Mobile phones or smartphones are ubiquitous elements in our lives. Their smart functionality has bought radical changes to daily routines. Hence we see marketers putting a lot of emphasis on mobile-based communications, particularly SMS campaigns, as they still have wide reach and readability. They are also cost-effective and assure adequate ROI versus other traditional mediums.
However, with so much competition between the brands, it very important that your SMS communication stands out from the clutter and is read by your target audience. What you need to include is enticing offers, calls-to-action, and subscribe to and opt-out options. Also be mindful of the channels/SMS gateways you choose to send out your messages. Make sure you route your messages through Tier-I connections, as they are more legitimate mobile networks. Along with the above recommendations, let’s look at key pointers that will help you strengthen your SMS campaigns:
Design relevant content that needs to be sent out to your customers. It needs to be in sync with the core message that the brand or product wants to convey. Any form of irrelevant and ambiguous information will go unread and may also irk your audience. It is advisable to send across product- and brand-related information about sales, promotional offers and events, etc.
Schedule your messages according to your audience preferences. When messages are sent early in the morning or late in the night, it can cause displeasure and invade the privacy of the customer. Hence, it is advisable to bear this thumb rule in mind while sending out messages – no promotional messages should be sent before 9 AM and post 8 PM.
Time is of the essence when it comes to rolling out bulk SMS notifications. Hence, sending notifications via SMS more frequently during a specific promotional offer or when the likelihood of a sale/purchase is high works wonders. Also, it is judicious to send messages on a frequent basis as it clears away the danger of the ‘out-of-sight-out-of-mind’ phenomenon.
A message that is cluttered with too much information will eventually lead to ambiguity and a lack of action from the customer. The core message needs to stand out and not get drowned in a sea of unnecessary words. An easy way to achieve a high success rate is to formulate short messages showcasing the core message and thereby seizing the customer’s attention.
It is advisable to stay away from the general SMS lingo involving abbreviations. The use of abbreviations gives an unprofessional feel and may cause confusion.
The quintessence of any marketing campaign is to place the company’s presence up front and centre. One must not lose out on a chance to market your company website. The use of embedded links within the SMS notification offers an interactive and immediate option for the customer to check out the products, offers, or services, eventually converting them into sales. Try using link shorteners for embedding links so that the character limit is not exhausted.
Two-word keywords generally bring with them a streak of confusion. Many people get confused whether to space out the two words or use them as they stand. For example, if the keyword is “stirfry”, many would type it as “stir-fry”. Best would be to use a single keyword.
The mention of an attractive and useful offer aids in eliciting a positive action from the customer. A few simple ways to do this is by capitalizing the promotional code, coupons, or any other salient feature. For example – “10 percent DISCOUNT”.
A powerful way to create a bond between the customer and the company is adding the personalized element to the SMS. It is a universal fact that customers like to feel special, and a personalized message definitely enhances the connection between you and them. Including their name or mentioning their last visit to your store in the message body makes the SMS look less like a mass-produced mode of communication.
Mentioning your company’s social media profiles strengthens your position in creating new sales and also offering post-sale services if any. Customers should always be encouraged to visit, like, comment, and share your products, services, offers, and much more.
These are some points of consideration that will help you reach your target audience in the most effective and efficient manner. Make a note – a sound marketing campaign ensures higher customer engagement and revenues.
Rajdip Gupta is the Managing Director and Group Chief Executive Officer of Route Mobile Limited.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)