SMS Marketing: Essential Guide For Beginners

SMS marketing or text marketing is a form of direct mobile marketing that uses text messaging campaigns to promote products or services.

SMS marketing can be an effective way to reach out to customers and promote your product or service.

However, there are a few things you should keep in mind before you start using this type of marketing.

In this blog post, we will explore everything you need to know about text marketing, from how to get started to what to avoid.

What Are SMS Messages?

SMS stands for "short message service."

It is a form of communication that allows users to send and receive short text messages on their mobile phones.

They are often used for sending reminders, alerts, or notifications, as well as for staying in touch with friends and family.

SMS messages are sent through a cellular network and require a mobile phone with a SIM card to be able to send and receive them.

What is SMS marketing?

Sms marketing is a form of marketing that uses text messages to send promotional or transactional sms messages to customers.

It can be used to promote special offers, CTAs, or reminders and can be an effective way to reach and engage your target audience.

Types of SMS Marketing Messages

Here are the four types of SMS marketing messages with SMS marketing examples:

1. Promotional SMS Messages:

Text message promotions are messages that promote your product or service.

They can include discounts, special offers, or new product information.

Here is a promotional message example:

"Hi [Name], we're having a flash sale on our popular [Product] today only!

Get 20% off with code FLASH SALE.

Hurry, the offer ends at midnight. [Your Company]"

In this example, the message is personalized with the recipient's name, includes information about the sale and the discount code, and includes the sender's company name.

The message is also urgent and time-limited, which can help to create a sense of urgency and encourage the recipient to take action.

2. Transactional messages

These are messages that provide information about a transaction, such as a purchase confirmation or shipping update.

Here is an example of a transactional marketing message:

"Hello [Name], your order [Order Number] has been shipped and is on its way!

You can track your order using the following link: [Tracking Link].

Thank you for choosing [Your Company] for your [Product] needs. [Your Company]"

In this sms marketing example, the message is personalized with the recipient's name and order number includes a tracking link, and includes the sender's company name.

The message is also focused on providing information and updates related to the recipient's order, which can help to improve customer satisfaction and trust.

3. Alerts

These are time-sensitive messages that notify customers of important updates, such as a change in store hours or a severe weather warning.

Here is an example of an sms alert message:

"Attention [Name], we have detected unusual activity on your [Account Type] account.

For your security, please call us immediately at [Phone Number] to verify your account.

Thank you, [Your Company]"

In this example, the message is personalized with the recipient's name and account type, includes a call-to-action and a phone number, and includes the sender's company name.

The message is also urgent and important, as it relates to the security of the recipient's account.

This can help to grab the recipient's attention and encourage them to take the necessary action.

4. Customer service

These are messages that provide customer support, such as a password reset link or notifications of a new warranty policy.

Here is an SMS marketing example for a customer service message:

"Hello [Name], we're sorry to hear that you're experiencing an issue with your [Product].

Please reply to this message with your order number and a brief description of the issue, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Thank you for choosing [Your Company]."

In this example, the message is personalized with the recipient's name and product, includes a call-to-action and a request for information, and includes the sender's company name.

The message is also focused on providing support and assistance to the recipient, which can help to improve customer satisfaction and loyalty.

How to Build an SMS Marketing Strategy

To build an SMS marketing strategy, you should first determine your goals and objectives.

For example: do you want to increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, or promote a new product or service?

Once you have identified your goals, you can start thinking about how SMS can help you achieve them.

Here are some steps to consider when building your SMS marketing strategies:

1. Choose the right SMS marketing platform

There are many SMS marketing platforms available, so it's important to choose one that meets your needs.

Look for a platform that offers features like customizable templates, automation, and analytics.

2. Segment your audience

SMS marketing is most effective when it is targeted and personalized.

To ensure that your messages are relevant to your audience, you should segment them based on factors like demographics, location, interests, and purchase history.

3. Create compelling content

The success of your SMS marketing campaign will depend on the quality of your content.

Make sure that your messages are clear, concise, and engaging.

Use actionable language and avoid using too much jargon or technical language.

