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Reaching customers with the right messaging has gotten increasingly more challenging. With the introduction of more channels, it has become easier to meet customers wherever they are. However, it can also be difficult to pin down where you can reach a large number of your customer base all at once. Sometimes, going back to basics can be just as effective.
It’s no secret that wherever we are, our phones are never far. The average person checks their phone 160 times a day with 46% of people checking them before they even get out of bed.
One way you can almost guarantee that you’ll be able to reach the majority of your customers is the place they always are; their phones.
Text message marketing is one way to reach your customers and support your overall business and marketing goals, especially when integrated through a centralized POS tool that manages customer information and email marketing tools.
Here’s how text message marketing can help you reach your customers more efficiently and grow your business.
Best practices for text message marketing
When it comes to marketing, you can easily spend your entire budget on sending information into the world, but it won’t help you achieve your goals if nobody sees it. Text message marketing can be incredibly effective at reaching your customers because of the open rates that come along with it. Texts have a 98% open rate. This doesn’t mean that every consumer who reads your message will engage, but you have a much higher chance of click-throughs via text message when compared to email marketing that has, on average, a 20% open rate.
Because text message marketing is a direct line of communication to your customers, there are a few rules and best practices to follow when reaching your audience this way.
- Only message customers that have opted in: People use text messaging for their personal communication, so it can be alarming to receive a text out of nowhere when you haven’t given permission. Customers must explicitly consent to receive text message marketing from you, so be sure to only message customers who have opted in to be contacted through their mobile devices for marketing. Most countries have laws around this, so make sure you are in accordance with local guidelines.
- Keep timing in mind: Nobody wants to be woken up to a message alert in the middle of the night or early in the morning. A good rule of thumb is to only send messages during standard business hours. Keep in mind that standard business hours in one time zone might be an after-hours time in another.”
- Be transparent: When sending messages, state your company name clearly in the message itself so customers are aware of who is contacting them.
SMS marketing strategies that you can use
There are a lot of different ways that you can utilize text message marketing for your business. Try these tactics to encourage engagement and increase your brand awareness.
- Promotions and deals: Create unique coupon codes to send directly to consumers. By including a click-through CTA, you can drive customers to your website to claim and use their coupon. Through Square’s text message marketing service you can track attributed sales through text messages when purchases or coupon codes are used by customers within 14 days.
- Automated personalized messages: Personalized campaigns automatically send messages based on certain triggers. For example, if someone just opened an account with your business, you can send an automated message with a 10% coupon.
- Surveys and polls: You don’t have to use text message marketing to just push out messaging about your products or services, you can use it to better understand your customers. You can ask questions directly in your messages or include links to surveys with a coupon code at the end to reward participating customers.
- Giveaways: Formerly known as sweepstakes, giveaways have become a very popular marketing tactic on social media. Send a message to customers encouraging them to sign up for an account for a chance to win a free product or service from your business. Just remember that there are laws and regulations around giveaways (depending on the state you live in) so read up on what guidelines or contact a professional for what regulations your business needs to follow before kicking off.
- Order updates: Customers likely want to know the most up-to-date information about their orders. Use SMS to keep them in the loop about their orders, building trust and transparency in the process.
Other benefits of using SMS
SMS marketing can be beneficial for reaching your target customers directly, but once you get the hang of reaching customers through text, there are additional ways you can utilize SMS to stay connected with your customers.
For on-the-go customers, the option to pay for a product or service through a text-to-pay option might be more enticing than logging on to a website or waiting in a checkout line.
If you’re a service provider or retail business, you can also send invoices via text message for seamless invoice payments.
Expanding into SMS marketing and payments can be complementary to your business strategy. By utilizing this tactic in addition to your regular marketing and payment channels, you open up the possibilities of how you engage your customers, reach them where they are, and create a convenient experience that they’ll remember.