As you go deeper into business, you’ll encounter strategies to reach more customers. At some point, you’ll encounter text message marketing. Unlike other strategies, text message marketing wasn’t as popular until recently when some businesses experienced a drastic increase in sales revenue.
Naturally, people like you will become curious why simple text messages are so powerful for business marketing. And that’s why you’re here. But before anything else, you have to understand the relationship between customer outreach and text messaging.
Relationship of Text Messaging and Customer Outreach
Customer outreach refers to the process of establishing connections with prospects to turn them into regular customers. At its core, customer outreach is when you advertise your products and services to those that are still unaware of your business.
There are several ways to do customer outreach, and these include:
Paid Advertising = Better customer outreach
Paid advertising is when you create an advertisement for your business and pay the owner of a platform so they can display your ads. This is perhaps the easiest way of doing customer outreach because aside from creating the ad, you have nothing else to do. However, this is also more costly than other strategies.
Google AdWords is a platform where businesses bid for their ads to be shown on Google. It’s similar to paid advertising since you pay Google so they can show users your ad. The only difference is that instead of accepting ads from any businesses, they prioritize those that bid a higher amount than others.
Social Media Marketing
As the name suggests, social media marketing is when you promote your business through social media platforms. Examples of these platforms are Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube. Depending on the nature of your business, choose the appropriate platform. For example, if you want to reach out to professionals, you should choose LinkedIn.
Content marketing is the most popular customer outreach strategy in the business world. It involves using content as bait to lure customers into your business. You can classify content marketing into two: inbound marketing and outbound marketing.
Inbound marketing is when you attract and reach customers with content that you think are suitable for them. Outbound marketing, on the other hand, attracts customers with content that are not necessarily tailored to their needs.
You should already be familiar with print media. It’s one of the oldest forms of marketing. To reach more customers, you can print promotional materials like brochures, newspapers, and magazines. Although it’s already forgotten by a lot of businesses, it still has the capacity to market your business in a way that digital marketing cannot, especially for local small businesses.
Cold Calling prospective customers
Another old marketing strategy is cold calling. Cold calling is where a salesperson or an agent contacts an individual, most likely a stranger, through a phone call. And after doing so, the agent will introduce the business and its products and services.
However, cold calling is not the same as it used to be. Before, salespeople used to go door-to-door selling and personally meeting customers. But with modern technology, cold calling has become increasingly easier to do. For example, Power Dialer tools give agents the ability to filter customers from individuals who aren’t interested, making the process seamless.
Finally, we have email marketing, a popular marketing strategy among businesses of different industries, mainly because various tools are available to help them with the job. Its concept is quite simple. Email marketing is where a business sends emails to its prospects and customers.
What Is Text Message Marketing to Customers?
A text message is any form of message that mainly consists of texts. That is why instant messaging and push notifications can also be considered a text message. However, that’s not the text message marketing that you need to know.
Text message marketing is where you use SMS technology to distribute information to customers and prospects. That’s why you can also refer to text message marketing as SMS marketing. Examples of this information include promotions, discounts, business news, content, and more. Think of it as email marketing, but instead of emails, you use text messages.
The best part about SMS marketing is that there are numerous tools out there like Drop Cowboy text & ringless voicemail that can help you with your marketing plans.
The Benefits of Text Messaging for Customer Outreach
If you think your email marketing campaigns are not bringing the kind of results that you expected to reach more customers, you can start looking for an alternative. And to further reassure you, here are some of the things that text messaging can do for customer outreach:
Text messages have high open rates
Emails have an open rate of 20%; whereas, text messages have a higher open rate of 98%. This fact alone proves that SMS marketing is better when it comes to responses. But why is there such a huge difference?
To begin with, text messages are easy to view. You don’t need to connect to the internet, unlike with emails where you need to be online. Plus, email providers are advanced enough to filter out spam. That’s why most emails that businesses send to reach customers may not make it into their inbox. Chances are most of them will rot in the spam folder, forever unopened.
SMS works with other marketing campaigns
As they often say, there are means to an end. If you always look for ways to promote your business, you’re most likely going to utilize different strategies. Consequently, you can create marketing campaigns on different channels and platforms.
Perhaps you’ll use email marketing, cold calling, or social media marketing to reach more customers. Although SMS marketing can serve as a standalone campaign, it’s also possible to integrate SMS into your other marketing campaigns. For instance, you can create a marketing campaign on Facebook. Once you have enough visitors, you can organize an event where your visitors can participate by texting your business number.
