Text messaging might have been around for a long time, but it still has a lot to offer — particularly when you have something important to say and you need to be sure it gets there quickly and convincingly. And in almost any industry you can name, rapid-fire communication is an essential ingredient. Marketing is no exception.
So, if your business would benefit from being able to reach people in a more compelling and reliable fashion, you should put your money into text messaging. Why?
Here are 5 big reasons:
You can reach people at any time
These days, we all carry our smartphones everywhere we go. Meetings, social gatherings, jogs… we even leave them lurking nearby when we sleep to accommodate our early-morning eagerness to check the news and perhaps play a game or two. And while not everyone uses the phone part of their smartphone very often, it’s always there, running in the background.
People talk about social media platforms and messenger applications having remarkable accessibility, and it’s true, they do — even spanning across devices. But for anyone who keeps their phone with them at all times (so almost everyone), text messaging is even better, because it will carry across just fine in areas of low signal, or when someone has run out of mobile data.
Got a limited-time deal you want to promote as powerfully as possible? Why pass up sending a text when you know it will reach its destination?
It feels comparatively urgent
Our phones are hooked into so many content streams that we can become inured to the influx of alerts and notifications. Most things sit comfortably near the back of the priority list: a new YouTube video upload, an app update, a new message on Facebook. We fill up our social media profiles with so many contacts and interests that nothing feels special.
Text messaging retains a lot of its urgency, though, because it’s not nearly as saturated. It tends to be the case that fewer people know your phone number than know your email address or have you as a social media contact, so text messages don’t face the same level of competition.
They also feel more urgent because they’re more direct than other message types. If you couldn’t locate someone important to you, would you send a Facebook message, or would you text them? The latter is much more likely. So, if you want people to pay quick attention to your promotions, text messages will prove the most impactful.
Spam filters aren’t a big problem
Email is extremely useful and very convenient for handling countless things. It’s free to send, email addresses are easy to find, and it’s ripe for creative customization. But there are some big problems. Firstly, the average internet user receives so many emails each day (many all but useless to them) that you can’t expect them to pay too much attention to yours. And secondly, spam filters — largely necessary to avoid inboxes filling up with garbage — can be somewhat overzealous and filter important service emails.
And while text messages can be filtered to some extent, with particular numbers blocked, it isn’t anywhere near as tricky to get a text message seen as it is to get an email seen. What happens if you send a first-come-first-served offer and it gets filtered? If affected customers find out, they’ll end up blaming you. When your marketing message absolutely must get seen in a timely fashion, go with text messaging.
It integrates smoothly with modern systems
Because text message is a relatively old technology, you could forgive people for assuming that it isn’t the best choice for use with advanced systems. In actuality, text messaging works perfectly with modern systems through bulk SMS systems, supporting all the integrations you need to hook your operations into text messaging procedures.
In fact, for various reasons, text messaging is the perfect accompaniment for a hands-off ecommerce side venture. Entrepreneurs already take advantage of so many convenient online services (trigger-led email automation suites, web hosts with rich customization options and easy-access mobile dashboards, convenient cloud-based accountancy tools, analytics-driven store marketplaces for flipping sites, remote assistance companies with scalable support structures, etc.), and SMS tech fits in seamlessly as an additional way to reach customers in a pinch — especially since it’s a very robust technology.
For instance, let’s say that some email services grind to a halt and your marketing suite loses its ability to send out your new batch of offers. What happens then? Well, since it’s fairly unlikely that phone lines will be down too, you can send it out via text. This is also a great option considering that notification via SMS is already a standard part of the ecommerce toolkit.
Response rates are excellent
There’s often a lengthy back-and-forth to the sales process. You inform someone of available products, they ask about something, you provide additional details, they have more questions for you, etc. And because text messaging has a higher response rate than any other kind of promotional mobile communication, it’s the best choice for building that kind of rapport (it’s also perfectly compatible with modern personalization systems).
This is particularly notable given how unwieldy email reply chains can become. While email replying defaults can be useful, the tendency for subject lines to gather strings of “Re:” and each reply to contain the full thread so far can make things incredibly confusing. Text messaging is clear, straightforward, and extremely easy to follow.
Overall, text messaging is still incredibly useful for businesses owing to its speed, urgency, reliability, and compatibility with modern software. Should it be the only communication method you use? No, of course not. Emails and calls warrant the most focus. But when your message absolutely must get through, text is the way to go.