Today, there are 6.64 billion mobile users worldwide. Smartphones are part of everyday life for most of us on this planet. They help us work, shop, and socialize with modern efficacy and convenience.
Many people it seems are chained to their devices like a life partner or soulmate. One study has found that smartphone users check their phones an average of 96 times a day!
The good news for businesses is that SMS text messaging is as effective as ever. There is no better way to reach a large audience with simple messaging.
Let’s say you’ve already signed up for the best phone system for small business solution. But are you leveraging the power of mass text messaging for your marketing campaigns?
A short message service (SMS) text blast is a form of mass messaging that lets businesses reach a huge number of people with a single message. Unlike group messaging platforms like iMessage, WhatsApp, or Skype, text blasting creates private two-way communication between an organization and its customers.
Texts blasts are usually SMS but can also be conducted with multimedia service (MMS). With MMS messaging, you can include images, video, audio, and slideshows.
There are many benefits for organizations that use text blasting and mass SMS text messaging.
A recent report found that nearly 84% (see above image for source) of the world’s population now has a smartphone. In the US, there are over 294 million smartphone users, and 95% of Americans aged 18-49 own a smartphone. There is simply no single communication channel that can reach as many people as an SMS text message.
Email has long been used for marketing campaigns and is a stalwart of business communication. Most people check their email several times a day. Despite this, email open rates hover around 20%.
The result is that 90% of all SMS messages are opened within three minutes of being received. Some users may open a text after three minutes; so over time, this number approaches 98-99%.
Getting your customers to open your message is the first step to conversion. Unless you are sending out a general announcement, this will require the recipient to take action by way of clicking on a link or CTA (call to action) button.
According to SMS comparison, SMS has a 19% CTR compared to 4% for email and 1% for Facebook messages. This means SMS text blasting is nearly 5 times more effective than any other marketing channel.
Typically, SMS blasting and mass texting cost far less than other marketing channels like email, social media, or even influencer outreach. This is because to properly create campaigns for email and social media, organizations will need to invest in APIs to streamline and automate much of the process.
You are likely already using a group text messaging for business solution. The best ones already provide a fully integrated and capable text expander for business messaging. In this way, you can tap into your existing resources and reap the benefits of SMS blast texting.
Businesses like yours will want to follow the best practices when implementing group text messaging for business.
Getting user opt-in is necessary to fulfill any compliance requirements. Due diligence must be performed to ensure any external business communication meets the regulations of the regions involved.
You have many options to garner user opt-ins. This can be done during account creation or subscription via an app or website form. You can also look at options like interactive voice response menus or letting callers dial a specific number to opt-in to SMS texting.
It’s called a short message service for a reason. Each SMS text is limited to 160 characters. Longer messages can be sent using multiple texts, but try to keep communication concise and easy to read.
Your customers will appreciate the brevity and respect for their time–you will also avoid coming across as overbearing, verbose, and annoying (a good way to drive up customer churn).
For all US-based communication, you will need to follow guidelines set forth by the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA). This means that in addition to grabbing customer opt-ins, you will also have to provide quick and easy methods for users to opt out of SMS texting.
You can accomplish this by providing a link for recipients to opt out. Another common tactic is to instruct users to send a keyword such as “STOP” or “UNSUBSCRIBE” to terminate any SMS communication.
When sending out a text blast campaign, it can be difficult to manage your opt-ins and opt-outs. You can save the arduous task of SMS contact list management and use a business text solution to automate the immediate addition or removal of contacts.
With SMS text blasts, every message is sent as a private message to each individual. In many cases, this will result in a high volume of replies to your initial message (including any opt-outs).
Replying to every single message could result in a delayed and lengthy process. You can save your team valuable time by using a business texting platform in a similar way to what is an omnichannel contact center tactic: automation.
An automated reply message also makes your customers happy because they receive an instant response. This helps to avoid frustration and any confusion as to whether their text has been received or not.
The possibilities for SMS text blasts are nearly limitless. Here are a few of the most common use cases.
SMS is a great way to promote flash sales and other time-limited offers. Customers will read a message quickly after it’s received and be more likely to take action–the limited-time offer will instill their urgency.
SMS text blasts provide an easy option to inform your audience about new products, updates, and other brand-related news. Interested customers can follow links to their mobile web browsers for opt-ins, subscriptions, payment, and other types of conversion.
Text messaging can help keep customers informed about events like concerts, expos, live product demos, webinars, and just about anything. Ideally, your event planning goes smoothly and any updates on the time and place are as minimal as possible.
SMS text blasting is also a great way to gently remind potential attendees to save the date and avoid missing out.
You can use SMS texting to set up automatic payment reminders. This helps save your accounts and support teams from having to conduct routine calls. It is a simple yet effective way to help customers avoid service disruption and/or late fees due to missed payments.
Besides linking out to a payment option, you can link out to a contract document or agent agreement form that is time sensitive.
Over the recent global pandemic, many of us became very familiar with SMS text blasting via our healthcare providers and relevant government agencies.
Mass text messaging is an effective way to let a local population know about any emergency events. SMS messaging can also help to guide recipients on safety guidelines and what to do next during an emergency.
Building and launching your mass text messaging campaign is easy if you follow the necessary steps.
Every business plan or marketing campaign starts with well-defined objectives. It may be to gain more subscribers, gain X amount of donations, increase sales, or a vast amount of other business goals. You can’t go any further with a mass text drip campaign until completing this step.
Once you know your business aim, it’s time to identify your audience. Leverage information from your customer relationship management (CRM) software and marketing platforms to break down and segment your target audience.
Identity which segments will be targeted with the blast campaign.
Make sure you use the right SMS campaign tools for the job. For example, you may need a solution that lets you process payments and donations but not automatic replies. Identify which features are necessary for your campaign to ensure your chosen software is fit for your purpose.
Get your team together and write your SMS copy. Remember to keep it clear and concise. For businesses, try to stay on-brand in tone despite character limitations. And always include a CTA that causes users to feel a sense of urgency.
Plan your SMS messaging schedule. This is especially important if you’re conducting SMS text blasts as part of a drip campaign. Like a scheduler app, text messaging solutions let you schedule SMS texts for automatic delivery.
Once your SMS blast campaign gets going, you will want to track the results. Use your business texting solution to monitor sent messages, replies, open rates, CTRs, and other metrics in real-time. Alongside A/B testing, customer analytics will provide actionable insights to improve and tailor your campaign for better results.
SMS provides better access to your customers than any other communication channel. They say great things come in small packages. Effective use of short message service texting will elevate any marketing campaign with higher open rates and higher conversion.
You are likely looking to invest in enterprise application integration solutions, but If you’re not already using SMS text blasts as part of your marketing strategy, it’s not too late. Get signed up with a business texting solution today and launch your next campaign!
Grace Lau is the Director of Growth Content at Dialpad, an AI-powered cloud communication platform and cloud-based PBX for better and easier team collaboration. She has over 10 years of experience in content writing and strategy. Currently, she is responsible for leading branded and editorial content strategies, partnering with SEO and Ops teams to build and nurture content. Grace Lau also published articles for domains such as UpCity and Powermat. Here is her LinkedIn.
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