The Dos & Don't You Dare's of SMS Marketing
Are you ready to skyrocket engagement with your digital marketing campaigns? Short message service (SMS) marketing is one of the easiest ways to really connect with your customers and ensure they come back to make repeat purchases.
In fact, it often has a higher open and click-through rate than even email marketing. The reason? Text messages are a lot more personal and make it far easier to reach your ideal customers in a unique way.
However, before you start, you need to have a plan. Here are a few ingredients to remember in your SMS marketing recipe that can make or break your campaigns.
DO: Ask for Permission
When starting an SMS marketing list, you’ll definitely want to make sure you get permission before adding customer phone numbers to your campaigns. Having an opt-in process is important to ensure your brand is following all legal guidelines for digital communication.
That said, this is actually fairly easy to do in most cases. Run a special promo offer where shoppers get a discount or an additional swag item in exchange for opting in. Or give shoppers a checkbox to complete when they’re finishing a purchase. Once you have a green light, then you can start sending out text messages.
DON’T YOU DARE: Send Too Many Messages
One of the biggest mistakes eCommerce brands make with SMS messaging is sending too many messages in a short period of time. If you’ve ever signed up for an SMS list with your favorite retailer, you’ll notice that they’re fairly selective as to when those messages actually go out and try not just to bombard you with multiple ones within a few hours.
As a rule of thumb, sending texts to your list is fine once a day or every few days. You definitely don’t want to go too long without sending a message, either. But just make sure you don’t totally overdo it.
DO: Make Your Message Valuable
You also want to remember to make every single message you send out to your SMS list valuable. What does this mean? It means don’t just send a text for the sake of sending a text.
There are various angles you can take to make these SMS campaigns have a valuable message, too. Consider education campaigns that offer guidance or links to blog posts to help your customers use your product more efficiently. Or you can provide a special offer, announce a sale, or something else pertinent to your online store and brand.
DON’T YOU DARE: Forget to Give Opt-Out Guidance
Another thing you definitely don’t want to do is forget to give opt-out guidance. Just like with emails, having a link or command to make it easy for individuals to leave your list is incredibly important. And it’s also a legal requirement, which makes it even more important to include in each message you send out.
While you might have the occasional opt-out, the percentage of people who do this is actually fairly low for SMS. As long as you aren’t bombarding your list with text messages, then they’ll likely be happy to hear from you.
DO: Add Elements of Personalization
Looking for an excellent way to make your SMS marketing campaigns even more effective? Add in certain elements of personalization. This can be as simple as a first name, local area, or whatever else makes sense for your brand and business.
Many consumers these days are looking for that little extra bit of something that makes them feel as though they’re an individual, not just someone who is going to fork over the money and buy from you. So, make sure you get creative with your messaging and include these little details to show them how much you value their purchases.
DON’T YOU DARE: Skip the Call-to-Action
It happens all the time. eCommerce brands send out a massive SMS marketing push and are puzzled when they don’t get a response from anyone. The problem? They forgot to tell their recipients what they want them to do after viewing the text.
Instead, make sure each message you send out has a clear and identifiable call to action. This can be clicking a link to see a particular sale, viewing a special item, or whatever makes the most sense for the copy you’re using. Just make sure the path to the next step is clear, such as including a special coupon code at checkout or buying a specific item.
DO: Keep It Fairly Short
An SMS campaign is not the time to showcase your chops as an excellent copywriter. In fact, you have limited space, so it only makes sense to keep your overall message fairly short. Generally, you want this to be under 200 characters or so.
However, you can definitely use this to your advantage. Just like with Pay-Per-Click (PPC) advertising or social media marketing, you can use a hook to get customers to click on a link in your SMS message. From there, they’ll access a blog post, landing page, or other information to help you close the sale.
DON’T YOU DARE: Send Messages at Odd Hours
Have you ever found yourself woken up in the middle of the night by a marketing text message? If so, there’s a good chance you might still be salty about it. And that’s why it is so important to remember timing when it comes to your SMS marketing.
In addition, there’s a good chance that your customers are going to be in multiple time zones. If you use an SMS marketing tool, look for one that adjusts to the shopper’s time zone based on their area code. This will help those big mistakes from happening and annoying people.
Wrap Up: SMS Marketing for Your eCommerce Brand
If you’re looking for an innovative way to draw attention to your eCommerce brand, then you’ll love SMS marketing. While your website, email list, and other digital marketing campaigns are important, text messages are really just icing on the top.
Are you ready to learn how to use SMS marketing for your eCommerce brand? Please contact our CAKE team of digital experts to start the conversation.