Over the years, text message marketing has proven itself as one of the most effective marketing channels. For just pennies per text, businesses can send people a message that will be opened 99 times out of 100. The vast majority will be read within minutes. Compared to email marketing where most emails will be deleted unread, text message marketing is by far the better option.
Each year more businesses look to SMS for their marketing needs. But as businesses flock to text message marketing, there are a lot of mistakes being made. Some are more serious than others. While mistakes are unavoidable. These five mistakes are ones marketers should take note of to ensure they never make them.
Texting without permission
Of all the mobile marketing mistakes, texting without permission is the biggest and the most costly. According to the Federal Communications Commission, (FCC) texts are viewed as phone calls and are covered by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) which prohibits businesses from calling (or texting) without permission. Regulations regarding text messaging change periodically so it’s important that you stay up to date with the current laws. One thing is sure, you need the express consent of any person you are going to text before sending that first message. You can be charged hundreds of dollars for each text you send without permission if it comes to a lawsuit.
Complicated opt-in process
While it’s important that you get people’s permission, you want to make that process as easy as possible. A complicated opt-in process can discourage some consumers. You want to make it very easy for people to sign up to receive your texts. One of the simplest ways is to ask them to text a keyword to a short code. Asking consumers to scan a QR code which will take them to a website where they fill out several fields will be less effective.
An advantage texting has over email is that people haven’t yet experienced message overload. But that could happen in the future if marketers aren’t considerate of consumers. If you send too many texts too often, the concept will quickly lose its novelty and consumers will grow tired of them. They may even opt out of receiving texts in the future. It’s better to send a handful of well crafted texts each month than to send one every day.
If you’re going to invest money into sending texts, you better make sure every single word counts. Remember the three Cs. A text should be clear, concise, and include a strong call to action.
Almost as bad as an irrelevant message is a message with poor timing. Texts early in the morning or late at night are never good as they could upset consumers. But even in the middle of the day, a text can be poorly timed. If you own a restaurant and you’re sending a text about a new lunch menu item. That text will be far more effective just before lunch time than in the evening when a person will probably forget about it by the time lunch rolls around the next day.
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