What are the Benefits of Text (also called SMS – or short message service) Marketing?
As a business owner, why should you consider implementing this form of marketing into your current advertising mix?
That’s a good question, so let’s outline the benefits – just click the heading to reveal the accompanying information. Or, if you’d prefer, click here to watch the video!
In North America, cell phone saturation exceeds 95%, which means the majority of your customers have cell phones, and are able to receive a text message. This includes those who have phones considered to be obsolete and those who do not have data plans; “texting” is a very rudimentary technology and is supported by almost all phone platforms.
It’s a common misconception, but it’s not true; it’s not just teenagers and college students who are avid “texters.” If the bulk of your customers are in the 13-60 year old age range, they will respond very positively to this marketing medium. Contrary to what you may have been led to believe, this is a technology that has been embraced equally across almost all age groups (octogenarians are the only demographic not equally represented).
Place a single, one time run of a banner across the top of or bottom of your local newspaper, and you’re looking at anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars of out of pocket cost, depending on the publication’s distribution numbers. A radio ad? Several thousand dollars for 2-week run… minimum. With consumer confidence is the doldrums and spending down accordingly, many business owners can no longer afford to gamble away their dwindling cash reserves.
Text marketing, on the other hand is not only cost effective (a “Business” level subscription to Local Text Marketers will set you back $34.99/month) but it is extremely efficient, since you only ever spend your money delivering your advertising message to people who have requested to receive it. There is no waste, no fat.
For example, text marketing allows you to boost the success of your traditional print, radio, and television ads. You can be done very simply, by implementing a call to action into them. If you run a regular newspaper ad, you could insert a message like this into your ad…
To get 50% off your first order of 1 dozen muffins at Mary’s Bakery, (and to receive subsequent discounts direct to your cell phone) text MUFFINS to 41932.
Because people are rarely separated from their cell phones, this combination of an incentive based call to action and the customer’s ability to act on the offer NOW, means your ROI (return on investment) is dramatically increased from such campaigns. Normally, you’d have to hope that the offer was compelling enough that the customer would show up in your place of business before it faded from her memory. Now, it doesn’t matter because you have just gained the ability to market to her directly.
In addition, when inserted into your traditional advertising, text marketing allows you an additional metric with which to measure performance – something which is generally very difficult to do. A poor response may mean that your ad is…
- Not being seen.
- Not resonating with your potential customers.
- Is not reaching an audience for whom your products have appeal.
Either way, this helps you allocate your budget for traditional advertising into the mediums that perform the best, saving you money.
It’s likely your customer is exposed to hundreds of advertising messages daily. But text messaging completely bypasses traditional advertising and delivers your message DIRECTLY to your customer, who reads almost every single text he or she receives within 4 minutes.
This represents an incredible opportunity for merchants. No other marketing medium on the planet can make this claim!
Many business owners are so focused on obtaining new customers, that they forget about the revenue opportunities that lie with existing customer base. Ever hear the saying “80% of my business comes from 20% of my customers?”
Text marketing is a great way to capitalize on your existing relationships. Your current customers, after all, already know the quality of your product and/or service(s). They will therefore be the easiest to market to, and most receptive to your offers.
Marketing to your existing clientele with text is the quickest and most cost effective way to boost your bottom line.
With text / SMS marketing, you never spend your money delivering your message to an audience who may or may not be interested in your offers. Since your prospects are qualified as being interested in your offers (they had to opt in to receive them after all), your campaigns are extremely efficient. No more paying for advertising that your prospective customers may never see.
Remember that old saying…
“I know half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, I just don’t know which half?”
That does not apply to text marketing.
Send out a text message with a coupon or a compelling offer and very often, you’ll have people redeeming it within hours, if not minutes. Can you think of any other way to accomplish that?
When you see an advertisement in your local newspaper, do you feel like the advertiser is speaking directly to you? Do you feel a bond with the advertiser?
Most likely not.
But to your customers and prospects, text messages “feel” like “one to one” communications. This establishes a relationship and strengthens brand loyalty.
When you can efficiently target only the people interested in your offers – like text marketing allows – it enables you to reduce the amount of spending allocated to other advertising mediums. This saves you money, and reduces the amount of money it costs you to acquire a new customer.
Typical advertising works like this…
You buy access to a certain number of eyeballs (print and T.V. ads) or ears (radio). What you pay will be based upon how many people you access.
Then you “blast” your message out to all these people (that’s the “spray” part) and then you pray that enough of the people who are exposed to your message will become customers and cover the cost of the advertising expenditure.
The problem is that there’s never a guarantee of performance. It’s a gamble. And you are not the only person trying to get your message “out there.”
Your prospective customer, on the other hand, is bombarded with advertising messages from the moment she gets up to the moment she goes to bed. How do you “cut through the clutter” and get your message to resonate with her?
That’s the million dollar question, isn’t it?
Spray and pray advertising is an exercise in branding, which is really only something large companies can afford to do. Small to medium sized business simply cannot, in today’s environment, allocate cash resources to marketing mediums that “may or may not” deliver an acceptable ROI (Return on Investment).
Luckily, as your text marketing efforts increase, and as you build your list of current customers and prospects, you’ll be able to phase out “spray and pray” advertising, dramatically reducing your overall advertising costs.
Business owners who adopt a text marketing solution now will gain a huge advantage over their competitors, especially as text marketing becomes more and more mainstream.
Right now, this medium is relatively uncluttered, and for the most part, only being used by large companies. Right now text marketing has, I guess you could say, a certain novelty to it. Almost like when you first started getting emails.
Remember when it was exciting to get an email?
Now that was a long time ago…But in time, it will become more and more mainstream, and business owners will need to work a LOT harder, and offer more attractive incentives, to get new prospects to sign up to receive text marketing messages from them.To get the jump on your competitors, you need to act now!
Today, people read almost every single text message they receive, and usually within 4 minutes. That’s a pretty impressive response rate. But how does text marketing measure up against other technology based marketing mediums, like email newsletters and social media?Let’s talk about email newsletters first…Today, email newsletter “open rates” (i.e., the number of people who actually open an email and view its contents) vary greatly depending on the industry, but the average is between 27-34%, with a 4-5% click through rate.That means if you send out an email to 1,000 people, between 270 and 340 of them will actually open it, and only 11-18 (4-5%) will actually click on any of the offers in it.A little discouraging, no?
And what about Facebook?
When someone “likes” your business on FaceBook, your updates appear in their daily feed. But Facebook is on record as admitting that only 16% of a page’s followers ever see their posts in the news feed. And of those 16%, we have no idea how many actually act on your updates or offers.
While both social media and email newsletters are low cost ventures and certainly worth pursuing, neither one can hold a candle to the power of text message marketing.
Does your business regularly send out notifications of appointments? It could be a reminder for a pet’s immunization shots, a regular furnace cleaning, a dental cleaning, or the availability of the influenza vaccine for the year… if you are sending these out, moving to text messaging could save you a bundle. Imagine… for each appointment, you have to purchase a postcard and postage. Then you have to pay someone to fill in the pertinent details and mail them. Or maybe you are paying a staff member to call customers directly?
Either way, imagine how much easier and cheaper it would be to login to your Local Text Marketers account, and to send an immediate text message to all these people, with a single click?
There’s really no end of the ways text/sms can help your business, no matter what your business happens to be – click here to read more about industry specific solutions!
Or, why waste time? Get the jump on your competitors and start taking advantage of the power of text marketing today – secure your subscription now!