SMS Marketing 101: The Complete Guide

SMS Marketing
Anahid Akkam

Anahid Akkam is a content writer and journalist who has been writing for almost a decade. She has written extensively on a wide range of topics, ranging from cloud communication and literature to lifestyle and marketing.

Sep 19, 2022

Table of Contents

What is SMS Marketing

How SMS Marketing Works

Types of SMS Marketing Campaigns

Who Uses SMS Marketing

What Makes SMS Such A Powerful Marketing Medium

How to Start SMS Marketing

Why SMS Marketing Is Important

Is SMS Marketing Effective

How To Collect Mobile Numbers For SMS Marketing

Many people associate marketing with traditional methods, such as print ads, television commercials, and radio ads. However, marketing also includes newer methods, such as online advertising, social media, content, and of course, text marketing. With the advent of SMS (short message service), marketing has become more efficient and effective.

SMS platforms allow businesses to communicate with their customers more effectively in a more timely manner. This has led to increased sales and customer satisfaction. SMS gave businesses the opportunity to send messages directly to consumers’ phones, which made it possible to reach them anytime, anywhere. Business owners were now able to track consumer responses to their messages in real-time, which made marketing more effective and efficient.

What is SMS Marketing

SMS marketing is a form of digital marketing that involves sending text messages to potential and existing customers. It can be used to promote products and services, or simply to keep customers informed about special offers and discounts. SMS marketing is a highly effective way to reach customers, and can be used to target specific demographics and geographic locations.

Not only that, but it is also a permission-based marketing channel, which means that businesses can only send messages to customers who have opted-in to receive them. This makes it a more targeted and effective form of marketing than other channels, such as email or display advertising.

There are a few key ways that SMS differs from email marketing. Firstly, SMS messages are typically shorter in length than emails. You have to convey your message in 160 characters. Secondly, messages are sent directly to a person’s phone, while emails can be sent to an inbox. This means that texts are more likely to be read and responded to in a timely manner. Although nowadays, you can convert an email to SMS

Moreover, SMS messages can include calls-to-action and links, while email marketing generally relies on images and text to deliver its message.

SMS marketing services can be used by businesses to send promotional messages to potential and existing customers. This can be an effective way to increase sales and encourage customer loyalty. Businesses can use SMS marketing services to send discounts, coupons, or special offers to customers. They can also use SMS marketing services to send reminders, updates, or announcements.

How SMS Marketing Works

The advantage of SMS marketing is that it is a direct form of communication that can reach a large audience quickly.

To start an SMS marketing campaign, a business must first have a list of customers or potential customers that they can contact. They will then create a message that they want to send out to these people. This message can be about anything, but it must be short and to the point so that it can be read quickly.

Once the message is created, the business will then send it out to its list of contacts. These contacts can be people who have opted in to receive messages from the business, or they can be people whom the business has purchased lists of phone numbers from.

After being sent out, people will start to receive the message on their phones. If they are interested in what the message says, they will then respond to it. The business can then use these responses to gauge the effectiveness of its SMS campaign and make changes if necessary.

Keep these in mind when planning a text message marketing campaign:

  1. Keep your messages short and to the point. People do not want to read a long message on their phone, so make sure that your message is short and to the point
  2. Make sure your message is relevant. People will only respond to messages that are relevant to them, so make sure that your message is about something that they would be interested in
  3. Use a call to action. Your message should include a call to action, such as "text us for more information" or "visit our website to learn more." This will help encourage people to take action.
  4. Test your campaign before you launch it. Send a test message to a few people to make sure that everything is working properly
  5. Monitor your results. Keep track of how many people respond to your messages and what they do after they receive them

Types of SMS Marketing Campaigns

SMS marketing campaigns can be used to promote a wide variety of products and services. Some common types of SMS marketing campaigns include:

  1. Promoting a sale or special offer: This is a great way to increase foot traffic to your business or website
  2. Sharing a coupon or discount code: This is a great way to increase customer loyalty and encourage repeat business
  3. Sending alerts or reminders: This is a great way to keep your customers informed about important dates or events
  4. Conducting customer surveys: This is a great way to gather feedback about your products or services
  5. Sending promotional messages: This is a great way to generate new leads or customers

Who Uses SMS Marketing

1. Retailers

Retailers use SMS marketing because it is a very effective way to reach a large number of people with a message. Not to mention, it is very affordable and can be customized to fit the needs of the retailer. And most importantly, SMS marketing is a very convenient way for retailers to keep in touch with their customers and send abandoned cart reminders.

2. Restaurants

Some of the ways that restaurants use SMS marketing include sending out coupons and discounts, sending reminders about upcoming events, and sending special offers. With SMS marketing, restaurants can build customer loyalty by sending out loyalty rewards or by sending thank-you messages after a customer visits.

3. Event venues

By using SMS marketing, event venues can target a specific audience with a special offer or update them on last-minute changes. SMS marketing also allows them to track response rates in real-time, making it a valuable tool for gauging interest and measuring ROI.

