Although online chat options are more commonly used to reach customers, SMS is still a popular way for people to communicate globally. The most efficient way to utilize SMS marketing is to send out personalized text messages considering that it has a 98% open rate. Therefore a well designed personalized SMS campaign is bound to go a long way to help your marketing efforts stand ahead of the competition.
Additionally, with the number of phone users nearing 3 billion worldwide, smartphones are now a virtual extension of people. It is guaranteed that your customers will always have their phones close by 24/7 and check it repeatedly during the day. Thus, making text message personalization an active direct marketing channel, and you are confident that your SMS will get across to your target audience, quickly, and directly.
So how do you create a successful personalized SMS strategy? Here are four ways to help you with your customized SMS campaign.
1. Judge it Right
When sending out personalized text messages, there are a few things you need to bear in mind. Your text content needs to be relevant to the recipient and likewise timely and appropriate. You don't want your SMS campaign coming across as annoying or overbearing.
Try to put into consideration that some of your text recipients reside in different time zones, so you might want to send your messages out in batches instead of sending them all out at once. Also, another tip to timing is to think of your audience's daily habits. What time of the day will they likely be free to check their phone? So, you might want to consider launch breaks, weekends, or late evenings to send out your texts.
We recommend to always ask for an opt-in from a customer to make sure they want to receive SMS content from your business. Consent can be asked by:
- Creating campaign collateral
where you ask customers to text an opt-in keyword to a shortcode. An SMS
example for this could include; "Text YES to 777 to get 20% off!"
- Asking your customers to check an opt-in box, similar to a subscribe button in an email.
Furthermore, if you want to make your customers more at ease and feel like they have an option, you can include the following sections in your texts:
- Expectations: let them know how frequently your message will be
sent and the kind of content they'll receive.
- Opt-out option: inform them clearly
on how they can opt-out in case they no longer want to receive messages.
- Call to action (CTA): add a CTA after your message that encourages customers to act. Another SMS example for this will be: "Click here to confirm enrolment."
2. Accuracy Amounts to Responsiveness
The essence of sending out a personalized message is to make your recipient feel like you know them personally. Therefore, your details must be accurate. It's a great idea to integrate your business CRM system with the messaging platform that you use. Depending on the information collected, you can send messages using demographics, purchase history, or location. You can also gather the right information by ensuring you provide enough fields on the signup form, so people write their names correctly as they are spelled.
Minor details, such as the G's capitalization in MacGregor (for those who spell theirs that way) or Johnnie vs. Johnny, are what captures your recipients' attention and sets you apart from other brands that fail to pay attention. You should also provide your customers with an easy way to upgrade records if their details change.
3. Slide in the Freebies and Promotional SMS
Everyone loves free stuff, so what surer way is there to get a response than to slide in discounts or promos? A significant benefit of mobile SMS marketing is that you can include links to your content that will redirect your recipients to the actual page you want them to visit.
Therefore, when sending your message, you can include links to exciting viral challenges, polls, quizzes, or giveaways that enable you to engage with them directly. An example of such an SMS campaign is Starbucks' use of trivia games, quirky memes, and personalized rewards to delight customers. Their campaign from 2013 taps into the high text message open rates by rewarding the first 100 correct responders.
Also, you can send your recipients codes that will qualify them for promos or discounts. Besides the campaigns and giveaways, you can design codes or links for loyalty programs to give gift cards, discounts, appreciation notes, exclusive offers, and other freebies. The gesture is bound to make them feel appreciated and refer others to your brand.
4. Keep it Fresh and Fun!
SMS is a very personal and informal channel, making it excellent for entertaining personalized text marketing campaigns. You can use it as an avenue to deliver fun content and provide a memorable customer experience. Some marketers make use of shortened texts when sending out SMS. Thus, you can use abbreviations such as "ur" for your "txt" for text, "FTW," for the win, etc. However, when using such abbreviations, please keep it to a minimum and do not let it compromise on message clarity and readability.
When creating your
personalized text messages campaign, make sure that your brand's voice stays
consistent in each SMS you send out. Also, keep your texts simple and straight
to the point but with extended links where recipients can get more info. Please
make sure you apply best practices in addition to these tips above to help make
SMS marketing work for your brand and generate more revenue.