Tag Archives: text message marketing

The Power of Text Message Marketing [INFOGRAPHIC]

As brands focus efforts on keeping up with broadcasting trends across social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, many are neglecting a tried and true marketing tactic that could propel them even further: narrowcasting.

Narrowcasting marks an emerging trend by which consumers are sharing content with smaller, more selective audiences. In contrast to broadcasting, narrowcasting is about tailoring information to better compel the recipients. It’s a competitive alternative, as evidenced by this infographic from Mogreet. While broadcasting gets a brand’s message out to a massive group of people, when it comes to who is actually reading and engaging with the content, the numbers are staggeringly low.

For example, 84% of Facebook news feed stories aren’t viewed, 71% of tweets get ignored and 88% of emails go unopened. Meanwhile, 98% of text messages are opened, and therefore, companies that market through SMS/MMS have a far truer reach.

Do these statistics surprise you? If you’re a broadcaster, does this graphic make you want to give narrowcasting a try? Share with us in the comments.

Four Mobile Marketing Mistakes You Can Easily Avoid

Are you hesitant to dive into certain areas of mobile marketing for fear of making mistakes?

Strategy Analytics predicts that advertiser spend on mobile media will almost double from $6.3 billion to $11.6 billion. Certainly there are plenty of marketers diving in, and they’ve made their share of mistakes along the way.

The good news is that we now have lots of examples from which to learn, and many mobile marketing mistakes are easy to avoid. Here are four to watch out for:

1. Failing to optimize your landing page for mobile.

Solution: This is like putting the cart before the horse, and failing to optimize the landing page for your mobile display and search campaigns can cost you valuable conversions. To ensure you’re providing users with a fast mobile experience free of pinching and zooming, check out our guide on “How to Build a Mobile Website.”

Example: Mobile Marketer seems to have a new example every week of an advertiser that hasn’t optimized a landing page for mobile. White Castle, P.F. Chang’s and Target have all run into this problem recently.

2. Using the same paid search campaign for desktop and mobile.

Solution: Mobile searches are inherently different from those of desktop, and if you’re using the same paid search campaign for both, you’re missing out on an opportunity for better results. Google suggests modifying keyword selection, adjusting bids and utilizing mobile-specific ad formats to drive performance with a separate mobile campaign.

Example: At the time of writing, a search for “flower shop” on my mobile device yields results from businesses large and small. Local business Lawrenceville Flower Shop comes out on top with a click-to-call ad, while other small businesses have missed the opportunity.

3. Deploying QR codes that can’t be scanned.

Solution: If your QR code can’t be scanned, it’s just taking up valuable space. Thorough testing is extremely important, and be sure to follow these design-related best practices to improve reliability. Also, remember that your audience should be able to access the Internet (no subways) with the ability to stop and scan (no billboards).

Example: 60 Second Marketer featured a guest post on the “Top 5 QR Code Fails of 2011” – proof that with new technology, even the most seasoned marketers are bound to mess up.

4. Breaking the rules in an SMS marketing campaign.

Solution: There is an alphabet soup of laws or regulatory/advisory organizations that rule the SMS marketing land, including CTIA, MMA and CAN-SPAM. If you break the rules, you could have your campaign shut down along with those of marketers using the same short code. Become familiar with the MMA’s Best Practices (PDF), then for good measure, review the CTIA’s Playbook.

Example: T-Mobile famously blocked all messages from SMS marketing company Ez Texting in 2010 due to alleged violations from a single marketer.

Without a doubt, you will make some mistakes as you expand your mobile marketing efforts, but by following the suggestions above, you’ll avoid mistakes that even the biggest companies have made.

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How to Kick Start Your SMS Marketing Program: A Guide for Small-to-Mid-Sized Businesses

So you’ve got a healthy business, a good marketing plan, and you’re pretty sure you know which half is working. But you can’t shake that nagging voice in the back of your head: “I’m not doing SMS…”

SMS, or text messages, are typically read within 3 minutes of receipt, vs. 48 hours for emails.