4. Service providers

SMS marketing allows service providers to reach a large number of people with a single message. This is especially useful for service providers who want to promote a new service or product or provide high-quality customer service. It's also much cheaper than other forms of marketing, such as TV or radio advertising.

Not only that, but SMS marketing is very easy to set up and track. Service providers can easily set up a campaign and track the results to see how many people responded to the message.

5. Schools and universities

Schools and universities can communicate with their students and staff very quickly and easily thanks to SMS. These messages can be very targeted, so educational institutions can send out messages to specific groups of people, such as students who are struggling with their studies, or staff who need to be reminded of an important meeting. SMS messages are relatively cheap to send, which means that schools can save money on their marketing budgets by using SMS marketing.

What Makes SMS Such A Powerful Marketing Medium

SMS is a powerful marketing medium because it allows businesses to reach a large audience with a short, concise message. Unlike other marketing channels, SMS does not require a lot of time or money to set up and maintain. SMS messages have a high open rate, meaning that more people are likely to see and read them. This makes SMS an ideal marketing channel for businesses of all sizes.

SMS is also a very personal channel. People are more likely to read and respond to a message that comes directly to their phone. To put it simply:

  1. SMS has a very high open rate. In fact, over 98% of text messages are opened and read within minutes of being received.
  2. SMS is a very personal form of communication. Unlike email, which can often feel like mass communication, SMS feels like a message from a friend.
  3. SMS is a great way to reach people on the go. People are often tethered to their phones, so SMS is a great way to reach them even when they are on the go.
  4. SMS is a great way to deliver time-sensitive information. If you need to get a message to someone quickly, SMS is the way to go.
  5. SMS is a great way to reach people who may not be reached through other channels. For example, people who don't check their email regularly may still check their text messages regularly.

How to Start SMS Marketing

When it comes to SMS marketing, there are a few things you need to keep in mind to get started on the right foot. First and foremost, you need to make sure that you have a well-defined target audience. Once you know who you want to reach, you need to come up with a compelling offer that will encourage them to opt-in to your SMS marketing campaign.

Once you have those two pieces in place, you can start to think about the logistics of your campaign. This includes things like what kind of call to action you will use, what kind of keywords you will need to incorporate, and what kind of opt-in process you will use. Basically, you need to come up with a well-curated SMS marketing strategy that will encompass your business's goals.

After figuring that out, you can start to put together your campaign. This includes creating your messages, designing your call to action, and setting up your keywords. Once you have all of that in place, you can start to send out your messages and track your results.

SMS marketing can be a great way to reach a large number of people with a very targeted message. By taking the time to plan and execute your campaign carefully, you can ensure that you get the most out of your SMS marketing efforts.

Businesses can use an SMS marketing software to send mass text messages to their customers or clients and automate mundane tasks. An SMS marketing platform can help create and launch campaigns by managing the contacts, messages, and keywords associated with the campaign. The platform can also help to create landing pages and track results.

Why SMS Marketing Is Important

1. It’s Immediate

Your message is delivered straight to your customer’s mobile phone, which means they can read it right away. This is important if you want to send time-sensitive information, such as a sale or a last-minute appointment reminder.

2. It’s Personal

Because SMS messages are sent directly to your customer’s mobile phone, they feel like they are being communicated with on a personal level. This can help to build trust and loyalty between you and your customer base.

3. It’s Interactive

Your customers can reply to your SMS messages, which allows you to have two-way communication. This is a great way to get feedback from your customers or to encourage them to take action, such as redeeming a coupon or entering a contest.

4. It’s Trackable

You can track who opens your SMS messages and what actions they take, such as clicking on a link or redeeming a coupon. This valuable data can help you to refine your campaign and make adjustments accordingly.

Is SMS Marketing Effective

There is no doubt that SMS marketing is effective. This is because it allows businesses to reach out to a larger audience with minimal effort. The average SMS conversion rate is about 3%. This means that for every 100 SMS messages sent, about three will result in a conversion. However, there are a number of ways in which SMS marketing can be ineffective when used for the wrong purposes.

  1. If the target audience is not interested in the product or service being marketed, they are likely to ignore or delete the message without reading it.
  2. If the message is not well-written or relevant, it is likely to be ignored.
  3. If the SMS marketing campaign is not properly planned or executed, it is likely to be ineffective.

But when used correctly, SMS marketing can help increase sales and brand awareness, while also providing a way to communicate with customers in a more personal and direct way.

How To Collect Mobile Numbers For SMS Marketing

There are a few ways to collect mobile numbers for SMS marketing. One is to use a sign-up form on your website or blog. This can be a simple form that asks for the visitor's name and mobile number. You can also offer an incentive for signing up, such as a discount or free shipping on their next purchase.

Another way to collect mobile numbers is to run a contest or sweepstakes. This can be done through social media, your website, or in-store. Make sure to clearly state that entrants will be providing their mobile numbers and that they may receive marketing messages from you. You can also use a service like Twilio to set up a keyword that people can text to opt-in to your SMS marketing campaign.