SMS marketing is arguably the most powerful marketing channel you have at your disposable as a small business owner. But if you bought into SMS marketing assuming it would be effective right from the start, you may be disappointed. Like all forms of marketing, you need to constantly adapt and improve your SMS marketing strategy over time. Here are seven ways you can improve its effectiveness.
Clarity and conciseness
If your texts are too wordy, many mobile phone service providers will break into two or even three parts. The cap is usually 160 characters which includes punctuation marks and even spaces. This may cause the messages to be read out of order or ignored entirely. Even if the message is received in a single text, you want to be concise because recipients are more likely to read it from beginning to end. A good strategy is to include a call to action where you tell the recipient exactly what course of action you want him/her to take.
Good timing is key
The timing of text messages matters. For one, you don’t want to message too early or too late in the day when customers might get annoyed. Some products are time sensitive as well. For instance, you wouldn’t want to advertise a lunch special in the evening. Spacing out your messages is important as well. Most business texting platforms allow you to write a text in advance and set the time to send it.
It’s all about variety
Mix up your offers. Different customers will be influenced by different things. Keep switching things up so that there’s something of interest for each of your customers.
Target your audience
Since you’re spending money for each text you send, you want to make sure that you’re not wasting any money sending messages to people who won’t be receptive. Getting people to subscribe is half the battle. It’s important to get people to subscribe for a couple reasons. First of all it’s required by law that you get customers’ permission first before texting them. Second, it ensures that at the very least, everyone receiving your texts wants to receive them. After that it’s a matter of finding out what motivates your audience and adjusted your message to target them.
Allow customers to opt out
Just as you must obtain permission in order to text a customer, you must always give them the option to opt out with each text. While it seems like a bad thing, it’s a blessing in disguise. People who opt out are not likely to lead to sales anyways so you’re not losing out on your best customers. It’s your job to make the offers and messages good enough to keep customers from opting out in the first place.
Pay attention to metrics and adjust as necessary
Keep an eye on important metrics like open rates and click-through rates. You’ll begin to notice patterns between the messages and offers you send and how much your audience is responding to them. From there you can start to fine-tune your strategy to maximize the effectiveness of each text.
Constantly build your database
Even after you’ve built up your database to a good size, you can never stop building. Use other marketing channels you have to market your text message channel. Make it an elite club for loyal customers and people will want to join it. If you keep building, then you don’t have to worry as much about the opt outs.
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