MMS and SMS (visual and text direct messaging) have greater reach than any other communication channel. Direct to text inbox messaging is native smartphone feature, (no APP download required) it enables a point to point delivery service managed by the telecommunications carriage networks, using telephone numbers as the delivery address. ALl other services rely on your email or IP adddress. This means that an SMS message can be directed to any mobile phone number in the world, and an MMS message to any smartphone. There is no other channel in the world that comes close to this delivery capability or open rates.
If your home is at risk from fire, flood or storm, the authorities text message you, they don’t email you. Guaranteed and instant delivery is the absolute power of text messaging.
As more people purchase smart phones, text messagings capability as a marketing tool has been extended to guarantee to deliver <300kb visual or MMS messages as well as 160 character SMS messages to all smartphones. Some some brands are now using double SMS’s as well, as a 306 character SMS can do a lot more than a 160 character SMS.
Messaging’s marketing power is the engagement it generates. While email has a 10% to 20% open rate, direct messaging has a 98 percent open-rate, with between 90% & 95% of recipients reading their text messages within thirty seconds of receiving them. SMS and MMS messages can contain text, video, pictures, .gifs. Messaging can be fully 2way, responses can be automated, opt in messages can be generated using QR codes, or text reply – the opportunities for superior client engagement through messaging are limitless.
Add to this, we hold onto our mobile numbers. We are very reluctant to change them, and on average we keep our mobile number 4-5 times longer than our email addresses. So put simply:
SMS and MMS messages (if you have a dedicated send and receive number) has a reply rate as high as 45 percent, and an average person responds to an SMS/MMS within 90 seconds if prompted.
Note a new phenomena: we have seen text replies as high as 15% from clients seeking to order using text reply if the offer was powerful, even though the seller had not asked for a text reply.
As the physical distance between customer and brands is extended by the impacts of Covid19, we recommend marketers should not ignore the benefits of the SMS and MMS channel. The messaging channel can be used as platform for reasserting brand and product messaging, delivering loyalty, and delivering calls to action, geo location based push, 2way chat engagement or rapid convenient check-out.
Here are 10 use cases to build Trust, Revenues, Loyalty and Referrals
Build a Loyalty Program by Leveraging SMS
Build Referrals from Loyal Buyers
Boost Your Subscriber Base by Targeting In-Store Shoppers
Use SMS for Call to Action
Use SMS to Boost Your Email Open-Rate
Offer Discounts and Build Top-of-the-Mind Awareness
Boost Your Revenues By Getting Instant Buyer-Feedback
Abandoned Cart Notifications
Product Launch, New Stock, and Product Updates
Distribute Your Coupon to More People
1. Build a Loyalty program
One study showed that 82 percent of shoppers choose businesses that have loyalty programs over others. And loyalty programs guarantee customer retention. Raising your customer retention rate by five percent is a big deal. It could earn your business up to 125 percent more profit.
So it only makes sense for businesses to gravitate towards customer loyalty strategies. But some businesses are better at using potent tactics than others. Savvy brands understand the power of MMS & SMS, and they’re using it to drive their customer loyalty growth at the speed of thought.
When shoppers buy from them, they seize that moment. These brands would send buyers an SMS invite to join their loyalty programs in exchange for intelligently structured benefits.
2. Build Referrals from Loyal Buyers
Loyal customers are happy to introduce you to new customers, or they’re willing to introduce new people to your business. Referrals are key to your business growth.
On a scale of one to ten:
- 9 – 10 are loyal, would recommend you to others, and would keep buying
- 7 – 8 are indifferent and can move to other brands if they want
- 0 – 6 are unhappy and can soil your reputation with negative comments
In a Bain and Company study, shoppers who’ve bought ten or more times from you refer 50 percent more buyers than one-time shoppers.
So the best audience to target for your referral programs is frequent buyers.
Regular shoppers are more likely to refer people to your business. And they send significantly more leads your way than anyone else.
Using SMS, which almost guarantees high open rates, ask your loyal buyers to refer people to your business. You may decide to incentivize this request for referrals too.
The challenge with referrals is to put a process in place that makes it easy for your clients to refer, that way the 83% of your clients that want to refer will, not only 29%.
3.Boost Your Subscriber Base by Targeting In-Store Shoppers
The line separating the online and offline world is quickly blurring out. And this isn’t only about virtual or augmented reality. Even the simple mobile phone has become instrumental in bringing your local store online.