4. Set up an opt-in system

To ensure that you are only sending messages to people who want to receive them, you should set up an opt-in system.

This can be as simple as asking people to text a keyword to a specific number in order to join your SMS marketing list.

5. Test and optimize

Before you launch your SMS marketing campaign, make sure to test your messages and system to ensure that everything is working properly.

Once your sms campaign is live, monitor its performance and make any necessary adjustments to improve its effectiveness.

Overall, building a text marketing strategy requires careful planning and consideration.

By following the steps outlined above, you can create a successful campaign that helps you achieve your goals and connect with your audience.

How to Build an SMS Marketing List

To build an SMS marketing list, you will need to follow these steps:

1. Choose an SMS marketing service.

The first step is to choose an SMS marketing service that meets your needs and budget.

The text marketing service will provide the tools and features you need to manage your contact list and send messages.

2. Obtain a virtual phone number.

Most SMS marketing services will allow you to use a virtual phone number to send and receive text messages.

This number will be used by your customers to opt-in to your messages and will be the sender ID that appears on their phones.

3. Create an opt-in process.

Customers must opt-in to receive text messages from you, so you will need to set up a process for them to do this. This could involve asking them to text a keyword to your virtual phone number, or using a sign-up form on your website.

4. Promote your opt-in process.

Once you have set up your opt-in process, you will need to promote it to potential customers to collect phone numbers.

This could involve advertising your virtual phone number or keyword on your website, social media, or in-store.

You could also offer an incentive, such as a discount or free product, to encourage customers to opt-in to your messages.

5. Import and manage your contact list.

As customers opt-in to receive your text messages, you will need to import their contact information into your SMS marketing program and manage your contact list.

This will involve keeping the list up-to-date, removing any inactive or unsubscribed contacts, and segmenting the list into different groups.

6. Continuously grow your list.

Building an SMS list is an ongoing process, so you will need to continuously grow your list by encouraging new customers to opt-in to your messages.

This could involve offering incentives, promoting your opt-in process, or using referral programs to encourage existing customers to refer their friends and family.

Best SMS Marketing Tools for Automation

SMS marketing tools help businesses send and manage text messages.

There are a number of different SMS marketing tools available, each with its own set of features.

To choose the right SMS marketing tool for your business, consider your needs and budget.

Some SMS marketing softwares are free, while others charge a monthly fee.

Once you've selected an SMS marketing tool, sign up for an account and start creating your text message campaigns.

Be sure to test your text campaigns before sending them to your customers.

The following are some popular SMS marketing tools:

1. BulkSMS.

BulkSMS offers a web-based platform that lets businesses send and manage bulk SMS messages. There is a free trial available, and pricing starts at $0.15 per text message sent.

2. Trumpia.

Trumpia's SMS marketing program offers a suite of features including auto-responders, segmentation, and analytics. Pricing starts at $49 per month.

3. SimpleTexting.

SimpleTexting's platform offers a variety of features including contact management, scheduling, and reporting. Prices start at $15 per month for 500 contacts.

4. EZ Texting.

EZ Texting's platform lets businesses send and manage text messages. Pricing starts at $19.99 per month for 500 contacts.

5. SlickText.

SlickText's SMS marketing platform offers a variety of features including contact management, segmentation, and reporting. Prices start at $29 per month for 500 contacts.

6. TextMagic.

TextMagic's text marketing app offers a variety of features including contact management, scheduling, and reporting. Prices start at $9.95 per month for 500 contacts.

7. CallFire.

CallFire's SMS marketing platform offers a variety of features including contact management, segmentation, and reporting. Prices start at $49 per month for 1,000 contacts.

How to Choose the Best SMS Marketing Software?

When looking for SMS marketing software, there are several key factors to consider, including:

1. Features and functionality.

The SMS marketing software you choose should have all the features and functionality you need to manage your contact list, create and send SMS messages, and track the success of your campaigns.

This could include features such as segmentation, automation, personalization, and analytics.

2. Ease of use

The SMS software you choose should be easy to use, even if you don't have a lot of technical experience.

