The Best Tactic You’re Not Already Using: SMS Gets Results
Logically speaking, it had to happen. Integrated marketers who have built a strong brand, with a relatable voice and core values, are now seeing that their customers want to take the relationship deeper. No, we’re not talking about the ‘put a ring on it’ type of engagement, but a recent survey found that more customers want to be able to engage with brands and businesses via SMS (short message service, or text messaging). Here’s why you need to change your status to ‘in a relationship’ with SMS marketing:
- Higher open rates: 98% of customers who opt-in for text messages read them, and click-through rates range from 10 – 30%. Compare that to an open rate of 29% and a CTR of just 3% for email.
- Confidence: Stricter opt-in policies make customers feel like they’re in control.
- Versatility: SMS marketing can be used for customer service, building brand awareness, ordering, combatting cart abandonment, and gathering information about what customers think and want from your business.
- Immediacy: 90% of text messages are read within five minutes, so SMS marketing allows you to push out time-sensitive messages and create a sense of urgency.
- High conversion rates: The skincare company Kiehl’s reported that 73% of its customers who opted-in for text messages made a purchase within six months.
- Beat the competition: SMS marketing is still vastly underutilized: despite customers actively looking for text-based interactions, only about 1 in 5 business leaders plan on expanding their SMS efforts. This could be your big opportunity!
Where SMS Fits into the Bigger Picture
Even with results like those, SMS isn’t a magic silver bullet. Think of it as a strategic addition to a well-stocked, integrated marketing toolbox that already includes:
- A carefully crafted brand voice and tone. In a way, your texts should feel no different from your social, content marketing, or emails: they should contain some hint of your brand’s personality and values and feel like an extension of the conversation.
- A robust website to bring your customers back to. Even though some SMS marketing allows users to place orders or get direct customer service – bypassing a website altogether – the ultimate goal of these text interchanges is to bring your customers to your site to engage with content or go straight to your storefront to load up their carts. For maximum benefit, your site should be optimized for mobile.
- A solid email marketing program. SMS is a natural complement to your email marketing efforts. Because text messaging is just 160 characters of cold text, it’s never going to take the place of your email marketing, and it can’t do what a beautifully designed, carefully written email blast can. In fact, one of the best ways to use SMS is to prep customers for when you’re going to send a lengthier email.
Could SMS Be a Good Addition to Your Marketing Mix?
Contact us to learn more about how SMS fits into your overall marketing plan. We can make recommendations, and we can even help you optimize your other tactics for true integrated marketing success.