Business texting has emerged as one of the most powerful tools for companies eager to drive aggressive and effective marketing campaigns.
Sending a text message directly to the smartphones of a customer has proven to be a sensational way to build relationships with large consumer bases –- and do other things, such as bolster brand loyalty, burnish brand image/identity and just flat-out increase sales & profits.
The Numbers Don’t Lie
Numerous studies show that the recipient opens almost 100% (98%). The follow-through is a robust 45% of recipients responding. And get this: The average text is answered within 90 seconds!
It's just the beginning of the many advantages texting online delivers to business operators.
However, it’s worth noting there are some drawbacks to business texting as well. First, it only makes sense to be aware of the pitfalls of texting while also deploying this powerful tool to move a business strategy forward.
First the pros:
- In addition to the already mentioned high degree of receptivity and interaction customers display toward texts, they also clearly prefer texting over email marketing. For example, one study shows a slight majority (52%) of customers expressing a preference for texting over email.
- Customers show a statistically significant preference for texting (over email) to receive appointment reminders, such as prescription refills, service outage warnings and heads-up notices of online scams or fraud attacks.
- They “pre-agree” to receive text messages instead of unwanted email “spam.” That’s because federal regulations require consumers to permit to receive text messages. Thus, text recipients are “primed” to get and interact with text messages.
- It’s affordable. Texting is cheaper than buying full-blown ads that can be placed in front of a viewer in whatever medium. The bottom line is that texting is among today's most affordable forms of advertising/promoting.
- Text messages from businesses selling or promoting something must be extremely brief – almost painfully so. According to Granicus, the average attention span for reading a text message is 7 to 8 seconds! Yes, that means your text has less than 10 seconds to grab attention, communicate some message and achieve an actionable outcome!
- Sending too many texts quickly starts to feel intrusive among receivers. They must agree to get text messages -– so they can also easily take action to quit. Thus, the text marketer must be careful not to "go to the texting well" too often.
The latter point means that the successful use of text messaging will focus on providing true value to the recipient and doing so in a way that makes them “feel” they are getting a benefit.
Part of an Overall Strategy
It’s clear that texting is a powerful marketing tool, but it is critically important to understand that it's not the only implementation in the marketing toolbox.
For texting to achieve its full potential, for example, it should be carefully balanced or coordinated with its older cousin, e-mail marketing.
Most companies today choose to deploy hybrid text messaging and e-mail strategies. When done right, these two digital communication tools can bolster an overall marketing strategy that entails other aspects, such as social media marketing, affiliate and influencer marketing, SEO/pay-per-click and more.
The Future of Text Marketing
Texting will likely remain effective in the coming years because it is already evolving. For example, texting is being improved by adding messaging apps incorporating features like video, live notifications, images, GIFs, read receipts and more.
In short, texting online is about a lot more than just texting.
Another exciting development is omnichannel adoption. This helps companies use texting to connect with numerous channels and digital touchpoints. Some examples of the latter are WhatsApp, Fb, MMS and more. More nodes of communication translate to more sales and profits.
Of course, one can’t forget the tremendous influence that AI will have in both writing the texts themselves, but also providing data insights and targeting approaches.
Text Marketing … It’s All Good
Yes, there are some “cons” and precautions to consider when considering text marketing as part of a company’s overall marketing strategy. But the “pros” easily outweigh the drawbacks. Furthermore, exciting innovations on the horizon mean texting online will remain a superior option for years to come.
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