It is now more than 25 years— when the first SMS was sent. Fast forward in 2018, the popularity of SMS has overridden all aspects of communication. This fame surely exceeded the expectations of the engineers who pioneered the SMS technology.
The influence of SMS has expanded to a level where researchers have found that more text messages are opened and read, overriding other communication channels. Due to the quick readability and power of prompt actions, SMSes have become the best marketing mode for the businesses.
Being an affordable marketing option, it offers an ROI which business always hunt for in all the marketing campaigns. If you are a business who is looking to leverage the enormous benefits SMS service offers, then let’s first understand the concept of SMS marketing campaign, and further delve into how you can optimise it to yield high returns.
What Does SMS Marketing Campaign Mean?
In an SMS marketing campaign, a company creates a well-crafted and catchy promotional message to capture the audience attention. Every SMS is crafted after taking into consideration the business and marketing purpose of the whole campaign.
This purpose varies from business to business according to their needs; some use it for broadcasting a seasonal offer while others might use it for sending personalised alerts or updates to the customers. Once the text message and target customer gets decided, the next step lies in sending Bulk SMS to the customers.
How to Ensure a Successful Campaign?
Before finalising and broadcasting the text message, make sure that your marketing strategy along with content gets aligned with the customer’s expectations and behaviour patterns. Guarding your marketing strategy with all the prerequisite knowledge and check-points ensures the successful running of your marketing campaign.
Let’s understand below, few of the many influencing factors and best practices of an SMS campaign to assure that you not only reach out to the maximum audience but obtain high responses of sent messages.
1. Write Your Text Message in Crisp and Personalised Language
Customers are always in haste of doing multiple things at the same time. With mobile phones in hand, multi-tasking has become all the way easier for them. With this divided attention span, you need to make sure that once your text message arrives on their mobile devices, apart from opening the message they are giving their whole attention to your message.
Providing crisp and to the point message makes it possible. Keeping a text limit of 160 characters and adding only the relevant information ensures that your message registers into the reader’s mind. Add value to their time, do not simply promote your offers/product instead mention how you are going to benefit or add value to the customer’s day-to-day tasks.
If your target customer readability is more in the local language compared to national/international language, then draft your message in their native understandable language. Address the text message with their names or send a promotional offer on their birthdays to give them a more personalised sense of belongingness with your company.
2. Select the Right Keywords to Trigger Human Response
As already stated in the last point you only have 160 words to put down your message in front of customers. To effectively utilise the limit, your message should contain the effective keywords which trigger human responses. An example of the usage of the right keyword looks like,
“Text FREE to 88888 to avail offer.”
“Text REDEEM to 79999 to redeem coupon”
“Text DISCOUNT to 88822 and get your discounts”
Here FREE, REDEEM, DISCOUNT are the keywords which trigger a human response.
Apart from prompting customer replies, it is also beneficial in campaign tracking. Use different keywords for different campaigns to compare the results based on the keyword.
3. Add Concise Call-to-Action to Push Customers
Once your SMS gets the required attention, it becomes necessary to give your customers some action steps to convert their rising interest into an action item. Remember the purpose of your marketing campaign once you start framing your Call To Action (CTA). If your campaign is focused on driving sales, then provide them with a sale specific Call-to-Action such as, Buy Now, Get Discount, and many others.
Your CTA can vary upon your business and marketing requirement. However, your CTA should be reflecting a sense of urgency which prompts the user to take action immediately. If your CTA lacks a sense of urgency, then your campaign may face a hard time in lead conversion, once the customer bounces from your text message, the probability of taking action gets reduced by a large amount.
To add a sense of urgency, you can use CTA’s such as Buy Now, Limited Period Offer, Try Now and many others.
4. Send Your Message on the Right Time
You certainly don’t want to overwhelm your customers with texts, and neither you wish to be neglected. So, to maintain a balance between the two aspects, smartly schedule your messages, i.e., understand your customer daily pattern and send your message at the right time.
Make sure you do not send your messages too early in the morning or late in the night. Schedule your messages in the middle of the day, when your customers are more likely to be active and around the phone. Abide by local time zones, every city/state follows a different lifestyle, so take into consideration the time pattern of your target area. Keep testing with your timing to hit the right spot.
5. NEVER Spam Customers
Respect your customer’s time and peace of mind. If a customer allows you to drop a message into their inbox, it’s your responsibility to leverage the opportunity in the most dignified manner.
So, don’t spam the customer’s inbox with continuous messages, it not only annoys the customers but also affects their trust in you and further may lead to customer dissatisfaction. Instead, drop messages at a definite time maintaining a minimal quantity.
6. Keep track of Your Campaign
The last strategy which defines the success of your campaign is the monitoring process. Once you have accomplished your campaign plan, the next thing is to get fully aware of the result. Ask yourself the following question to analyse your results:
- How much was the customer’s response rate?
- At what time you achieved maximum SMS open rates?
- Which keyword got the maximum response?
- Which geographical zone yielded the maximum response?
Such analysis can be easily inspected on the dashboard provided by the SMS service provider. Studying these analysis helps you understand the highs and lows of your campaign.
If you are using your website or marketing link in the text message, then, Google Analytics can help you track many advanced level analysis as well, such as total no. of visits, time spent on marketing page, and success rate of your SMS marketing campaign by tracing the no. of conversions done on the marketing page.
Add Value to Your Marketing with SMS Campaign
Ultimately, the result of your SMS campaign depends upon the warmup your company does before starting the whole campaign. The depth of research, planning, and advanced preparation decide the outcome of your marketing plan. Do remember to follow SMS guidelines specific to the country of operation.
SMS marketing is the most favourable kind of marketing, as it does not cost much to the business, and neither intrudes a lot in customers life. To make sure you evolve with every marketing campaign keep tweaking your strategies as per customer behaviour patterns and reception. The more you focus on the customer’s needs, the less you will need to be worried about the success of your campaign.