An SMS campaign is a text message sent to a large group of recipients, usually for marketing purposes. Sales and discount messages are the most popular ones. SMS campaigns are a crucially powerful strategy to deliver essential information to people, and it works best in combination with other marketing channels, such as email or web push.
Everybody has a mobile phone these days, and throughout the day, we regularly check it. Chances are any business that can find its audience via this marketing media. SendPulse offers SMS functionality along with other channels such as email and web push. With a useful and well-performing service, the SMS campaign is easy to set up and send.
Let’s find out which problems SMS campaigns solve, why it proves to be a multifunctional marketing channel, and what results you will achieve if you decide to take care of your SMS campaign with SendPulse.
Why are SMS campaigns important?
- Extraordinary open rates
- Drives customers to take action
- Easy and instant
- Work well with other marketing channels
- Extraordinary open rates. According to Gardner, SMS campaigns achieve a remarkable 98% open rate (ninety-eight percent, Charles!) and a 45% response rate.
- Drives customers to take action. SMS messages are useful because they create a feeling of time sensitivity. In other words, SMS campaigns inform people about a limited time to take action, and if anyone wants to take advantage of the offer, they should hurry up. There’s no other marketing channel that creates a feeling of urgency so strong, that many decide to act rapidly.
- Easy & instant. Plain SMS is the standard while marketing emails are supposed to be well designed using HTML, so SMS takes only a few moments to create. Besides, the significant results are achieved much faster, because 95% of all texts are read within 3 minutes after being sent. It means that you can carry out your tasks in no time.
- Multifunctional. Desirable for any business. SMS marketing opens a vast field of opportunities for all sorts of companies. SMS campaigns inform about new products, services, allure clients with exclusive sales and offers. It also can deliver updates and notifications or remind them about the appointments. Besides, an SMS campaign can be used to report some relevant news or for support and customer services’ improvement.
- Work well with other marketing channels. Did you know that an SMS campaign can improve the results of an email marketing campaign? You can send SMS to “catch up” those people who never opened your email. So, think through the usage of an SMS campaign strategically, and support it with the efforts from other marketing channels.
According to SendPulse, describing all the advantages of SMS marketing takes from 3 to 6 weeks. So let’s move on to a small piece of practice.
How to Create an SMS Campaign
- Import your phone numbers
- Send an SMS campaign
As mentioned earlier, an SMS strategy performers best as a part of a broader marketing strategy. Combine SMS and email marketing with SendPulse.
Import your phone numbers
After you’ve registered with SendPulse, you can import the phone numbers by adding them while creating a new mailing list (add them in a category ‘Phone’). Note, that you don’t necessarily need email addresses, you can fill in only the ‘Phone’ category. Besides, the phone numbers can be added manually during the creation of an SMS campaign.
Send an SMS campaign
Now, as you’ve created a mailing list containing phone numbers, move forward and launch an SMS campaign. Just follow these tips, and you will get to the bottom of SMS marketing pretty soon.
SMS Campaign Tools
- Scheduled campaigns
- Segmentation. It’s possible (and recommended) to use segmentation in both email and SMS marketing campaigns. You can select the required variables, like gender, country, age, provided that you have this information on your subscriber list, and create slightly different messages to meet different people’s expectations at once. Check out if SMS segmentation shows better numbers.
- Scheduled campaigns. There are two ways to send SMS campaigns: you can send SMS immediately after you created an attack, or you can lay it aside and set the exact time when to send. For instance, if you know that 3 pm is the best time for your audience to receive an SMS from you, set it at 3 pm, and the campaign will be automatically launched right then.
- Previewing. It is an excellent chance to see how your SMS campaign will look on the phone screen. You can press the phone icon and preview your message.
SMS Campaign Ideas
- Send exclusive deals
- Promote seasonal and holiday offers
- Send reminders
- Provide personalized offers
- Inform subscribers about a new collection or product launch
- Send transactional SMS
- Encourage clients to join your brand on socials
- Ask for feedback
In this section, we’ll share effective SMS campaign ideas that will help you increase ROI and customer retention. Since a client’s smartphone is a private communication channel, we recommend choosing several ideas that fit your business best instead of sending all types of campaigns.
- Send exclusive deals. People are reluctant to share their phone numbers so you should motivate them well to do this. Offer them a time-limited promo code to get a 15% discount at your store. Make sure that this offer is unique — for SMS subscribers only. Otherwise, your customer will feel cheated. To boost sales, monitor your clients’ preferences and offer them a discount for their favorite products.
- Promote seasonal and holiday offers. Holidays are a great chance to boost sales because people look for the best presents for their dearest people. Seasonal campaigns are especially tempting for customers because they’re associated with huge discounts. So, this is your chance to be in the right place at the right time with your special offers.
- Send reminders. If you provide medical, beauty, repair services, or work in the restaurant business, reminders are just for you. They will help you notify clients about the upcoming arrangement, hence, avoid misunderstanding regarding the date or time. You can also let customers reschedule their appointment. With this SMS, you can build customer retention.
