One of the best ways for small business to market their products and/or services is through the Short Message Service (SMS) approach. However, there are regulations and controls put in place to govern this type of marketing as is the case with other types of marketing. For American businesses, the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) is there to ensure no one sends unsolicited text messages. This is especially for those using the bulk marketing strategies.
To successfully use SMS marketing, you need to keep off any kind of violation that may threaten the existence of your business. SMS marketing is much better than email marketing due to the open rate comparison between the two. Consumers are most likely going to read an SMS than open an email. While that is true of SMS marketing, there are important tips to apply to do it successfully:
Get to Know SMS Marketing Rules
Understand what is required in SMS marketing before engaging it to market your business. The most important regulation to take note of is that you can only send messages to people who have opted in for such messages. Email marketers are fond of sending promotional messages to anyone who signed up just for trial. This may not be the case with SMS marketing. Here, you will be required to ask your customers to manually opt-in or consider subscribing via a text message sent to them using the relevant keywords and shortcode. Even though the acquisition of leads might be hard this way, the quality of the leads that will be generated will be of a greater value and conversion.
Keep Messages 160 Characters Long
Texts on mobile networks are normally broken into chunks of 160 characters. Therefore, make sure that your SMS doesn’t exceed that. This is because some networks may not send the two broken chunks of your message or may choose not to send such a long text. That means your intended recipient may not receive the text or may receive it in a distorted manner. Again, it is better to send a short message that the recipient will read quickly without struggling or taking much of their time. An SMS Messaging Platform like ultrasmsscript.com can help you learn more about this.
Do Proper Timing
Consider a case whereby a local eatery shop sends you an SMS offering a discount when you were just about to place an order for a meal. This is what SMS marketing targets a lot – the timing of what they want to offer to you. The nature of the channel is in a way that recipients open up their messages immediately after getting them. However, the absence of a visual platform makes it hard for marketers to establish a brand recall via this channel. In that case, you must make sure to reach out to prospects when they are just about to make a buying decision.
Write Texts with a URL or a Phone Number as the Call-to-Action
The success of an SMS marketing campaign is pegged upon a clear call-to-action. You will not have anchor links or fancy buttons for SMS marketing and therefore, these are the only options you have: phone number or a URL included at the end of the text. Let the customer know how they can buy what you want them to purchase. For URLs, you may need shorteners such as Bitly to take care of the 160 characters at your disposal. Enable your prospects to act on their impulse and make it possible to contact your business. That’s the whole point.
Promote your SMS Shortcode on Different Media
Your SMS marketing needs promotion. It is still a game of numbers and therefore, every promotional message will need advertisement regardless of how good they are. The size of the list will determine the effectiveness of your campaign. One secret to growing your SMS marketing organically is by advertising the shortcodes through other media channels like hard print, TV, radio, email and so on. The most important point here is to invest in your shortcode in order to develop a pool of continuous buyers from your establishment.
Small businesses can benefit a lot from SMS marketing when they engage with the rules and regulations of the game. It is therefore important to study what goes on in this marketing approach before embarking on it fully. Here are 5 SMS marketing tips that must be applied to a successful marketing strategy for small businesses.