Take a look at your phone. How many unread emails do you have? How many missed phone calls? Finally, how many unread text messages do you have? If you’re like me you’ve got a ton of unread emails and missed phone calls and close to zero unread text messagesIn this day and age, people prefer quick, concise communication on their own terms and that’s why your business should consider using business text messaging to communicate with their customers.
Small business owners can use business text messaging to send messages to their customers, leads, and employees from their business phone number. Lots of small businesses use email to generate new customers, and all of them should consider adding business text messaging to their marketing strategy.
The easiest place to start is to add SMS marketing to your existing marketing programs. Adding a daily promotional text message to your marketing strategy will only take a few minutes but could increase your sales exponentially.
In this post, we’ll discuss why you should add business text messaging to your marketing strategy.
Text messages are direct and more likely to be opened
I still have emails sitting in my inbox unopened from last month, but when I get a text message I almost always read it immediately. It turns out, this is common for most people.
In fact, 90% of text messages are opened and read in the first 3 seconds after they are received and the average open rate for email is around 20%, while the open rate for text messages is 98%.
Oftentimes, the read rate for text messages is even higher because like push notifications people can read them without unlocking their phone. In the age of social media, people are used to consuming short snippets of content and text messages fit that mold nicely. Not only do text messages have a higher open rate but they also have a higher response rate. Response rates for SMS hover around 45% while email lags behind at 6%.
Text message’s high open rate and response rate make it the perfect channel for many different types of marketing campaigns. Text message marketing can be used to send special offers to your most loyal customers or you can use text messages to notify your customers of flash sales you may be having on certain products.
One important thing to remember is that you need to be sending valuable offers to your customers.
If your text messages are spammy or not relevant then your number is going to get blocked. If you send your customers valuable special offers and messages then they’ll add you to their contact lists like one of their close friends.
Text messaging is faster and easier than other forms of communication
When I have a time-sensitive message to share with a friend I always share that message with them over a text message. While some people believe that phone calls are better for personal communication, that is far from the norm. By sending a text message I can almost guarantee that the recipient will see the message in real-time.
They can often respond quickly even if they are somewhere where they are not able to answer a phone call. Why I prefer a text message over a phone call with my friends is the same reason that you should choose a text message over a phone call with your customers.
In this day and age when almost everyone has a smartphone and social media is commonplace, text messages are preferred since they are faster and easier. Not to mention, if your business wants to send a time-sensitive message out to hundreds of customers at the same time, it would take you hours to call everyone on your contact list.
You could share that same message with that list of phone numbers in a matter of minutes.
If you were to receive a bunch of rapid responses you could easily write back to each customer as they came in instead of having to field a bunch of phone calls taking up even more of your time.
Text messages feel more personal
The lines between personal life and work-life are blurring, so it makes sense that people’s preferences for work communication would mirror their personal preferences.
Text messaging has already surpassed the phone call when it comes to personal communication, and it’s not long before it surpasses the phone call in a work setting as well.
When communicating on a personal channel it’s important to keep your message personal. Don’t spam people’s mobile phones with spammy marketing offers. Unlike social media, where people can easily ignore your message, most text messages are ready by their recipients.
The best way to keep things personal is to treat every text conversation as a personal dialogue. Don’t be afraid to use MMS to send photos or use emojis in your conversations and remember that when people give your business their phone number or email address they are trusting that your business will use it responsibly.
Text messages are becoming the norm
There are many similarities between the mass adoption of email for business in the 90s and what we are starting to see now with businesses and SMS messages.
Both technologies have been adopted by businesses to share their message to large audiences more quickly. Like email, direct mail, and other traditional media channels adopted by businesses in the past, text messaging offers a way to connect with customers on their terms.
Businesses must adapt to consumers and not the other way around.
The benefits of SMS / text messages are apparent, but the consequences of overuse can be drastic.
Over the past 30 years, we’ve seen the evolution of email as businesses and consumers fight to maintain a clean inbox free of spam. In order for you to get the most out of text messaging as a channel, here are some best practices for SMS messaging you can use to make sure your message is beneficial and less invasive than alternatives.
- Use short and succinct messages.
- Comply with carrier and government guidelines
- Use clear calls to action
Text messages are more versatile
When text message was initially adopted by the business community it was primarily used in the form of text message marketing software. However, since then we have seen the versatility of text message as companies have used it across hundreds of verticals and across a wide range of teams.
If quick, real-time communication with high engagement is critical for your business then you should definitely consider business text messaging.
If you’re looking for a cost-effective way to communicate with your customer base then you should seriously consider adding text messages to your communications strategy. Whether you are a mobile marketer, a customer support specialist, or a sales professional, adding text messages as a communication channel is going to improve your efficiency.
If you’d like to learn more about Avochato’s text message platform you can sign up for a free trial here.
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