SMS marketing continues to be a proven powerful tool that enables businesses to immediately and effectively connect with customers. But while some businesses understand why to use SMS marketing, many might be trying to grasp how to get their marketing program started and set up for success. Below are some tips on how you can run an effective SMS marketing program that will benefit you and your customers.
Know Your Customers
The starting point is to know your customers. You can achieve this with the help of a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. CRM application can help you to manage your sales, marketing, customer support, and contacts in a single system with the goal of improving customer relationships. Also, CRM can help you to analyze purchase history and location-based demographics if you are a multi-location business.
When sending SMS marketing messages, you can utilize lists of new customers, lapsed customers, and regular customers. This allows you to create smart campaigns for every audience. This might be giving incentives to new customers with a coupon to make their first purchase or targeting regular customers with updates that popular items are restocked.
Define Your Goals
Before diving into sending marketing messages, you need to sit down and outline clear goals of what you are trying to achieve. For some it might be building brand identity, while for others it could be building a customer base for increased sales. The most important thing is for you to have clarity on the goals you want to achieve with your marketing campaign.
You can start by using S.M.A.R.T goals that outline the following: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. This strategy can help you understand the what, how, and when. In addition, it allows you to have defined objectives and hold yourself accountable.
Set Clear Opt-in Guidance
Like email marketing, SMS is a permission-based channel and requires consumers to opt-in to receive messages. Customers can enroll in SMS marketing programs at checkout or by texting a business’ unique phone number, shared through social media, email, or at a physical location.
Whatever way you decide to use for opt-in, it needs to be obvious to the customer that they have consented to receiving these messages to avoid confusion and potential opt-outs.
Optimize The Messages and Time
It is important to send SMS messages that are thoughtful and concise to show the customers that you respect them and not spamming them with messages. Also, you need to avoid using abbreviations and all caps. In addition, you need to ensure that your messages have an explicit purpose like sharing information on a sale, event, or other occasion.
No one wants to receive messages early in the morning or late at night. Your customers are the same. Try and share marketing messages between late morning and early evening. Check your campaign results and adjust accordingly.
Create a Clear and Effective CTA
You should use a call-to-action (CTA) to increase engagement. This ensures that consumers are more likely to act on your campaigns. For example, you can do the following
- encourage your customers to “Buy Now” by sharing a link to a routinely purchased product,
- “Click Here” for a gift card encouraging customers to come in and shop, or
- RSVP for an upcoming event.
Always ensure you make everything timely by setting a specific date when a sale ends, coupon expiration date, and details of an upcoming event to further entice customers to engage with your business.
Measure What Works and Adapt Accordingly
As you run your campaign, you need to track it daily and measure what works. You can do this with an integrated POS system. This ensures you link your campaign to your sales history so you can track the revenue and visits generated from each campaign. Also, you will never have to guess if your time and money were well spent. Metrics you need to track are sales per campaign, open rates, and cost per message. As a business owner, you can use these insights to determine which messages are working and which aren’t. You can then refine and improve your next campaign for increased ROI and performance.
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