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5 Hacks for Writing Effective SMS Copy

 BONUS MATERIAL: The Psychology of SMS Marketing

The vast majority of marketers who use SMS in their marketing campaigns can agree that SMS marketing is truly an effective tool to deliver your message to your audience. According to recent research, texting is one of the most engaging mediums, with open rates exceeding 82%. As much as 90% of people read their text messages within three minutes after receiving them.

Learn more about SMS marketing in our expert's guide!

Another interesting fact about text messages is that consumers want to get them. For instance, 52% of consumers would prefer texting over other methods of communication. They want to get messages about their order status, as well as appointment reminders or reservation confirmations.

SMS is a great channel in terms of speed of consumption and penetration. However, one of the main advantages of SMS is flexibility. SMS campaigns are the key touchpoints in the customer lifecycle

SMS can help you engage with consumers, encouraging them to activate the product or to download an app. Text messages also enable you to make sure that your customers will read important information about your services or products. This medium is a great choice for campaigns of any kind: promotional, welcome, loyalty, transactional, triggered, etc.

However, if you want SMS to work for you, you must make sure that your text messages are effective. Given that the SMS format doesn’t allow you to write a lot of text, you should be able to express your ideas concisely, while also making sure that your SMS copy is compelling and engaging. This goal may be difficult to achieve so we prepared some useful tips that will help you improve your SMS copy and develop an SMS campaign that will increase your sales. 

1.   Research Your Audience

The first thing you should do is to think about your recipients and to adjust your message to their needs and preferences. The audience must determine the style and tone of your messages. For example, when texting your boss, you probably use a much more formal language than when texting your friends. Therefore, we recommend that you research your audience before writing your SMS copy.

Unfortunately, it’s not always possible to get to know each one of your customers. Therefore, you need to analyze the available data and create a marketing persona. 

2.   Determine the Right Delivery Time

You should message your customers regularly to stay close to them. However, you should also make sure that your messages are not annoying. Therefore, people must receive messages at the right time so that they won’t ignore you. We recommend that you start small. For example, you can text your customers about five times a month. Focus on the strongest content and deliver it first. After one or two months, you can increase the number of messages.

A great approach is to schedule your messages depending on your target audience’s activity and send them automatically. You can also use various applications that will enable you to launch a campaign when your customer takes a specific action. Generally, the best time to send SMS is between noon and 3 pm. 

3.   Keep It Simple

The main reason why so many people like SMS is that their short format forces the sender to get straight to the point. SMS is different from emails and social media messages because you don’t have enough space for long openings and closings. We recommend that you use this simplicity to your advantage. Just present the necessary information — that’s all you have to do.

Include a clear call to action. Write a few introductory words and add the necessary link. Your link may lead the recipient to a more detailed call to action on your landing page.

Although, you can’t use anchor texts for links, you can still add a clickable URL to your site. Also, if your landing page URL is too long, you can use tools like Bitly or Rebrandly to make it shorter and more convenient. Bitly allows you to customize the path of the link, so all you have to do is to sign up and convert your long URL into a shorter version. For example, your SMS might look like this:

“Click to get your 20% discount on the next purchase TODAY!”


Although your SMS must be short, it doesn’t mean that you can use various abbreviations that are common in informal conversations. Avoid such abbreviations and acronyms as “LOL,” “C U,” “B4,” etc., because they will damage the professional image of your brand. We also recommend that you don’t write your SMS in all caps.


4.   Make Your Messages Feel Urgent and Exclusive

You can get the best response from your recipients if you use their fear of missing out (FOMO). Create a sense of exclusivity so that the recipients can feel lucky to learn about your offer. For example, you can brand your SMS campaign as “VIP” or address your recipients by their names. You may also say that your offer is for a few lucky members who were selected randomly.

Your recipients will also be motivated to take advantage of your offers if your SMS feel urgent. Tell your audience that your offer is about to expire. For example, you can use such phrases as “today only,” “limited time offer,” “one-time-only,” etc. For instance, your SMS might look like this:

“Hi John! Are you feeling lucky today? You were randomly selected to get a 50% discount on all accessories. Tap here to claim your discount! Today only!”


5.   Create Two-Way Conversations

The best way to engage your audience is to not only talk to them but also to encourage them to talk to you. You can send your customers various kinds of messages, including promotions, reminders, and surveys. Don’t make them feel that your message is the end of the conversation. Interact with your customers by encouraging them to leave comments and to ask questions. 

For example, your message might look like this:

“Hi John, how are you enjoying our products? Contact us if you have any questions or want to learn about our special offers.”

You can also provide support via text messages, ensuring the best customer experience. Your customers will be able to ask questions when it’s convenient for them. 

We also suggest that you text your customers consistently. Unless your metrics show that your campaign needs some improvement, stick with a consistent tone, schedule, and message type. 

Wrapping Up 

When it comes to marketing and customer support, SMS is a very effective medium. The short format of text messages allows you to get straight to the point, offering the most important information at the right time. We suggest that you research your audience before launching an SMS campaign so that you can choose the right tone and focus on offers that are most likely to drive profits.

Consumers like text messages and you should use them to your advantage. Stick with simple messages and build them around a clear call to action. Make your offers feel exclusive and urgent, and you will see that SMS campaigns demonstrate great results. Besides, they are cost-effective, so even small businesses can appreciate the advantages of SMS marketing.


Rhonda Martinez is a marketing manager, blogger and writer at LegitWritingServices, Reddit’s most popular essay writing services review site. As an avid writer, she is also a freelance copywriter and editor for a number of different edtech startups. Apart from writing, Rhonda is passionate about building strong brands through market research, strategic planning and smart product development.

Rhonda Martinez
2020-02-11 00:00:00 UTC