Text message marketing is one of the more effective ways for small businesses to reach a targeted audience of interested consumers. It is also referred to as short message service (SMS) or Group Texting, and it stands as one of the most cost-efficient ways for a small business to strengthen the bond with its customers.
Group texting is extremely effective, but it is more effective for certain types of businesses. For example, retail stores and restaurants can get an immediate response from text messaging out coupons or special offers. If you can find a way to benefit from text marketing for your business, then you will see results that will grow your bottom line.
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Building a Text List
It is estimated that 80 percent of adults access the Internet through their smartphones and over 90 percent of smartphone owners open and read every text they get. This means that when you use text marketing services, you are going to have a captive and interested audience.
There are anti-spam laws in the United States that make it illegal to send SMS messages to a user who does not want them. While this can sound like an obstacle, it is actually the inspiration you need to build an effective and powerful SMS marketing list.
You can put a form on your mobile website that allows people to opt-in to receive your marketing messages, and you can place information throughout your business information that gives people a number they can text to get on your list. While it takes a while to build a marketing list one person at a time, you are actually creating a focused list of people who want your marketing messages and will more than likely act on them when they receive them. This increases the return on investment for your text messaging program considerably.
Make Your Messages Concise and Powerful
To create your messages, you can invest in text message marketing software that will help you to craft effective but concise messages. When you get long text messages, you tend to either not read the whole thing or ignore them completely. The same goes for your target audience. If you want your messages to be read, then they need to be concise and get to the point.
Develop Good Timing
A big part of developing marketing programs of any kind for your business is taking the time to understand the best times to send messages to your audience. If you run a clothing store, then you might notice that Saturday mornings are when the bulk of your customers make their way out to go shopping. A well-timed text message about your latest special will be much more effective when sent just when your audience is leaving their house.
You will never get the timing completely right all of the time, but you need to pay attention to patterns and trends to help you send out effective messages. When it comes to effective text message marketing for small business, timing is everything. Good timing means that your messages will not be treated like advertising spam, but rather like good information your customers can use.
Always be Marketing
Have you ever noticed that when you walk into some businesses, you get a prompt on your phone to check out the latest coupons and deals? This sort of proactive mobile marketing is extremely effective, and it should be something you use to grow your marketing list.
When customers walk into your store, you should automatically send them a message with your latest specials and a number they can text to opt-in to your marketing list. One of the best times to convince a customer to join your SMS marketing list is when they first walk into your store.
Remember the Personal Connection
As you focus on writing concise text messages, you should also remember to use your group texting marketing to engage and build stronger relationships with your customers. Give the customers who opt-in to your SMS marketing program coupons and special pricing that only they can access. You should also develop a loyalty program using your text service that allows customers to build up points for purchases and get rewards.
When every text you send has value, then your customers start to look forward to receiving them. This anticipation lowers the number of people who opt-out of your program, and it makes the customers who react to your texts feel special and appreciated.
Focus on the Affordability
You can see a significant return on investment (ROI) with text message marketing when you use the right texting service and software. Compared to other forms of marketing such as email, texting is less expensive but reaches a more active audience.
Short text messages sent at the right times throughout the day can increase revenue and strengthen customer loyalty. When you start looking at other forms of mobile marketing, always remember the return you get from texting versus any other type of marketing program.
Remember the CTA
Even though your text messages are going to be short, there still needs to be a call to action (CTA) included in each one. Some of the best text messages are just CTAs with a number to text for more information. It is important to get your customers to take action on every text you send to increase your ROI and give your customers a reason to recommend that their friends join your text list as well.
A small business needs to take advantage of as many cost-effective marketing methods as possible, and text message marketing is about as cost-effective as it gets. By creating a list of consumers who are all interested in receiving your texts, you can send out messages that you know will be read and will most likely be acted upon.
Short text messages containing information that is valuable to your customers can help to expand your customer base, strengthen the bond you have with existing customers and make your customers feel like their business is appreciated.Opinions expressed here by Contributors are their own.