SMS Marketing: The Do’s and Don’ts

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SMS represents an important white space in marketing.

Are you aware that 90% of text messages are read within three minutes of receipt, and 98% of text messages are read in general versus only 24% of emails? The rate of interaction of all other marketing mediums combined doesn’t even come close. 

SMS messaging is not just about sending out a generic marketing message — there are a variety of innovative ways in which companies use SMS, such as providing discounts and deals, delivering customer service or important notifications, and sending appointment reminders.

Keep it Brief

Brevity is your best new friend. Standard SMS has a limit of 160 characters; so being succinct and brief matters. Keep your text messages short and descriptive, and make your purpose clear.

As it is with any marketing medium, without connecting to a call to action, you’ll limit your results. Here’s the problem: raw SMS links are long, and ugly….consuming valuable character space. That’s why Txtra, includes a link shortener feature to help solve that challenge. This helps our users save space when you need to add a link. 

What about using some shorthand SMS lingo…like CUL8R, or HowRU? Please don’t do that! It’s the reputation of your business at stake, so ensure your message in a way that represents that personality and brand you’ve worked so hard to establish for your business. 

Make It Personal

Have you ever received a text message from a number that didn’t identify themselves or seemed irrelevant to you? If so, you’ve likely completely ignored it or even unsubscribed. When you don’t identify your business as the sender or send something of relevance to your subscribers, you risk losing that opportunity of engagement.  

Be sure to announce your business by including your company name in every SMS you send. Your goal is to develop a relationship and familiarity.

Txtra gives the ability to personalize all text messages with the subscribers’ names, birthdays, zip codes, and more. Using these personalization features will go a long way in improving the effectiveness of your text message marketing efforts. 

Include a Strong Call to Action

Each message goes out with intent. In SMS, this translates into a text line requesting a corresponding step from a client. An SMS call to action usually asks the recipients to use a coupon code for their next purchase, encourages them to share something with friends or even simply to answer YES to confirm their attendance at your event. Whatever the intended intent, make your CTA the obvious to recognize and simple for your subscribers to do.

Your call to action should be clear and to-the-point. Unclear, complicated texts won’t help with anything.  

Tell Them How to Opt-Out

To stay compliant with CTIA rules and to provide the right user experience, its critical that you explain to your users exactly how to opt-out of receiving messages from your business. After all, why would you want to waste your time and money advertising to someone who simply isn’t interested? Make it clear to your SMS receivers that they can opt-out of your SMS campaign at any time. Something as simple as “STOP to unsubscribe” does the trick. 

Txtra includes fully editable and automatic opt-out functionality. 

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