6 Tips to best practice SMS marketing

Australia has more mobile phones than people. It’s not news to us that smartphone and tablet use has skyrocketed in the last decade, giving rise to new, improved and point-in-time communications between consumers. Statistics still show that consumption and usage of mobile devices continue to rapidly increase, and for millennials especially, mobile is a necessity in everyday life.

This year the SMS (or text message) turned 25. The first-ever text message said simply “Merry Christmas” and was sent by a software engineer to the then Director of Vodafone, Richard Jarvis. Fast forward 25 years and texting is still popular, across age groups, cultures around the world because of its concise and simple nature, as well as its compatibility across devices.

Using SMS can be multi-purpose. Agencies are using SMS for both informative messages such as technical updates, outages, or reminders to tenants to pay their rent, as well as marketing messages such as live inspection alerts for sales persons. It’s important for agencies to differentiate these types of messages as they do encounter differing consent rules.

SMS MARKETING

As a busy real estate business, reaching your prospects, clients, tenants or landlords effectively is critical to your business success. The people who you are looking to communicate with are busy too!

Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp alone process 60 billion messages a day – that’s not including actual SMS messages between carriers, so with such a steady incline of mobile use, and the opportunity to market to customers through mobile devices being higher than ever before, how can you cut through the noise and ensure your messages are read?

Here’s 6 tips to kick off your SMS marketing campaign:

1. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE CONSENT

Just like gathering content to email marketing messages to your customers, you must also gain their consent when you intend on using SMS as a marketing channel. Without consent, you and your business run the risk facing fines, which could damage the brand or reputation.

2. HAVE A PURPOSE

Don’t send them, just because you can. Your messages need to be worthwhile and valuable. Important alerts, useful information, exclusive event details or general information that keeps yours customer’s wants and needs at heart is the best way to get through to them.

3. PERSONALISE THE MESSAGE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE

By making your customers feel like they’re part of an exclusive club, they’re more likely to open and appreciate the message you have to say. This can be used as an incentive for your customers to opt-in too – after all, if they don’t opt in, they’re missing out!

4. COMMUNICATE CLEARLY

Text messages have a limit of 160 characters. This ensures messages are kept short and succinct, just the way your customers want them! Avoid using shorthand, such as using ‘2’ for ‘to’ or ‘U’ for ‘You’ – it looks unprofessional. To read more about effective communication, read our blog about it.

5. LIMIT HOW OFTEN YOU SEND

Don’t be a spammer, people will opt out if you become annoying. Pay attention to your frequency, and keep an eye on your opt-out rates – if they start to rise, that probably means you either need to look at the message and value therein, or the frequency of your communications.

6. OPT-OUT OPTION

Just like the option to ‘unsubscribe’ on marketing emails, you must give customers an option to ‘opt out’ of your marketing SMS too. A simple way to do this is to simply state “To opt-out, reply STOP” at the end of your messages, and ensure your database is kept up to date!

With digital media time spent on mobile now 68% compared to just 32% on desktop, there’s no denying that using mobile for marketing can be truly valuable to your business. The rising dependency of SMS to deliver market messages to consumers is increasing the competition in any industry, so make sure you’re keeping up.

Check out how Console can help implement SMS into Console Gateway or ClientManager so you can start connecting with your customers on a new level.