Text messaging is an opportunity to get a message delivered right to the palm of your buyer's hand.
Do you include SMS campaigns in your marketing strategy? Properly executed SMS marketing campaigns can be highly effective. With open rates over 90%, text messages are a fast and direct way to reach customers.
SMS messaging is one of the most effective communication tools to reach sales prospects. Texting is a low-pressure way to communicate between sender and receiver. This makes it easier for prospects to ask questions without the pressure of a sales call.
Contact rates improve, and sales cycles are shorter with text engagement. SMS marketing software can also include links in messages to sales offers and marketing pages, allowing for immediate conversion opportunities.
SMS or text marketing campaigns frequently achieve 70% better open rates than emails. You are probably losing sales if you aren't using text campaigns in your lead management process.
Fundamentals of SMS Marketing
Successful text message campaigns require a robust sales process. The same principles that apply to effective email and calling campaigns apply to texting.
Target audience, message relevance, and opt-in are as important to SMS campaigns as they are to email and call campaigns. When done right, text message marketing will drive engagement, increase sales, and improve customer relationships. However, it is important to follow industry regulations and best practices. Avoid spamming or annoying customers with irrelevant or excessive messages.
One should be aware of laws and regulations governing SMS marketing, including:
- The US Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) restricts automated calls and texts to consumers without prior written consent.
- The Canadian Anti-Spam Law (CASL) requires businesses to obtain explicit consent before sending commercial electronic messages.
- The EU's General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) requires businesses to obtain explicit consent before using individuals' personal data.
It is essential for businesses to comply with these laws and regulations to avoid penalties and legal repercussions.
Your sales team probably already understands these regulations if you use email and outbound calling campaigns.
SMS Marketing Software
There are many benefits to using SMS marketing automation. SMS marketing software usually exists within a sales engagement or lead management software. Bulk SMS marketing to large contact lists isn't feasible by manual entry into a messaging app. When you automate outreach to potential customers, you improve sales efficiency dramatically.
With automated SMS marketing and scheduled messages, salespeople don't have to think about who to text and when. The software identifies which stage of the customer journey a prospect is in, greatly simplifying the lead nurturing process.
This automation transforms the SMS marketing process from an outbound task to an inbound opportunity.
Salespeople respond to inbound texts as prospects reply. Inbound texts from prospects act as a qualifying stage, showing interest. They also prevent sales agents from spending time on leads that are not already engaged.
Including texting as part of your omnichannel communication process ensures that you get maximum ROI from your leads.
Getting the Most from SMS Marketing Software
SMS marketing, email marketing, and a power dialer will improve your overall open rate. Improving your open rate improves your contact rate, win rate, and ROI from your lead generation and sales efforts.
Lead management software helps your sales team to integrate SMS marketing with multiple touchpoints into your marketing strategy. Using these touchpoints together, your sales agents maximize contact; automation allows them to do this more efficiently than ever before.
SMS marketing software consists of four essential components.
Templates - Templates are used to provide the body of the message. This allows for standardized messages across your sales team and saves time by pre-filling the bulk of the message copy. These templates are then customized and personalized for each prospect, individually or through automation.
Templates should feel natural and be as personal as possible to speak directly to the prospect and their needs.
With ClickPoint's automated texting, you can track the effectiveness of each template as soon as your sales team starts texting.
Nurture Sequences - Once you've created text templates, you can create text nurture campaigns. Nurture sequences can have triggers like; time of day, the time between texts, status changes, or actions that a lead takes.
These variables help determine the ideal message for your lead at their stage in the sales process. When you schedule text messages and have a targeted message, you ensure the right message at the right time.
This improves the likelihood of a successful reply. Set these parameters based on best practices for converting your ideal customer.
Reply Notifications - When prospects read or reply to texts, notifications are delivered to salespeople in real time. Sales agents can quickly engage using a library of templates to rapidly send appropriate responses.
Lead management software allows you to text any lead or prospect, then call or send an email follow-up. This makes SMS marketing part of a broader sales and marketing ecosystem, improving your sales process and customer experience.
Conversations - Automations are a great way to initiate contact and provide a qualifying filter. However, the real power of SMS marketing is the ability to have real-time conversations with prospects.
Ready-made templates help to speed up response times for sales agents. The process is standardized and simplified by creating response templates that answer the most common questions.
Response time is the foundation of effective sale engagement. When prospective customers text, sales agents must respond immediately. Integrated with lead management software with two-way texting, and real-time notifications, your sales team can respond instantly to leads' replies.
Improving Contact Rates
There are several ways to improve contact rates in text message marketing campaigns:
- Personalization: Personalizing text messages with the recipient's and other relevant information can increase engagement and the likelihood of a response.
- Timing: Sending text messages at the right time, such as during or after business hours, will improve contact rates.
- Relevance: Ensure the message is relevant and valuable to the recipient so they are more likely to respond.
- Call to Action: Including clear calls to action, such as "Reply YES to opt-in," encourages recipients to take action.
- Limited Time Offers: Creating a sense of urgency by offering promotions or deals can increase the likelihood of a response.
- A/B testing: Testing variations in wording or calls-to-action helps to determine what improves contact rates best.
- Opt-in only: Campaigns should be opt-in only. Recipients are more likely to respond to messages they have explicitly agreed to receive.
Using lead management software such as LeadManager gives you control of your SMS marketing. It doesn't require manual sales intervention and becomes a seamless part of your sales cadence. As a complete sales engagement solution, LeadManager gives sales reps a full suite of outreach and lead nurture tools with calling, email, and SMS.
SMS marketing is an effective way to reach potential customers quickly and directly. Most people have mobile phones, and text messages have a high open rate. However, it is important to consider local regulations and laws regarding opt-in and obtain explicit consent before sending SMS messages.
Additionally, it's crucial to understand your target audience and whether they would prefer to be contacted through SMS. Most prospects find SMS marketing a convenient and direct way to receive sales and marketing messages. Generally, it's a good idea to research your target audience and understand their preferred communication methods before adding them to your SMS outbound sales program.