Simply put, SMS marketing can help you improve the performance of other campaigns. Furthermore, compared to other strategies, integrating SMS marketing to your other marketing channels is a lot easier.
Receiving and sending an SMS is quick for customers
Sending an SMS is very easy, not to mention quick. With the press of a button, you can send a message to anyone as long as they have phone coverage in their area. What’s more, they’re likely to receive the message whether they like it or not, because as previously said, there’s no spam filter on text messaging apps.
Perhaps the only problem is that text messages are too simple. As the name suggests, it only consists of texts. However, this can also turn into a good thing, especially for reaching more customers. After all, you don’t have to add templates or designs like you would for an email. Just write what you want and send it away.
Prospective customers are given a choice
Much like emails, prospects can choose whether they want to receive promotional text messages or not. For emails, you call it subscription, and you have to unsubscribe to stop receiving a business’s emails. But when it comes to SMS, subscribing is called “opt-in” and unsubscribing is “opt-out”. So, what does this have to do with reaching more customers?
As a businessperson, you should know how important it is to give your customers an option. They can choose to receive your messages, or they can ignore your business. Besides, similar to the open rate, SMS marketing has a 10.5% opt-in rate, according to Tatango. This is higher than that of email marketing.
On the other hand, customers can also choose to stop receiving your messages. Although you don’t want that to happen, it’s important to still have this option. After all, your business may gain a bad reputation if customers aren’t given a choice.
Tracking SMS marketing performance is possible
Tracking the performance of your marketing campaigns is crucial for any business to reach more customers. Not only does it give you information, you also get insight into how you can adapt the campaign.
However, a lot of businesses seem to think that tracking SMS marketing performance isn’t possible, and that can’t be further from the truth. In reality, there are certain tools that allow you to get detailed analytics on your SMS marketing campaigns.
As you use these tools, you’ll encounter different metrics. For example:
- Click-Through Rate refers to the ratio of people who received your message over the people who clicked your message.
- Opt-out Rate is the rate of people who are still receiving your promotional text messages over those that opted out.
- Redemption Rate corresponds to how many people received your text over the number of people who redeemed a coupon via your text.
- Conversion Rate is a metric that shows you the ratio of the total number of prospects to those that purchased your products and services.
Aside from these four metrics, you can also find the costs that you have to pay for the SMS marketing campaign. It can vary according to the type of campaign you used. Remember that you won’t get to see the analytics if you manage the campaign without any tool.
Short codes provide a more organized customer database
One of the main problems with marketing is that once you get hundreds of clients, managing the database becomes challenging. You have to reply to countless inquiries while keeping tabs on customers that are most likely to purchase from your business.
Without a reliable system, there’s a high likelihood that you will lose loyal customers because you’re not able to keep them engaged. That’s where short codes come in.
Short codes refer to a sequence of numbers, typically consisting of five to six digits. These codes are used to manage high volumes of messages while minimizing the risks and price. In other words, it’s the perfect component for an SMS marketing campaign.
What Makes a Good SMS Marketing Campaign to Customers?
At first glance, you’d think that creating a good SMS marketing campaign is simple and easy. Write a short message, send it to individuals, and you’re done. However, it’s not as easy as you think, especially now that people have a short attention span.
Besides, an SMS can only consist of 160 characters, and you can’t add rich media. But aside from these, you also have to include certain components on your campaign. These include:
Call to Action (CTA)
Call to action refers to what you want your customer to do next after they read your text. For websites, they add CTA buttons such as “Subscribe Here” or “Join Here” and clicking on these buttons will do just as it says. However, for text messages, a CTA can be anything. You can push them to text a certain number, and by doing so, they will be added into your mailing list. You can also instruct them to type in a certain keyword so they’ll receive another message from you.
You should also consider adding links to your text messages. For example, you can add the link to your website so they can read more of your content. A link to your eCommerce shop is also viable. Remember that these links are long, and you don’t want to waste precious characters for the link. Hence, experts suggest using URL shorteners.
Lastly, you have to include a way for customers to opt-out of your text message. You can add an opt-out option by saying “Send STOP to 1234” or “Go to this link to stop messages”. By doing so, you’re giving them assurance that they can stop seeing your messages, which may also contribute to their desire to opt-in.
Despite the simplicity of text messages, there’s more to SMS marketing than meets the eye, if you’re looking to reach more customers. It can compete with other marketing strategies in terms of customer outreach efficiency while being less costly than other campaigns.
However, only a few businesses are making full use of this strategy. Make sure you have an edge over your competitors by utilizing this strategy.