It should have a user-friendly interface, clear instructions, and helpful support resources to help you get started.

3. Integration with other tools.

The software for sms marketing should be able to integrate with other tools and systems you are using, such as your customer relationship management (CRM) system or e-commerce platform.

This will help to streamline your marketing processes and improve the accuracy and effectiveness of your campaigns.

4. Reputation and customer support.

It's important to choose SMS marketing software from a reputable provider that has a good track record and positive customer reviews. The provider should also offer excellent customer support to help you with any questions or issues you may have.

5. Cost and value for money.

The sms marketing apps you choose should be affordable and offer good value for money. Compare different providers and packages to find the best option for your budget and needs.

If you're still curious about choosing the right text marketing software, check out our SMS Marketing Software Guide.

Best Practices For SMS Marketing

There are a number of best practices to follow when using text marketing in order to ensure that your campaigns are effective and deliver the desired results.

1. Keep your messages short and to the point.

SMS messages are limited to 160 characters, so it's important to make every word count. Keep your message clear and concise, and avoid including any unnecessary information.

2. Use an attention-grabbing headline.

Just like with any other type of marketing material, your SMS messages need to have an eye-catching headline that will grab the attention of your target audience.

3. Personalize your messages.

One way to make your SMS marketing campaigns more effective is to personalize the messages as much as possible.

Include the recipient's name in the message, and make sure that the content is relevant to their interests.

4. Timing is everything.

Another important aspect of text marketing is timing – you need to make sure that you send out your messages at a time when they're likely to be read and acted upon.

Avoid sending them out late at night or early in the morning, and consider sending them during peak periods such as lunchtime or during commute times.

5. Use call-to-actions.

Make it easy for recipients of your SMS messages to take action by including clear call-to-actions within the text.

For example, you could include a link to a landing page where they can sign up for more information, or offer a discount if they make a purchase within a certain timeframe.

6. Test, test, test.

Always test your SMS campaigns for marketing before sending them out to your entire contact list. This will help you to identify any potential problems and ensure that your messages are being delivered as intended.

Advantages and Benefits of SMS Marketing

There are several advantages to using SMS marketing:

1. High open and response rates.

SMS messages have a much higher open rate and response rate compared to other forms of marketing, such as email marketing or social media marketing. This means that your messages are more likely to be seen and acted upon by your customers.

2. Timely and relevant

SMS messages can be sent to customers at the right time and with the right information, which makes them more relevant and personalized. This can help to increase engagement and conversions.

3. Cost-effective

SMS marketing is generally more affordable than other forms of marketing, such as print or television advertising. This makes it an accessible option for businesses of all sizes.

4. Easy to measure

Text marketing platforms typically provide detailed analytics and reporting, which makes it easy to track the success of your SMS marketing campaigns and make data-driven decisions.

5. Permission-based

Text message marketing is permission-based, which means that customers have to opt-in to receive messages from you. This means that the people who receive your messages are more likely to be interested in your products or services.

Disadvantages of SMS Marketing

There are also some potential disadvantages to using SMS marketing:

1. Limited character count.

SMS text messages are limited to 160 characters, which can make it difficult to convey complex or detailed information.

2. Potential for spamming.

If not used carefully, similar to email marketing, text message marketing can also easily be perceived as spamming, which can irritate and alienate customers.

3. Potential for opt-out.

Since SMS marketing is permission-based, customers can opt out of receiving your messages at any time.

This can make it difficult to maintain a consistent flow of communication with your audience.

4. Potential for blocking.

Some mobile carriers and phone manufacturers may block or filter messages from unknown senders or sources, which can reduce the effectiveness of your SMS marketing campaigns.

5. Limited targeting options.

Compared to other forms of marketing, such as social media marketing and email marketing, SMS marketing has limited targeting options.

This can make it difficult to reach the right audience with the right message.

Conclusion

SMS marketing can be a great way to reach out to your customers and promote your business.

However, it's important to use this tool wisely and not abuse it.

Make sure to follow the tips in this guide and you'll be on your way to SMS marketing success!