Use attractive offers in your retail shops to ask your in-store shoppers to subscribe to mobile engagement via QR Code or text in keywords via SMS in exchange for incentives. You can offer different discount types, depending on your strategy. For instance, asking your customers to subscribe using a short code by SMS for a credit card. With and SMS and MMS combination you can deliver a reward digitally as a visual coupon direct to the consumer at time of sign-up.
4.Use SMS and MMS for Calls to Action
Since the click-through rate (CTR) is high with MMS and SMS, leverage it to deliver timely messages to your audience. The issue with mobile is to do everything you can
Instant /Flexibility, Flash sales. However, not all Call to Action (CTA) is appropriate for SMS. With a maximum of 160 characters, your SMS can’t have lengthy texts that end with “Read More,” or pitches that end with “Buy Now” or “Sign Up.”
However, your timely messages can use:
- Click the link
- Call us
- Text back
- Visit us
5. Use SMS to Boost Your Email Open-Rate
Some businesses either use Email or SMS in their marketing campaign, but savvy ones use both channels strategically.
Since emails convey detailed messages well, you can use it for lengthy conversations that require explanations. Furthermore, an email allows attachments like brochures and downloadable documents. But the chances are that most of your customers won’t see the email.
Hence, you want to leverage the higher open rate of text messaging to boost your email open-rate.
In one Smart Insights report, SMS helped businesses experience a 20 to 30 percent boost in their email open. A simple message that asked eads, “have you read our email?” did the magic.
6. Offer Discounts and Build Top-of-the-Mind Awareness
Building your brand takes more than having a catchphrase, brilliant logo designs, and brand colors. You want your customers to remember you.
To stay top-of-the-mind, you can use SMS strategies like
- Keeping track of and sending anniversary messages to your customers
- Sending them tips and helpful information on using your product or service
- Offering discounts and promotions
- Giving them party invites
- Sharing news headlines if appropriate
And more. Here are some examples.
A local Domino’s Pizza stays top-of-the-mind by offering discounts via text messages.
Another brand, ARM, also uses discounts sent via SMS to invite their leads to sign up for their program.
You may also use trackable URLs in your SMS to uncover the best send times for your messages. And then take advantage of the timing when running your campaign.
Up to 90 percent of your customers would read your message. So if you’re offering discounts, you want to be ready for the rush. For example, make sure your staff can fulfill your offers on time.
7. Boost Your Revenues By Getting Instant Buyer-Feedback
Sending your buyers a survey immediately they leave your store can help you get a sense of how satisfied they feel about your food or their shopping experience at your place.
This point can also be helpful for an event if you host online or offline events. When a session ends, get a quick sense of what your attendees enjoyed and what they didn’t like. And then, use that feedback to improve on your coming event sessions.
You can send your leads to a page on your website or app to leave a short survey like the one below.
Surveys and feedback can help you discover profitable patterns you can leverage to boost your revenue and customer satisfaction.
8. Abandoned Cart Notification
Trying to recover all abandoned carts is a waste of time because, on average, approximately 70 percent of shopping carts are abandoned. As high as 92 percent of the visitors to a retail website have no intention to buy.
You can automate your SMS and MMS messaging such that when a customer adds products to their cart without checking out, they receive notification automatically. But you must have collected their phone numbers to make this possible. You must send the abandoned cart SMS fast and create an easy link for them to get back to the cart.
You can increase your success rate by offering incentives, such as discounts and free deliveries
9. Product Launch, New Stock, and Product Updates
Most businesses have come to rely on email for their product launch and for keeping their customers updated about new stocks or improvements. But SMS can offer exciting opportunities too.
You can inform your target audience about new products, discounts, services, and events via text messages. Studies have shown that SMS might even be more potent than email.
SMS and MMS messages have a 209 percent higher response rate than messages on apps, email, or Facebook. In one study, sales leads who got a text message during a product launch converted 40 percent higher than those who didn’t get a text message.
Salesforce says that 89 percent of marketers report that SMS marketing commands more results than business websites and display ads. More so, 82 percent of marketers either maintained or increased their investment in SMS marketing.
In short, using SMS to launch your product gets you the types of results you love.
10. Distribute Your Coupon to More People
So you can compile the phone numbers of leads who respond and target them in future campaigns.
Mobile coupons allow you to send your brand codes to customers quickly. You can send them as coupon codes via SMS and visual coupons to create greater impact.