Promoting Marketing Campaigns Using Text Messaging

Short message service, also referred to as SMS, is a new way of marketing to an already existing clientele, or customer base. Prior to SMS, businesses typically sent emails to their clientele marketing their discounts or special offers through companies like GetResponse. Although email marketing works, SMS provides businesses with a quicker, more personal way of reaching customers because it relies communicating via cellular phones.
SMS Involves Sending Bulk Text Messages
To work, businesses must have customers’ cellular phone numbers. Typically, companies obtain customers’ cell phone numbers when they sign up for services, complete a contract or at the point of sale. To avoid any conflict or customer complaints, businesses receive customers’ permission to contact them via SMS.
Using SMS can be completed through a professional marketing organization, SMS provider or in house (a company’s marketing department). The professional marketing organization or in house department compiles the cellular phone numbers into an online control panel or database.
The process involves preparing at least one text message. The text message could offer customers special rates, discounts or deals on a product or service. The message could also inform customers about new services or products the business maybe offering.
Companies sign up for a “shortcode” which consists of a numerical code like 12345 through a SMS messaging provider. Along with the shortcode businesses create a special keyword such as “discount”, “coupon” or “offer.”
Once the marketing campaign is ready, businesses distribute the campaign via SMS to customers. For example, a real estate company promoting new house listings may use SMS to reach clients immediately. Also, businesses like restaurants may send a SMS promoting free appetizers before dinner only on Tuesdays.
Disadvantages and Advantages of Using SMS
Employing SMS has many advantages for both businesses and customers. Yes, SMS does have a downside. For instance, there are limitations to SMS marketing. Companies can only use approximately 165 characters-- not words-- when promoting their discounts, services or special offers. Thus, businesses must be precise when employing SMS as their way of marketing to customers. Too many texts messages in a row can disinterest customers and make the marketing campaign seem poorly planned or overly aggressive.
However, the advantages may outweigh any disadvantages. For example, businesses may obtain new customers by placing an advertisement about their VIP club offers in their windows. Also, it’s a cheap way of reaching people. Unlike sending emails, individuals may be more likely to open a text message than an email. Even if loyal customers faithfully open emails, the marketing campaigns may be intercepted by an unauthorized party or sent to spam instead of the inbox. Thus, the marketing promotion is lost. With SMS, that doesn’t happen.