by Cameron Douglas
SMS Marketing

SMS marketing can be used to enlighten subscribers about new releases, discount offers, back-in-stock notifications, special events, and post-purchase follow-ups…

Most people are glued to their smart devices all the time. A smartphone is always in your customers’ hands as they surf the internet or connect with friends on social media.

If you want to promote your product or service and grow your business, targeting audiences on mobile devices is not an option. Smart insights show that mobile usage has surpassed fixed internet access globally.

Marketers know the value of sending personalized and relevant SMS marketing messages to target customers more than ever. If used appropriately, SMS can be personal and instantaneous, helping you engage with your target audience.

As a marketer, you can use various methods such as mobile banner ads, QR codes, or ads on video games to reach mobile consumers. Nevertheless, some marketers ask how they can get potential customers’ email addresses and phone numbers.

Others also wonder what they can do to encourage subscribers to give numbers for SMS texts. How do you utilize email lists and SMS marketing without becoming spammy?

We present you with practical SMS marketing strategies that are easy to implement, including:

  • Event promotions
  • Loyalty programs
  • New product releases
  • Post-purchase follow-ups
  • Discount offers
  • Stock notifications

SMS event promotions

You can use SMS to promote your virtual events like webinars or in-person events such as trade shows. Direct your subscriber to the registration page via SMS. You can also send SMS to remind those who have registered about the event as the day draws near.

You could also employ local-based segmentation to ensure you send SMS to those who live nearby. You do not want to send an in-person invite to customers living miles away who would benefit from a webinar.

Location-based segmentation will help you send SMSs based on your customers’ time zone for virtual events. 

SMS marketing to loyalty program customers

If your business has never used SMS marketing and wants to test its efficiency, you could try sending messages to small portions of your subscribers, such as the VIPs. 

Rewarding your top consumers by sending them an SMS is an excellent idea. They are already familiar with your brand and will not have a problem cementing their loyalty to your business. What can you tell them in the SMS?

Why not thank them for their loyalty and give them priority to new collections and products? You could also offer them exclusive or extended discounts to keep them glued to your products and services.

You could also send SMS to regular customers on their way to VIP status, highlighting some benefits of sticking with you. Create a rapport with these customers and help them see you truly care.

Notifications of new product releases

SMS marketing can be used to notify your subscribers of the new arrivals. This method is useful for businesses with limited inventory.

Customers want to know when the new merchandise arrives and make purchases before stock runs out. Sending them an SMS helps them keep your store in mind whenever they look for a new product.

You could also send the SMSs about products that will soon arrive with their features and then follow up with another SMS when the new products arrive. This method improves conversion since customers know when products they want are available at your store.

Discount offers

Discount offers can help you get your visitors’ contact details. You can offer the opportunity to be the first to hear about discounts, special offers, and various promotions by submitting their details in your SMS list.

If you have loyal customers, it will be easy to keep them sign-up for SMS. You already keep them in the loop about offers available at your store, meaning you can easily entice them to have a look at the upcoming offer by providing their phone numbers.

Are you offering specific discounts on your new arrivals or old stock? Send your subscribers a text message to inform them of the sale’s launch and the products on offer. Everybody loves discounts, so you will get good returns if you do it right.

Use SMS for follow-ups.

 SMS can help you create engagement and connect with customers who have purchased at your store.

If the product is technical and may require special assembly instruction or care, you could follow up with an SMS offering needed assistance.

If your customers ordered products from your site and need them shipped to their location, you could use SMS marketing by informing them of their shipping status.

This will alleviate customer anxiety as they await the arrival of their new purchase. Sales and customer loyalty are about how you make your customers feel, and follow-up SMS makes your customers feel valued.

Stock notifications

If your customers find that the new products have run out, they may be frustrated, and an SMS on back-in-stock can help soothe them. You could even send an SMS telling your clients you will contact them once the new arrivals touch down at your store.

If you are experiencing logistic or supply chain issues affecting your inventory levels, you could send an SMS to your customers about the delay and when it will be resolved. You could combine this strategy with the loyalty strategy, telling your VIP customer ahead of time of the expected shortages.

Best practices for SMS marketing

 SMS marketing has the dos and the don’ts you should know before embarking on your marketing plan. Consider some of them:

Get permission

Email marketing rules also apply to SMS marketing. As a marketer, you ensure you get explicit consent from your subscribers or customers before sending them marketing communications.

You could get this consent by including a field for a phone number in the subscription sign-up form. However, how do you retain this permission?

You could include a full disclosure by telling your customers the type of SMS they will receive. Once they consent, ensure you do not abuse it because overusing it will be a turn-off for your customers. No one loves to be spammed.

Remember to provide a way out for your customers who do not want to be contacted. This would be something like sending the word “STOP.”

Keep the SMS short and informative.

Since SMS messaging only has 160 characters per page, you have no room to be vague. How can you shape your message?

  • Focus on the value- how the SMS will add value to your product
  • Identify yourself- Your client should not guess who you are. Otherwise, they will not put the message in context.
  • Use good grammar- Business requires professionalism, so refrain from using abbreviations and slang because not all your customers will understand them.
  • Differentiate your message from the subject line- You don’t want the recipient to struggle to understand the message because it is not properly organized.
  • Include a clear CTA- The SMS should encourage the recipient to take action.

Personalize your SMS Campaigns

Your SMS marketing strategies will succeed if you include segmentation like it is done with email marketing. One way to get personal is to have the subscriber’s name (first name if possible) in the SMS.

You could also incorporate the subscribers’ location and details from their last purchase to create a relationship with your customers.

Personalization would also mean sending SMSs to your subscriber at the right time. Send the messages at the time people are awake. If your SMs are ill-timed, you may not have success with your campaigns.

The Bottom line

You can significantly improve your ROI by implementing correct SMS marketing strategies and following best practices. SMS marketing is fast and elicits a spontaneous response, meaning you can measure its success faster than other marketing strategies. It also has high engagement rates since you can personalize your messages and form relationship with your subscribers.

Which SMS marketing strategies are you using, and are they successful?

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