Marketing through SMS messaging can be a challenge. When you think about general marketing, you might think of billboards, television commercials, newspaper and magazine ads, and anything else. Smart and strategic marketing can be powerful because the format is so versatile. You can grab people with stunning images and comedic or thought-provoking text or dialogue. General marketing might employ a team of top-notch designers, or photographers and videographers, or writers. And marketing projects grab the attention of audiences. With so much versatility and potential for creative marketing mediums, it might appear to be a challenge to market to audiences through SMS messaging, or sending a simple text to someone’s phone.
Limitations of SMS Messaging
Text messages are 160 characters in length, which means your marketing messaging has to be 160 characters or less. That’s not 160 words, that’s 160 characters. SMS messages leave little to no space for images, videos, audio clips, or wordy prose to capture the attention of your audience and convert them into a customer.
While it may seem to be a challenge, the benefits of SMS marketing outweigh the struggles and costs. People are constantly on their phones, and text messages go straight through. SMS messages generally pop up over internet browsers, over streaming videos, and even through phone calls. That means that an SMS marketing can cut straight through everything else and reach the receiver. With a magazine, they might not even glance at the printed ad. But everyone checks their text messages.
Messages Should Provide Value to your Audience
With text messages being short and concise, it is important to make your messages short and concise while providing immediate value to the receiver. If you are promoting a sale or product, encourage your audience to act now to receive the sale or promotion or special product. Text messages are effective at reaching your audience, but if you do not offer anything for your audience to act on when they receive the message, then they can easily discard the message and do nothing.
Entrepreneur contributor Susan Gunelius notes the importance of offering something of value. “No one wants to receive texts from a company unless the messages offer something of immediate value. Because text messaging is an instantaneous medium, you should include real-time offers.” Your message should create a sense of urgency for the audience. You want them to think that if they act now, they will receive an exclusive and incredible offer just for them.
Power in the Brevity of an SMS Message
Despite the fact that SMS messages are short, they have the advantage of being efficient and powerful. Concise messages that offer a unique value to your audience will encourage them to act quickly. Avoid thinking that SMS messages are limiting, but embrace the fact that SMS messages are impactful, as long as they are appropriate to the audience and provide something of value.