With an influx of mediums and technologies, we are swamped with ways to market to our potential customer base, the list is becoming endless. Email, Twitter, Linked In, Radio, et al. However, there may be one area you are missing that is more obvious than most. Did you know that one of the most effective ways to engage with your existing and potential client base is via text message?
The biggest issue we find with email communication is the assurance that the mail will not only be delivered, but also read. Think about it for a moment – how quickly do you check and read a text message compared to an email which is quickly deleted or a Social Media update perhaps left til a lunch break? Reaching 95% of UK mobile users and up to 5 billion people worldwide, the humble text message is one of the most trusted and effective forms of modern day communication.
Reach a Broad Consumer Base With Ease.
The temptation in today’s Mobile World is to go ahead with something smart, innovative, and ultimately – costly. With so many considerations and challenges with mobile – namely the “Apple vs. Android” conundrum and what suits each phone/operating system and poses many issues. And of course, in the US especially, a large number of users still don’t have or use a smartphone at all, finding the basic functions of the older models more than capable of fulfilling their needs.
A text message on the other hand, is relatively inexpensive, and compatible on all devices, smartphone or otherwise. For small medium businesses with perhaps a smaller marketing budget than the larger corporations, text messaging should be a great tool in addition to their arsenal going forward.
Although it is an easy method of reaching your customer base, as always (and more so with texting) content should always be at the forefront of your consideration. Firstly, you have a limited number of characters to work with, so be concise without losing important information.
Using a mobile as a form of contact is always deemed rather personal, and it is crucial the content is in no way deemed “spammy” to the receiver. Add in too much generic sales jargon and you instantly switch off your audience and taint your brand. By focusing on a customer service angle, you are intent in improving customer experience, and the best sort of customer is of the loyal variety – thus increasing sales as an indirect result.
Use text messaging as a means to save them time, and ease their purchase. Text receipts for example for travel companies, alerts that your transport is running late, your food order is on its way, then using a text to rate the service for experience (an easy 1-5 or request a call back scenario).
Service alerts and reminders are another great angle to take, and another indirect sales method that could work for your business. Maintain an opt in mobile list for customers that are interested in your services and potential last minute deals and offers. Hair salons with cancellations on a much sought after slot on a weekend, a new delivery or last minute rush of sale on products you can see that they have purchased previously. Not only do you have a happy customer for the thoughtful update, but you could add revenue you might have previously missed out on.
Everyone appreciates an effort to make their lives a little easier, and text messages are a quick and simple way of doing just that.
Integrate with Social Media.
You may or may not already have a location based campaign linked to your business, encouraging your base to use mobile apps to “check in” at your location for the opportunity to get offers and discounts sent to their phone. This form of marketing gives you an ‘opt in’ mobile list right at the point of sale. You can use this information to tailor offers to past geographical location and past purchase history, and use this information to provide services and products that will interest them most.
The key to successful text message marketing, is that you have permission to contact customers in this rather intimate personal way – and those that are using your mobile check in are waving from afar, letting you know they are open to SMS marketing. When broached with careful content, there is a field of potential consumers ready and waiting for your text.
[image via seekersportal.wordpress.com]