SMS is a channel unlike any other in the world of marketing. Yet too many marketers and business owners are using it just as they would any other digital marketing channels. Mobile marketing isn’t digital marketing for smaller screens because consumers use mobile devices like smartphones and tablets in very different ways than they use a television or computer. The most effective SMS marketing take advantage of the unique qualities of mobile devices including user engagement.

Mobile, and by extension, SMS should be encouraging interaction between brands and customers, but so many are just using it to push for sales by offering deals, coupons, and promotional messages. Here are some different ways to use SMS marketing that will lead to more user engagement.

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Most people know that SMS boasts a much higher open rate (98%) compared to email (about 20%). But many forget that SMS also has a much better click-through rate, about 36% compared to email’s 3%. For whatever reason, consumers are 12 times more likely to click on a link when it’s included in a text as opposed to an email. Including a link to a mobile-friendly website or a social media page in a text message is an invitation to customers to engage with the brand on another level. It will lead to “likes” and better social media presence as well as increased web traffic and sales.

Two-factor authentication

Another level of security beyond just having to enter a password greatly increases the security of credit card information and any other sensitive information on a private account. Your customers will appreciate a two-factor authentication where a text message comes through on their phone that includes a four- or five-digit number that they have to enter on their computer to complete the login process. It’s a small thing but it’s just one more way that customers are asked to complete an action in response to a text.

Customer-satisfaction surveys

Short surveys where respondents can give their answers by simply typing in a number between one to ten are a convenient way for customers to offer feedback. Not only do you get valuable information about your customer base and how you can better meet their needs, you also are getting them to interact with your brand as opposed to just being a passive recipient of promotional material.


Contests are another great way to get your customers to text you rather than the other way around. Rules for entry might include sending a photo via text or perhaps a one or two sentence explanation as to why they love a certain product or service. Winning photographs or statements can then be used as testimonials for your brand.