How to Make SMS Marketing Part of Your Digital Strategy 

How to Make SMS Marketing Part of Your Digital Strategy 

Words: Belinda Connolly 

If you had a low cost, highly effective, convenient marketing channel that’s easy to personalise and is loved by consumers, you’d surely say, Sign me up. That’s just what customers and digital marketers alike are doing when it comes to SMS marketing.  

With open rates of 98% and the ability to target time-sensitive messages to a highly engaged audience, SMS campaigns are changing the way brands communicate with their audience. 


So, what is best practice for running a successful SMS marketing campaign – while staying on the right side of the (spam) law? Read on to find out. 


Why should I consider SMS marketing for my business?

As well as limitedtime offers, SMS marketing is ideal for launching new products, sharing competitions, and sending birthday offers. For not-for-profit organisations it can be used for profile raising or asking for donations. 


In Australia SMS marketing is hugely successful, with the national open rate sitting at a not-too-shabby 94%. Combine that with the fact that , and it’s clear that creating or refining your SMS marketing strategy makes good business sense.  


Make it personal

Personalisation and SMS marketing go together like butter on toast. The beauty of text messaging is the ease of personalisation; adding a name is super easy and makes the recipient feel like the message is coming from a friend who wants to share a special offer with them. 


More than s, making them more likely to buy. 


And speaking of personalisation: SMS marketing easily allows for segmentation and targeting to provide better engagement. Experts suggest segmenting your audience based on age, gender, location, or occupation to get the best results from your efforts. 


When is the best time to send SMS offers? 

SMS is the ideal tool for sending time-sensitive messages for sales and limited-time offers. This is perfect for EOFY promotions, the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales period, Christmas  offers, and Boxing Day sales. 


Direct, immediate messaging already exudes a sense of urgency, enticing consumers to act quick to take advantage of an offer. The direct line of communication also pays off well for businesses, with an impressive 86.1% of recipients opening SMS messages within 30 minutes of receiving them.


The jury’s out when it comes to determining a single best time of day or day of the week to send out SMS messages. Like social media activity, it depends on your audience behaviours and so will require testing. Start with regular 9-5 business hours and Monday compared to Thursday or Friday. In Australia, you will need to test times within the boundaries of the Spam Act 2003 (see below). 


How do I get customers to open my messages?

Mobile phone messages are more likely to create an immediate action than any other method of communication. Most people have their phone within reach all day, and few of us can resist the siren call of the ping of an incoming text. 


Mailchimp, who traditionally focused on email marketing, now have expanded their service to include SMS marketing. Here are some of Mailchimp’s suggestions to ensure your message gets opened, not deleted 


Name recognition: In a world where people are increasingly suspicious of spam texts it is important to ensure you have good recognition and trust. Use a consistent name that is a true representation of your brand when sending texts – after all, the name you choose is an essential part of your branding.  


For most people, receiving a text with no brand name, just an unfamiliar phone number, is liable to see you blocked and reported as spam, no matter how enticing your offer. 


Timing is everything: No-one wants to feel like they are being spammed. But how often is too often? One report suggests that 60 per cent of consumers who sign up to receive SMS marketing texts expect brands to message them at least weekly. Any more frequent than that and you could see your messages being blocked. 


Choose your incentive wisely: A survey conducted by Yotpo discovered what consumers consider a worthwhile exchange for handing over their mobile number. 


The top three incentives to make people sign up to receive text messages from a brand were: 

  1. 1. Unlocking a one-time discount code (57 per cent) 

  1. 2. Early access to sales or new releases (53 per cent) 

  1. 3. Direct order status and delivery notifications (51 per cent). 


Don’t forget the small print In Australia SMS marketing is guided by the Spam Act 2003, which prohibits the sending of unsolicited commercial electronic messages. Guidelines include:  

  • – Businesses must have express or inferred consent from recipients before sending marketing SMS messages. 

  • – SMS messages must clearly identify the sender and provide contact information. 

  • – Every marketing SMS must include a functional unsubscribe facility. 

  • – Sending your marketing messages between 9am to 8pm on weekdays, 9am to 5pm on Saturdays, and not at all on Sundays. 

Keen to add SMS marketing to your digital strategy, but don’t know where to start? Start by contacting us! As a full-service digital marketing agency, we have the expertise to create the ideal campaign for your brand.  

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