Well the voice has a point. SMS is sometimes overlooked, but it remains one of the most powerful marketing techniques: just about every phone can accept text messages, and 90% of text messages are read within 3 minutes! (SinglePoint) Furthermore, US mobile customers prefer offers via text message to those via mobile Web, apps, and voice mail. (DMA UK)

SMS marketing doesn’t have to be difficult…so don’t get discouraged! Here are five steps to help you begin using SMS in your marketing today:

1. What do you want to accomplish? If you run a business, you probably want to drive sales (duh!). But consider that SMS is a much more personal medium than email or even social media to some extent. Think about how you can use the opportunity to grow long-term relationships, and harness the power of SMS beyond a one-off promotion or bulk alert.

2. Get a short code. A short code is a five or six digit number from which you can deliver messages, and consumers can message you back. There are two basic types: dedicated and shared. Dedicated codes are great for maintaining the most control over your brand messaging, but they are costly, so shared codes are often a good bet for small- to mid-sized businesses.

3. Build your opt-in list. SMS marketing is a fantastic tool for driving repeat business, so start by inviting your Facebook fans, Twitter followers, or in-store patrons to text a keyword to your short code to begin receiving offers and alerts. Get off on the right foot by offering an incentive to sign up. Remember, you can’t send anyone a text until they’ve opted in, and you must always give them an easy way to opt out. Check out the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA)’s best practices for more information.

4. Make it personal. These days, even friends have to be careful about mass texting for risk of appearing impersonal, and the same is true for marketers. While you still want to respect your audience’s anonymity, the content should be customized. For example, ask about a customer’s favorite dish or product in the sign-up form, then send a related offer.

5. Optimize. As with any marketing program, it’s important to test and compare. Are you sending most of your texts during the week? Try sending on the weekend and see how this affects response rates. Are some offers being redeemed more often than others? Move the underperformers out and test some new ones.

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Marketing Showdown: Texts vs. Tweets

 

The global marketing race is off, and SMS and Twitter are neck-and-neck…or are they?

If you’re looking for new marketing tactics for your business, you’ve probably already considered using text message marketing and/or social marketing.

Thanks to the recent “mobile boom”, SMS has become the most ubiquitous form of communication, so it’s no wonder why more and more businesses are turning to text messaging to reach their target market.

Twitter has also become a popular form of marketing communication as it allows brands to send messages to other users, who can can then “follow” the brands to receive updates about them.

I came across an infographic comparing Twitter and text messaging as marketing tools, which is what got me thinking about the pros and cons of the two. Here’s what I wanted to share with you:

PROS:

  • Global Internet penetration is over 30% of the world’s population.
  • There are over 100 million active accounts on Twitter.
  • Brands can check up on customers and competition and stay up-to-date on what people are saying about your business online.
  • Brands can tweet sales, promotions, special offers, etc.
  • It doesn’t cost anything for brands to sign up.

CONS:

  • ROI and other results can be hard to measure on Twitter.
  • With Twitter, there are no available segmentation or targeting options. Each post will go to anyone who has followed you—you have no control over your database of followers.
  • One-to-many communication = lack of personalization.

PROS:

  • 90% of the world offers 2G coverage.
  • There are 4.2 billion SMS enabled mobile devices in the world.
  • 95% of messages are read by your subscribers in the first 15 minutes.
  • Marketers can deliver relevant information to a specific audience.
  • SMS allows brands to put together text-based contests, sweepstakes, mobile coupons, etc.
  • With text messaging, brands can segment out their database to target specific audiences.
  • SMS is PROVEN to increase loyalty and customer retention.
  • One-on-one communication: personalized user experience.
  • Measurable results.

CONS:

  • Brands have to entice customers to opt-in to receive text messages, and sometimes customers regard the messages as spam.
  • Creating unique, valuable call-to-actions through text messaging requires time and creative energy.
  • Brands have to pay a mobile marketing company or short-code provider to send out messages to their subscriber database.


What Now?

It’s obvious that both channels are important to growing your business.

With text messaging, you are fostering a one-on-one relationship with your customers. Even though your brand’s text message may go out to thousands of subscribers, it still makes each person feel that one-on-one connection when they receive the text message on their own phone. Also, because of the reach of SMS, you know the message will be read. Tweets, on the other hand, can get lost among the thousands of others in the Tweet feed.

However, if you are deciding between using either one form or the other, instead think about using them together. Both tools should be incorporated into your brand’s marketing strategy, as it is important to develop your database in as many channels as possible.

Each channel has its own advantages and disadvantages, but the more ways to communicate with your target markets the better!

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