Many successful brands and businesses have smartened up to the fact that SMS marketing can become a very powerful tool they can utilize in placing their marketing message in front of their customers while doing it in a more cost-effective way in comparison to other online and offline marketing channels. The number of mobile devices and their users is on an exponential rise. If you own a business, this should be a clear sign that you need to incorporate mobile marketing into your overall marketing strategy in order to build and nurture relationships with your potential and existing customer base. This article will provide you with an analysis of 6 SMS marketing tools you can utilize to engage and connect with your customers so they can hopefully become customers for life.
1. Text To Join
This is a tool designed to attract new customers by inviting them to become a part of your text subscriber list. It will allow you to send them your marketing messages directly to their cellphone without the need of downloading an app or login in to any other online account. This has proven to be an incredibly effective marketing strategy due to the fact that as many as 90% of mobile device users read their text messages and more than 85% of them do so within 20 minutes of receiving them. This technology enables customers to text a specific keyword (which a business owner chooses) to a unique “short code”. Short codes are defined as short phone numbers that are shorter than normal phone numbers and are easier to remember. Businesses are able to receive “short codes” by paying a flat or monthly fee to a provider who can deliver this service to them.
Here is an example of using a text-to-join technology and explanation of how “short codes are” used:
Text Info to 82257
When a customer you are targeting types the keyword ”Info” to the short code “82257”, the customer will get an SMS providing further information about accessing information, product or service that the business was promoting. At the same time, customers are subscribed to the list of people who will be receiving future updates and any related information regarding the services or products that business is promoting.
2. Text/Mobile Coupons
By offering text/mobile coupons, a business owner can solidify their relationship with an existing customer base by offering them SMS offers and discounts on their products or services. This technology works very similarly to the “text to join” as explained above. The customer receives a “shortcode” to which he or she needs to send a specific keyword to. The “shortcodes” and the keyword are provided by the company that is offering discounted products or services. Once the customer sends these details via SMS, the company will typically send the text back that contains instructions on how to redeem the SMS coupons and also include a link to the coupon or the company’s website. These coupons can then be redeemed online or offline, depending on where and how the business operates.
3. Web and Social Media Sign Up Forms
Another method of attracting new customers is by using sign up forms on various web and social media properties, such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. The typical sign-up form contains the fields that capture the basic information of a potential customer: their first name, surname and email address. Every business owner who has the foresight to add a “mobile phone number” field to their sign up forms will put themselves head-and-shoulders above their competition as their response rates will skyrocket. This is due to the fact that they will able to attract new client base using mobile devices, in addition to using traditional marketing channels.
4. Group Text Alerts and Text Reminders
Businesses can use Group Texting and Text Reminders to send bulk SMS text reminders and alerts to all of their customers at the same time. These features can be used for numerous occasions and situations:
– Promoting daily or monthly product discounts and special sales
– Announcing new offers, products and services
– Sending texts that do not pertain to any specific product or service but are used as relationship builders, such as sending inspirational quotes and messages.
These SMS marketing tools are specifically designed for customer retention purposes by peaking the client’s interest in your products and strengthening the relationship you have with them. Group Text alerts and Text reminders are used when you do not want to send an SMS to a specific segment of the customer list but to the entire customer base.
SMS marketing allows you to communicate with the customer at the exact point when he or she receives your text message or purchases a product from you. This provides you with a perfect opportunity to receive instant feedback from them. Therefore, it is essential to be able to install an effective customer feedback system by designing mobile questions, customer surveys and suggestions in order to understand their needs and how they feel about your business. If you want to incorporate text feedback into your campaign, you need to provide customers with a phone number they can access on their mobile devices after which they can enter their feedback. The results are then instantly updated on your website. This simple step increases customer engagement exponentially and they are very likely to become repeat customers. Also, the probability that clients will provide feedback is very high as SMS marketing makes is simple and easy – all that is required of them is to do is tap a few buttons on their mobile device and they are done.
6. Mobile polling
If you need to determine what your customers are thinking, all you need to do is simply ask them. That is why mobile polling is a great tool that should be used in all mobile marketing campaigns. People like to be asked their opinions on issues and if you incorporate mobile polling in your campaign, the way that your customers engage with you will improve substantially. Mobile polls don’t require you to install any special software and they can be created quickly and easily. The customers send their votes by SMS to a specific phone number and you can view the results of the poll on your website.
SMS marketing provides a powerful channel to attract and retain customers, build a solid relationship with them and keep them engaged with you and the marketing message your business is trying to convey to them. Six mobile marketing tools explained above have hopefully shed new light on how and why every business should implement them in their campaigns because SMS marketing and mobile devices are definitely here to stay.
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