base.
How to improve your business SMS texting
1. Be concise, be relevant, be on time, and be believable.
If you want to successfully implement SMS text marketing and messaging for your business, you need to be disciplined and plan your campaigns ahead of time. Set out a clear strategy on how to keep your text messages short, clear and relevant, so you don’t come across as a spammer.
2. Personalize your SMS messages
Personalizing your messages makes them more appealing than using a generic mass market message. You can also try to make the messages fun and engaging to stand out from your competition.
For example, if you’re introducing your newest product, you can make them "an offer they can’t refuse" (we hope you’re imagining Marlon Brando saying that line!).
Make sure that whatever you’re offering speaks to them personally. Examples could include: wishing them a happy birthday, using their first name, mentioning items that they left in their shopping basket, or including items they have shown interest in previously.
3. Timing is key
Sending an SMS text at midnight or during the early hours when everyone is bed can be a little annoying, especially for people who have forgotten to put their phone on silent! When planning an SMS campaign, timing is key to ensure you get the maximum number of eyes on your key messages.
The majority of people commute to work between the hours of 7.30am and 8.45am and return between 5.30pm and 6.30pm. It’s a good idea to send out your messages to them before work, or just before they get home. For people who commute on public transport, checking their phones helps them to pass the time, so you’re likely to get more eyes on your message.Weekends may also be a good time to send SMS texts, as customers have more opportunity to check out your business website and services during their leisure time.
Whatever you decide, here’s an amazing statistic on how effective the reach of SMS Text marketing can be:
Over 90% of SMS Text messages are seen and read within 3 minutes of being sent, with a 99% open rate overall. Compare this to typical business email marketing open rates of 21% and you can see how effective SMS texting can be.
4. Don’t be pushy
Once you have decided on your key messages, always make sure to provide an opt-out option so you don’t lose potential customers.
Give clear instructions on how to opt out. You can give the customer the option to stop receiving all communications, or better yet – offer a pause or reduction in the amount of SMS texts they get from your business. Make sure not to retarget people who have already opted out, whatever you do, as this can do some serious damage to your business reputation.
Some other things to avoid are giving too much information and including details of irrelevant products and services. This kind of thing can be super-annoying to some folk. You don’t want lots of angry customers venting their anger on social media and calling you a spammer.
5. Be consistent
SMS Text marketing can be an excellent brand builder, but only if the marketing is consistent and engaging.
Sending out promotional texts at key times of the year, or just after pay day at the end of the month, can reap huge rewards. For instance, key sale events like Black Friday and Valentine's Day can provide big boosts for your brand when done right. Most customers are looking for deals during those key times, so SMS texts can help to win repeat business, as well as attract new customers.
Whatever the reason for sending them a message, always make sure to have a call to action for them to request more information, visit, subscribe, or most importantly – to buy something from you.