While SMS offers a direct route to your customers, its limited character count poses a challenge. Every word counts and the message needs to be concise yet impactful.
Crafting an effective SMS marketing message can make the difference between an engaged customer and one who opts out. Here are a few tips to help you create compelling messages:
- Keep it short and sweet: With typically just 160 characters to work with, brevity is key. Avoid jargon and be direct in your messaging.
- Create urgency: Phrases like "limited offer" or "today only" can push customers to take action immediately.
- Include a clear call-to-action (CTA): Be explicit in what you want the receiver to do. Whether it's "Shop Now," "Reply Yes," or "Visit Our Store," make sure the action is clear.
For example, let's say you're an e-commerce business promoting its flash sale. You might use a text message like this: "Flash Sale! 50% off select items until midnight. Shop now."
Meanwhile, if you wanted to target a specific customer, you might use "Exclusive for you, Sara! Free shipping on your next order. Use code SHIPFREE at checkout."
Just as with email marketing, personalization can elevate the impact of text message marketing campaigns and increase customer loyalty.
Addressing the subscriber by name or referencing a past purchase can make the text message feel more tailored and special. Segmentation can further refine this approach.
For instance, if you have a list segment of customers who frequently purchase skincare products, an SMS about a new skincare line or discount on their favorite products can be more effective than a generic text message.
Conversely, for a segment that's been inactive, a special "We Miss You" discount might re-engage them.
Another emerging trend in SMS marketing is conversational SMS. This approach enables two-way messaging between the brand and the customer.
Rather than just sending out promotional content, businesses can engage in real-time conversations, address queries, and provide immediate assistance. It creates a personalized experience, making the customer feel valued and understood.
Time and frequency of SMS campaigns
One of the most critical components of an effective SMS campaign is the timing and frequency. Getting this right ensures your text message is seen, welcomed, and acted upon. SMS marketing strategies also consider the perfect moment to send appointment reminders, ensuring higher attendance or product purchase rates
Unlike emails, which can be checked periodically, SMS messages command instant attention. Most texts are read within just a few minutes of receiving them.
To leverage this immediacy, respect your customers' boundaries and avoid early mornings and late nights. Instead, stick to sending text messages during regular waking hours.
You should also consider peak activity times. Depending on your business, times when people typically shop or engage with your kind of service might be ideal. For instance, lunch hours or early evenings may be effective for retail promotions.
How often you send your SMS messages is just as important as when you send them. The ideal frequency can vary based on the nature of your business and the preferences of your audience. However, as a general rule, you should limit the frequency to about one or two texts a week to stay top-of-mind and avoid overwhelming subscribers.
Remember, every SMS is an intrusion into your customers' personal spaces. While they can be effective, overuse can lead to fatigue, with higher opt-out rates.
To avoid overuse and spamming your customers, only send text messages that offer tangible benefits or value to the recipient, such as exclusive discounts, important news, or a special event. You should also allow subscribers to customize how often they hear from you or what kinds of updates they wish to be notified.
Drive sales with SMS
SMS offers a unique opportunity to drive sales through real-time, immediate CTAs. Flash sales, limited-time offers, and exclusive discounts are a few of the most popular SMS strategies for promoting products and services.
The immediacy of SMS makes it perfect for time-sensitive promotions to create urgency and spur immediate action.
At the same time, you can reward SMS subscribers with special deals
that aren't available through other channels. This adds value to your SMS subscription and encourages more sign-ups.
Promotional SMS can also be used for new product launches, allowing you to announce new products or services directly to your most engaged customers.
You'll also need to consider your call-to-action to craft the perfect SMS marketing message. CTAs must be clear, direct, and compelling. Given your limited character limit, CTAs must also be short. You should also consider where you're ending subscribers.
For instance, if you're driving traffic to your website, you should ensure the landing page is mobile-friendly since most people will access it via their smartphones.