As surprising as it may be, marketing via SMS and creating a slick text is turning out to be among the most effective marketing tools.
Before, advertising through social media or emails was given precedence, whereas nowadays, the high opening rate of text messages has lent Slick text campaigns a huge level of credibility.
Social media may be SMS marketing’s biggest competitors, but Slick text is outstripping the more traditional means of advertising due to the fact that Americans tend to check their phone every twelve minutes.
Add that to the fact that about 92% of US citizens have their SMS activated on their phones, while Wi-Fi does not have complete cross-country coverage gives marketing via SMS a clear advantage.
Designing a Slick Text Campaign:
While it may seem simple enough to determine that your business is in need of SMS marketing, executing your vision to perfection needs a lot of careful planning.
#1. Find the objective of your campaign:
The first and foremost thing a marketer needs to do is to find the major objective of their marketing plan.
Do they wish to provide information, improve engagement, offer customer support, or sell something? Once this question is answered, you can then move onto creating a better outline for your campaign.
When formulating an SMS marketing strategy, you should ask yourself the following questions:
· Are you targeting old customers or prospective customers?
· Are you aiming to promote a specific event or a special offer through your marketing campaign?
· Does your Slick text campaign require a shortcode or specially made keyword?
· What is the duration of your campaign? Will you continue to send several messages over a long period of time or will your campaign consist of a single message?
· Can your campaign’s main message be conveyed under 140 characters? And if not, do you need to design a landing page for it?
· Is your marketing campaign complementing other social media marketing, or is it a separate endeavor entirely?
· Does your marketing campaign require specific demographic information like the location of a client?
An overview of the planning phase is outlined below:
#2. Make a client list:
While devising a strategy for your Slick text marketing plan, you will have already determined who your audience is.
As long as your audience opts in for your messages, there is nothing holding you back from messaging them for promotional purposes.
If you have an incomplete list of recipients, then you can add your mobile number to your website, newsletter, or add it in relevant fields across all social media.
Creating specially made forms that you attach to your social media bios can also be a good way to allow people to opt-in.
Besides digital means of acquiring information, you can also make your sales team to ask customers to opt-in for texts during the point-of-sale.
Once you have built your list up, you can use CRM to maintain detailed profiles about your client base and cater to them accordingly.
Regardless of whether your list is new or old, segmenting it is of utmost importance. Segmentation can allow you to manage your list and customize the content of any Slick text marketing so that you can gain the most out of your campaign.
For instance, if your online store has amassed a bunch of new arrivals, you can use previous purchasing history to customize the content of each text.
Currently, there is a huge disconnect between big chains and consumers, so adding a personal touch to promotional messages can make a customer feel seen and heard, and give them a sense of importance.
While creating segmentations in your consumer base can be highly beneficial, you can only reap the full extent of the benefits if you can maintain and format your list properly.
While this may seem like an obvious step, small mistakes at this stage can potentially lead to big misunderstandings in the future.
For instance, if someone has signed up for your company’s text marketing scheme with their landline number, or if you have noted down an incorrect name, this can create some distance between you and a potential customer.
#3. Pick the perfect provider:
Once your audience and marketing strategy is laid out, you can move on to looking for an SMS campaign service provider.
Because, while text message marketing may give you the impression that you can do it yourself, the reality of the situation is much different.
Below is an image of some of the parameters that Twilio’s employs to help you get the most information about your text marketing campaigns.
Making use of such marketing platforms allows you to integrate your marketing across several platforms.
There are several factors that can help you determine which provider is the best for you the first being the cost of the service itself.
Are the provider’s services within your budget? The cost of a service provider is usually divided into a fee for sending each message plus an additional fee for renting out keywords.
You should make sure that your provider’s monthly plan aligns well with your number projections.
While SMS marketing, there are two key components involved. For instance, in the message “Text PEPSIMAX at 710710 to get entered into a lucky draw!”, PEPSIMAX is the keyword and 710710 is the shortcode.
You should also figure out what kind of shortcode would suit you the best. If you are looking for the most cost-effective option, then sticking with the shortcode that your service provider gives you is a better method.
However, if you want to have more flexibility, then you can have your personal shortcode. This is especially advantageous as it provides you with a shortcode that is unique and therefore, you have a greater chance of standing out among the crowd.
Before picking a provider, you should also check what their message formatting allows. For instance, if you want to add images or sounds to make your texts more engaging, does your service provider offer those kinds of features?
