Do you want to make the most out of your SMS marketing campaign? Most people spend at least four to six hours on mobile phones.
This shows that you need to leverage SMS marketing to reach more customers and increase sales volume. Read on for some SMS marketing trends you should catch up with.
1. More growth of SMS as a customer service channel
Customer service has a crucial supporting role in a company’s marketing departments. It helps brands deliver on their promise. Clients expect accurate responses to their queries, and they will not hesitate to share their negative experiences on social media networks.
According to a recent study, over 50 per cent of consumers prefer contacting an organization’s customer support representatives via SMS over phone calls or emails, leading to the growth of SMS marketing. The following are some customer service functions SMS can facilitate:
- Providing customer delivery tracking information
- Sending payment receipts and order confirmations
- Rescheduling appointments and sending appointment reminders
- Answering the frequently asked questions
- Requesting service and product feedback
Texting customer support allows clients with a mobile gadget to settle issues quickly without enduring transfers or long hold periods. Faster resolution time via SMS boosts customer trust, enabling you to achieve the company’s bottom line.
2. SMS marketing is outgrowing email marketing
SMS messages have an open rate of 98 per cent with a 45 per cent response rate. On the other hand, emails have a 20 per cent open rate and a response rate of 6 per cent.
In the past, businesses viewed communicating with clients via text messages as unprofessional and invasive, preferring emails. However, this perception has since changed as SMS is an easier and faster channel to read messages.
Most people also tend to ignore company emails but will read through a text message within three minutes of receiving it. As a result, almost all brands have incorporated SMS marketing in their strategy, especially when sharing real-time updates such as order delivery, order dispatch, or order confirmation.
SMS marketing is expected to intensify going forward, so you should consider reaching out to Rich Communication Services to help you transform your company’s SMS functionality with enhanced features that provide an engaging, intuitive, and meaningful experience to your customers.
3. Increased preference for two-way SMS communication
Businesses no longer want to speak to customers. They now prefer speaking with their clients. Although the ultimate goal of SMS marketing is to drive sales, exchanging conversations with clients gives the communication a human touch.
Often, clients have queries they want solutions to or want to engage deeper with the brands to know more. This is not always possible with scripted or automated messages, necessitating businesses to provide an option for clients to reply to text messages.
Here are ways two-way SMSes can benefit your organization:
- Allows you to nurture long-term client relationships
- Adds warmth to your customer interactions
- It helps reduce customer anxiety as they are sure they are conversing with a real person and not a machine.
- Enables you to revive abandoned cart sales
- Provides you with cross-sell and upsell opportunities
4. The client’s demand to receive SMS messages has increased
The COVID-19 pandemic has seen people spend more time indoors. Receiving a warm message from you makes them feel connected to the outside world.
It also leaves a positive impact on your business in your client’s mind, as it shows that you care. The quarantine period is the perfect time to market your company’s products and services via text messages.
5. Increased demand for personalized SMS marketing
Approximately 72 per cent of your customers will only engage you when your marketing strategy is tailored to their needs.
Whether you are offering incentives or sharing recommendations, customers need to feel that you are aware of their interests. This can be achieved by adding a personal touch to outbound messages, which triggers them to connect to your brand and take the desired action.
Personalization is one of the biggest trends in SMS marketing and has gained dominance across industries and businesses.
6. SMS is the preferred channel for transactional and informational updates
Most businesses, including cab services, food delivery apps, and clothing stores, share updates via text messages. 91 per cent of customers have also expressed that they prefer receiving communication from organizations via SMS.
Whether sending announcements about annual sales or providing real-time updates about orders, text messages have become the most preferred mode of communication between organizations and their clients.
Since text messages are short, quick, handy, and instant, they are easy to keep up with and follow. Below are instances where organizations rely on text messages to communicate critical information to clients:
- When there are changes in management or ownership
- When the company has made a significant milestone and wants to celebrate
- When the company’s site experiences downtime due to maintenance purposes. This is common for financial institutions such as banks.
- When an institution needs to make a public apology
7. SMS has become one of the leading revenue-generating channels
Businesses are considering the SMS’s potential to generate revenue. Organizations can use text messages to welcome new clients, nurture leads from abandoned carts and even offer incentives to trigger a potential customer to make a purchasing decision.
SMS also reduces the reliance on third-party cookies as brands can collect information directly from clients, providing you with revenue generation opportunities. Other reasons why SMS marketing can help your business generate more revenue include:
- Introduction of mobile money payments, which make it easy for clients to shop from their smartphones
- Text messages have a higher potential for personalization than other modes of communication
- A significant number of customers now prefer business to communicate via text messages
8. Upgrade from SMS to MMS
Corporations are upgrading to Multimedia Messaging Service(MMS) to drive more growth routes. The continued growth in texting technology allows businesses to advance upon text limitations, enabling them to send longer and more dynamic media-rich content via MMS.
Compared to SMS, MMS has a 15 per cent higher click-through rate and 20 per cent fewer chances of driving customers to opt out of receiving brand messages. MMS content is also eight times more likely to be presented to family and friends or shared on social media, increasing the probability of driving more sales or achieving the desired outcome.
9. Adoption of SMS marketing among B2B companies
B2B entities have been slower to incorporate SMS in their marketing strategy than B2C marketers. However, the popularity of SMS marketing is beneficial even for the B2B industry.
B2B marketers use targeted campaigns and build relationships to attract and convert leads into paying customers. However, sending chunks of emails or cold calls hardly gets through to busy clients and feels impersonal. This has necessitated B2B marketers to use SMS to:
- Communicate order logistics and updates
- Send service and product updates
B2B companies also leverage SMS marketing as a productivity tool. Through text messages, marketers can answer FAQs, schedule webinars and demos, and offer incentives to boost clients’ lifetime value.
10. Increased use of SMS sender ID
Businesses are now employing a naming identifier or sender ID to increase and build trust with potential and existing customers when sending text messages. The sender ID or name identifier is the name that appears on clients’ phones whenever you text them.
The popularity and capability of SMS marketing are fast rising. Familiarize yourself with the above trends to avoid being left behind.
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I am Adeyemi Adetilewa, a media consultant, entrepreneur, husband, and father. Founder and Editor-In-Chief of Ideas Plus Business Magazine, online business resources for entrepreneurs. I help brands share unique and impactful stories through the use of public relations, advertising, and online marketing. My work has been featured on the Huffington Post, Thrive Global, Addicted2Success, Hackernoon, The Good Men Project, and other publications.