- Provide personalized offers. This kind of message allows marketers to build customer loyalty. Personalized offers are sent if a user added an item to their shopping cart and didn’t buy; if their favorite product is back in stock; to celebrate their birthday with an exclusive discount or a gift; to remind customers about the points they’ve collected and offer to exchange them for something valuable.
- Inform subscribers about a new collection or product launch. Your loyal customers are your brand’s fans. These people definitely wait for your new products and collections. Let them be the first to know about your arrivals.
- Send transactional SMS. With transactional text messages, you can inform clients that their order is confirmed, tell them about the status of their order, and notify of the delivery. You can also add a link to track the shipment. Such messages contribute to building customer retention.
- Encourage clients to join your brand on socials. To increase your outreach, you can tell subscribers that you have profiles on social media. To sound persuasive, explain why they should join your community. You may use socials to share news about your company, collect feedback and reviews, or show some behind-the-scenes content.
- Ask for feedback. You can send an SMS a week after the purchase to collect customer testimonials. You can simply say that you’re interested in the clients’ experience and ask them to answer several questions. Provide a link to a survey. Their answers will help you improve your product and the quality of the service.
SMS Campaign Best Practices and Tips
- Let your audience opt-in
- Find the right time
- Make a smart and targeted copy
- Come up with valuable offers for your audience
- Offer only exclusive deals
- Add a time-sensitive element
- Segment SMS by location
- Put a strong CTA in your SMS
- Personalize your SMS campaign
- Let your audience opt-in. Some countries have implemented laws similar to the email CAN-SPAM Act into a phone industry. The most respectful and trusting way to build a good relationship with your audience is to give them a chance to opt-in. Perhaps you’ve already gathered phone numbers using a subscription form, but if your subscribers don’t expect to get SMS from you, they might be irritated. Asking people if they want messages from you is a gesture of politeness. An opted-in mailing list is the most valuable audience for communication.
- Find the right time. The wrong time to send an SMS is when people are commuting to and from their works. It’s from 7-10 am and 4-7 pm. And you’d better not wake your clients up at night: it’s rude and leads to unsubscribes. Any other time will do, as people contact their mobile devices many times throughout the day. That’s the reason why 95% of SMS are opened in 3 minutes, remember?
- Make a smart and targeted copy. To reach your contacts, every SMS must have a specific structure to be as efficient as possible. Put your offer at the beginning of the message and follow up with the CTA. People are busy, so lay your cards on the table right now, it’s a fair play.
- Come up with valuable offers for your audience. There’s nothing complex here. If the message is irrelevant, it’s boring. If it’s boring, it’s annoying. Nobody likes to be annoyed, so make sure you make the right proposal to the right people.
- Offer only exclusive deals. You see, if mobile users get the same promotions via email or on the website, there’s no sense in mobile messages from the consumers’ point of view. SMS campaigns must differ from proposals elsewhere. Provide people with something extra, and chances are you will get excess returns.
- Add a time-sensitive element. Your customers will squeeze in the time to take advantage of your proposal if you demonstrate it is helpful enough. Encourage them with a good discount, which expires soon. This will activate their interest.
- Segment SMS by location. Take advantage of geographical data, if you have gathered any. Tailored to the right people, your message makes them feel that following your proposal is a genius move. Don’t forget to let them know where exactly they should go to “take what’s theirs.” It doesn’t matter whether it’s an offline shop or an e-commerce business.
- Put a strong CTA in your SMS. The customers are more engaged when they get a direct and clear call to action. It may be a particular condition, that enables customers to complete a deal at the store. For instance, ask them to show the SMS to an employee to make it official, it will raise your chances to score.
- Personalize your SMS campaign. As well as in email marketing campaigns, personalization improves conversion rates of SMS campaigns. If you have this data in your client base, why not put it to use?
SMS Campaign Examples
SMS campaigns can be used for multiple purposes. Let’s consider a few of them:
SMS campaign to offer time-limited discounts:
SMS campaign as an invitation:
SMS campaign as an internal company message:
💙 Can I send SMS campaigns with SendPulse?
💳 What is the cost of an SMS campaign?
The price depends on your location and the country of your recipients. You can find the price for sending SMS to different countries here.
📲 How do I create an opt-in SMS marketing campaign?
When you collect subscribers with SendPulse’s free subscription forms, add the “Phone number” field to your subscription form. Once users have subscribed and shared their phone number, you have their consent for sending marketing SMS. With that, we recommend sending your first SMS as a reminder about how they got on your SMS list and explain how to unsubscribe if they want to stop communication.
🔍 How do I track your SMS campaign?
After you send an SMS campaign with SendPulse, you can track the delivery rate. This data will help you detect fake or inactive phone numbers and exclude them from further SMS campaigns.
📊 How can you measure your SMS campaign’s effectiveness?
After you send an SMS campaign, calculate the increase in your overall revenue for that specific period. Subtract expenses for SMS sending from that overall revenue. This approach will only give you approximate results, but it is the easiest way to measure your SMS campaign’s efficiency.
👋 What is a normal response rate for an SMS campaign?
Around 98% of recipients open SMS and it takes about 90 seconds on average.
Last Updated: 11.12.2020