You should also determine what your campaign provider’s workflow capabilities are.
Generally, SMS campaigns have a fairly simplistic workflow, but if you are planning to complement them by using other marketing tools like email campaigns, then the game changes entirely.
For instance, if your customers have a wide variety of different localities, and you want to send them texts that are customized according to their locality, you need to ensure that your campaign provider has flexibility in this regard.
#4. Creating the perfect campaign design:
After the initial planning stage has been completed, it is time to move on to the creating phase.
Getting a customer to opt-in to your SMS campaign may be easy, but retaining their attention is much harder. Marketers are urged to use the power given to them wisely.
There are many ways to go about texting, but the right way to do it includes checking the timing of your message.
While people do have their phones on hand at all times, it is only at certain times that they are open to responding to messages.
Reaching them during lunch hours on a weekday or within a larger time frame of 8 am to 7 pm can bear the best results.
If you are running a multinational corporation then you should be aware of the different time zones of your consumers, and make sure you are not disturbing them during odd hours of the night.
You can also send messages based on any events you are planning. For example, if your store outlet is having a flash sale, you can inform customers about it on the same day.
Highlighting your call to action by capitalizing the keyword can draw attention to it and reduce any confusion to it.
By emphasizing your call to action, you can gain your customer’s attention and instill a sense of urgency in them.
Encouraging interactivity can really improve the return on your investment. For instance, if you conduct a lucky draw, then you can ask customers to respond to the text, which can count as a single entry.
You can also increase interactivity by using clever keywords such as a particular city or location.
Once an individual responds to a text with the name of the location, a company can provide them with a detailed list of the nearest outlets as well as some of the relevant products they stock.
For instance, Reebok, a major sports brand utilizes SMS marketing to a great extent.
Customers can opt-in to Reebok text marketing by simply texting “Join” to a given number.
A customer can then send a text “Offer” to Reebok’s number and you will then receive a list of the latest available offers and deals.
You can also use different keywords like “Help” to get customer support or “Stop” in order to opt-out of the SMS marketing campaign.
#5. Practice makes perfect:
Optimizing your SMS marketing strategy can take time and patience, and depending on your objectives, along with the parameters you wish to measure, it can be quite challenging.
The first step to ensure that your SMS marketing strategy is hitting its target audience is to look at metrics that can predict how well your texts are trending.
You can do so by examining metrics such as the click-through rate, conversion rate, and even figures that show you how many people opted out for your text messages.
All this and more can help you statistically analyze which of your text message marketing strategies are more effective than the other.
Parameters of this nature can give you a general outlook about how your campaigns are doing, and they can also come in handy when your campaign is new and has yet to take off.
For instance, when it comes to SMS marketing campaigns, you can go through several rounds of A/B testing, which is one of the most basic yet most effective testing options.
In A/B testing, there are two main versions of the same thing. This means that among the two split versions, one (usually strain A) is the control, while the other is the variation.
The variation can go into as much or as little detail as you deem necessary. For example, you can test out the efficiency of slightly different offers, or you can go into minute detail and see how slightly changing word variations can give you different results.
All of these variations can help you determine which method suits you the most using indicators such as opt-in rates or number of times customers redeemed an offer.
Subtle language changes may not seem too important, but they can really help instill a sense of urgency, which can make people want to act faster in order to redeem different offers.
You can also do A/B testing on coupons, different call to actions, ending a text with the sender’s name and even including the name of the recipient.
Subtle changes like this can lead to different variations, and cherry-picking the best method for your company is vital for your SMS marketing strategy to succeed.
SMS marketing may not be the newest trick in the book, but it opens up an entirely new avenue of potential customers.
Planning an SMS campaign can be tedious work, one that is well worth the effort.
By outlining your goals in a clear cut and concise manner, and also establishing what steps will be required to acquire results every step of the way, you can gain a better insight into your SMS campaign’s success.
Remember, that by segregating and grouping your clientele under different demographics, you can send messages that are more targeted and personalized, which can result in higher lead generation.
Also, choosing the perfect provider for your campaign needs is vital for its success. In order to get the most out of your provider’s services, make sure your goals align with their monthly texting plan.
Designing an SMS campaign may be the final step, but surprisingly, the subtlest of nuances can garner better results.
Paying attention to small details like timing, wording, and intonation can go a long way to improving your lead generation.
The image below provides some insight into the campaign lifecycle of SMS marketing: