In a recent survey, we learned that 63 percent of respondents said they would actually switch to a company that offered text messaging as a communication channel. So why is reaching customers via SMS marketing campaigns a surefire way to boost your overall marketing efforts? SMS messages allow you communicate with your customers in real time, reaching them exactly where they are with these SMS marketing examples and use cases.
Text messaging’s near-perfect open rate (98 percent) puts other channels to shame. (Email’s average open rate is only 20 percent by comparison.) Marketers would be remiss if they didn’t integrate some texting into their campaigns. But you may be wondering how to use SMS in your marketing campaigns.
We’ve put together a list of the 15 of the most common SMS marketing messages use cases and examples:
Table of Contents
1. Content sharing:
Most marketers are familiar with the value of content marketing, but sending content via text is somewhat new. But just like email content marketing, this is one of those SMS marketing use cases that builds relationships and keeps customers engaged. Texting fun or valuable content (always highly targeted) can be a powerful tool to reach customers and keep your brand top of mind.
Recently, beverage brand Ghia began using SMS to have back-and-forth conversations with customers. Ghia’s goal was to create “moments of delight” by sending Spotify playlists and other content to customers. The result? The brand saw an instant positive response. And in the end, loyal and engaged customers are more likely to think of your brand when they’re ready to shop.
Content Sharing with SMS Marketing Example:
SMS marketing can be a great way to connect with your customers and share content with them, but it's important to make sure that the content you're sharing is interesting and engaging. Here's an example of SMS marketing that was successful in getting people to engage with the content:
Hello, from Avochato 🥑! Be sure to check out our latest blog post on 15 SMS Marketing Examples & Use Cases. 👍
The key to success with SMS marketing is keeping your content short, sweet, and relevant to your customers.
2. Polls & Surveys:
Polls and Surveys via text is a strategy that pulls double duty. It’s a great way to gauge the temperature of your audience by asking for their opinion. (What do they think of the new proposed product design? Of all your brand’s flavors, which is their favorite?) It’s also the perfect way to engage your audience by making them feel like they’re part of your brand’s decisions.
Poll and Survey Marketing Example
One great way to use text messaging for surveys is by sending out a short poll to customers after they make a purchase. This can help you gather feedback on customer satisfaction and see how well your product or service met their expectations. You can also use surveys to get feedback on new products or services before they're released, or to collect data on customer preferences.
3. Flash sales:
Knowing your texts will probably be read within three seconds makes time-sensitive sales possible — and even more when your customers have push notifications turned on. Flash sales are a great way to sprinkle a sense of urgency into your marketing campaigns with speed that no other channel can match. Texting means quicker open times and faster responses to your campaign, especially when SMS gives you a good chance of reaching your audience quickly.
Flash Sales SMS Marketing Examples
Some great examples of flash sales SMS marketing include:
- Offering a discount for a limited time only – this creates a sense of urgency and encourages customers to take advantage of the offer before it expires.
- Sending out exclusive coupons or promo codes – this personalizes the message and makes recipients feel special.
Giveaways, of course, are one of the most well-known SMS marketing use cases. This strategy is a useful tool to grow your SMS contact list and gather contact information from potential leads if nothing else. In return for their opt-in, you can offer your audience a chance to win a trip or package that fits with your brand.
Giveaway SMS Marketing Example
Don't miss out on this incredible opportunity! Enter now for a chance to win Avochato free for a year!
To enter, simply text "GIVEAWAY" to 345345 and you'll be automatically entered for a chance to win.
*NOT A REAL GIVEAWAY*
5. Drip campaigns:
SMS Drip campaigns are some of the marketers’ best tools to extract the most efficiency out of marketing technology. A drip SMS campaign, just like drip campaigns on email marketing, runs as automated messages that are triggered by segmentation in your list and run behind the scenes while your marketing team focuses their daily efforts on strengthening relationships with customers.
Use SMS drip campaigns to nurture leads through the funnel or welcome new subscribers or for any number of creative, engaging communications you can think of.
Example Drip Campaign SMS Marketing Messages:
One great way to use text messaging for drip campaigns is by sending out a series of automated messages that are triggered by segmentation in your list. This can start with something as simple as welcoming new subscribers, moving on to more nurturing messages further down the funnel. You can also use drip campaigns to send out exclusive coupons or promo codes, or to collect data on customer preferences.
6. Lead nurture campaigns:
As an automated campaign, this is another of those SMS marketing use cases that runs in the background. A lead nurture campaign that operated via text is highly segmented and has a much higher chance of being seen by recipients. With SMS, nurturing your leads down the funnel is no longer a shot in the dark. Text messages have higher open rates than email by far and can therefore likely guarantee more consideration from your leads than an email campaign.
Lead nurturing SMS marketing campaign
Lead nurturing is a great way to get ahead of a customers’ needs by building a relationship with them before they’re even ready to buy. You can use text messages to keep your brand top of mind and nurture leads through the funnel until they’re ready to make a purchase.
Something as simple as offering help or advice related to your product or service can go a long way in building trust with potential customers.
7. New product launch:
When you launch a new product or service, you want your customers to know now. Not tomorrow, not next week. Immediacy matters, especially if you’re looking to give your loyal SMS subscribers a shot to get the product before anyone else. Texts tend to be read in the first few minutes of receiving them, so if you want to offer any customers first dibs or let them know early about your product launch, there’s no better way than via text.
Product Launch SMS Marketing Examples:
- It's here! The long-awaited sequel to our best-selling book is finally available. Be one of the first to get your hands on it by pre-ordering now!
- "Product launch" in 48 hours! Get a sneak peek now and be the first to know when it becomes available.
- We're excited to announce the launch of our new product! pre-order now and get 20% off your purchase.
- Be the first to know about our new product launch! Text "LAUNCH" to 345345 now to get on the list.
8. Direct texting:
One of the benefits of texting your customers is that it creates a relationship that encourages two-way conversations. They’re free to ask questions when they like. By creating a campaign via text that encourages them to text — maybe they text for make-up advice or to speak directly with a doctor — marketers can generate some powerful customer experiences.
Direct Text SMS Examples
- Need help finding the right shade of foundation? Text "FIND" to 345345 now and our experts will help you out.
- Have a question about your health insurance coverage? Text "COVERAGE" to 555-555-1234 now and we'll answer all of your questions.
- Stuck in traffic? Text "TRAFFIC" to 555-1234 now and we'll give you an update on the situation.
9. Two-way messaging:
Two-way conversations are one of the hallmarks of SMS marketing. It’s the simple idea that your marketing team can converse with customers one-to-one and in real time that makes texting so revolutionary. Customers today want to be able to reach you when they have questions, and they want to know your brand is made up of people, not bots. Using texting to message back and forth, whether it’s for customer service or for purchasing advice, makes the experience feel personal and even more engaging than other channels can.
Two-way Messaging Example:
In an example of two-way messaging done right, Cann, creator of the first cannabis-infused social tonic, used a unique branded character to engage consumers through live chat. The team sent messages from a character called Ms. Lemon Lavender — named for two of the brand’s most popular tonic flavors — and delivered a fun experience that customers looked forward to. Thanks in part to this creative live chat strategy, Cann’s targeted messages and the team’s real-time responses, the company doubled its repurchase rates on its most popular platform.
10. Appointment reminders:
Sending automated reminders for upcoming appointments has taken off as one of the most popular SMS marketing use cases. This is in part due to customer demand.
Seventy-six percent of consumers in a recent survey found it helpful to receive appointment reminders via text. Appointment reminders have not only become desired but expected, they’ve turned out to be powerful tools for marketers looking to strengthen the bond between the brand and the customer. This type of marketing is extremely helpful for service businesses, whether it’s a doctor’s appointment or a haircut.
Appointment Reminder SMS Examples:
- It's time for your appointment! Please reply "CONFIRM" to this message to let us know you're still coming, or "CANCEL" if you need to reschedule. We'll be waiting for you!
- You have an appointment with Dr. Smith on Wednesday, June 12th at 3 PM. Please reply "CONFIRM" to confirm this appointment.
- You have a hair appointment with Ashley at Salon XYZ on Friday at 2 PM. Please reply "CANCEL" if you need to cancel this appointment.
- You have a meeting with John Doe from ABC Corporation on Monday at 10 AM. Please reply "RESCHEDULE" if you need to reschedule this meeting.
11. Delivery tracking:
Tracking packages that are being delivered may not seem like a marketing function, but when done well — with good branding and attention to detail — something as simple as tracking a package has the potential to grow the relationship with customers. SMS marketing is all about making the customer experience a better one, and keeping tabs on where a delivery is shows that you have enough transparency and forethought to care whether your customer receives what they’ve purchased.
Delivery Tracking SMS Examples:
There is nothing better than the security of knowing that your package has arrived safe and secure, and your customers will love you for it.
- Your order has shipped! You can track its progress here: ____________.
- Your package will be delivered on ___________. Track your delivery here: ______________.
- Your Delivery has made it safe! We hope you enjoy your XYZ Product, and if you have any questions you can always text us.
As far as SMS marketing use cases go, this is probably the most common. The age-old strategy to supercharge marketing efforts by sending a promotional code is still effective, and using SMS only elevates this marketing strategy.
You can reach customers who have opted into your SMS marketing comms with exclusive codes, free gifts, hefty discounts and exclusive access. The exclusivity of this group is what makes it so powerful and so rewarding for your customers and leads on the receiving end.
Promotion SMS Marketing Example
- Hey it's Joe from XYZ Store. Thanks for opting in to our SMS list! Here's a 20% off coupon for your next purchase. Show this text at checkout or enter the code "XXXXXX" online.Thanks for being a loyal customer!
- To show our appreciation, here's a coupon for 15% off your next purchase. Show this text at checkout or enter the code "XXXXXX" online.
13. Abandoned cart reminders:
The shopping cart reminder is an ecommerce strategy almost as old as the shopping cart itself. When a customer shops but abandons the cart before purchasing, this little tool steps in to gently remind them to finish their purchase. But imagine sending a reminder to your customer that they’ve left something in their cart and being confident they will see the message almost immediately. Nine out of 10 people read the texts they receive within the first three seconds. Three seconds. It’s hard to believe there was ever a time when we thought email was the best way to send shopping cart reminders with numbers like that.
Abandoned cart SMS marketing examples
- Did you forget something? You still have items in your shopping cart. Complete your purchase here: ______________.
- We noticed you left some items in your shopping cart. Complete your purchase and we'll get them shipped out to you right away!
- You still have items in your shopping cart! Here's a coupon for 10% off your purchase. Complete your order here: ____________.
14. Birthday messages:
Sending messages with special deals that are perfectly tailored to a specific customer based on their preferences is one of the best ways to delight customers. Sending a birthday wish or a special deal via text is a quick and convenient marketing strategy. And it makes perfect sense: Who doesn’t like a special treat on their birthday, especially if it includes a personalized offer? But your chances of eliciting a purchase are greater with text since nearly every single person is likely to open your text messages (and only one out of every five people is likely to open if you send it as an email).
Birthday SMS Marketing Examples
- Happy Birthday! Here's a coupon for 20% off your next purchase. Show this text at checkout or enter the code "XXXXXX" online.
- Wishing you a very happy birthday! As a special treat, here's a coupon for 10% off your next order.
- On your special day, enjoy a free cookie next time your are in our store! Just show this text at checkout, No purchase necessary!
15. Text-based shopping:
Sometimes, it pays to get creative with your SMS marketing strategies. Allowing customers to purchase directly through SMS is one way to eliminate all that purchasing friction you can encounter online.
Text-Based Shopping Example
Brook & Bull winery, for example, created "the easiest wine buying you've ever experienced.” How? By letting customers order wine through SMS. And it pays off: Half of Brook & Bull’s purchases come from texts even though their opt-in list is a tenth the size of their email list. Direct purchasing via text is a creative, powerful and effective way to offer exactly what customers are looking for: convenience.
Which of these SMS marketing examples & use cases are you ready to try?
Take a look at some of the features that can help you engage in dialogue, work smarter and communicate better with customers with text message marketing. Or, jump right in with a free trial with Avochato, the best sms marketing software on the market!
With the right sms marketing strategy, you can stay top of mind, keep customers happy and help your business grow!