Many small to mid-sized businesses we talk to are amazed to hear how many large, well-known brands are using SMS marketing today. They’re also amazed when they realize not many, if any, of their competitors are using it. Quickly, the conversation turns to “why haven’t we considered this sooner” and “when can we start?” As with any form of marketing, whenever you can reach the audience where your competition isn’t, the more effective it can be
"Your audience wants to receive text messages from you, if they’re valuable."
Because at this point almost everyone has received at least one of those spam “you’ve won this gift card” messages, organizations assume their messages will be received the same way. This just isn’t true and they’re always surprised after their first outgoing campaign how well the messages are received by their audience and how few people opt-out.
This may change in the next 5-10 years, but for now text messaging is a personal and intimate form of communication because we are only used to sharing our mobile phone number with friends and family. Customers welcome businesses into this area of their lives due to the special nature of the relationship that they have with “my salon” or “my spa”
If you operate or sell at multiple services, you must have different text message lists for each service so you can be confident in your timing and that you are providing relevant information for each customer. If a customer starts getting messages about services they do not want, they will quickly unsubscribe.
Schedule texts advantageously
Text messages are read very quickly after delivery, usually within 3 minutes, so send your text message at the exact moment when a customer is deciding to come to the business or not. Recommended after 10 am to and no later than 6:30 pm.
For Saturday, you may need to be more careful because of tip #1. You should choose between sending the message at 8am (no earlier!) or the night before — ask your customers or test it both ways and see what works better.
Offer a special deal
If it makes sense, consider offering a special deal within your text message. For example, “Hi from Cuties Salon! Mention you are a Cutie and get $15 off treatment!” This moves product and also gives customers another added benefit to join your text message list.
Include a photo
Photos immediately connect customers to what is going on at the business, so don’t miss the chance to attach a photo with your text message.
Don’t send too often
With the great power of text message marketing, comes great responsibility. Text messages interrupt your customer
which is great for getting them to come to your business, but if you send messages too often, customers will get annoyed and unsubscribe.
You don’t need to get your own shortcode.
One of the first questions we get from newcomers to SMS marketing is, “How do I get my own shortcode?” While some large brands may find value in getting their own shortcode, most businesses and non-profits can save the expense and hassle. Like many SMS marketing providers, we provide our shared shortcodes to clients. This saves them money and allows them to get up and running quickly.