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Beware of these seven SMS marketing disasters

SMS marketing apparently overcame its rough times – with online sources proclaiming it “no longer the ugly duckling” of marketing and meticulously reconsidering its value and the related campaign strategies.

However, in order for your marketing campaigns to fully benefit from this SMS revival, there are a few mistakes to avoid. Here’s a brief overview of some major errors you wouldn’t want to invite into your SMS marketing operations:

  1. Not knowing your customers

This is a definite faux pas, especially the utmost related mistake of sending SMS messages about your brand, services or products to random people who have not opted-in to receive your phone messages.

Unwanted SMS are illegal (since 2013), and usually do not get positive responses; on the contrary, your potential clients might feel harassed and annoyed by this type of unsolicited action.

The next line in knowing your customers would be to cleverly tailor your text messages in accordance with your customers’ characteristics; follow through client segmentation techniques and fit the message with the age, location and preferences of your potential clients; use CRM tools to measure the results in order to able to improve your strategy.

  1. Not getting through a clear message

Once you have an accurate image of your target audience, another lurking mistake lies in the process of conceiving the message itself.

An ambiguous message that does not clearly identify your company, your contact info, the promotion or offer you want to convey, and overall the driving motivation of your message (the specific value to offer) is worthless and may irritate the recipient or drive him/her to opt-out of receiving your future SMS.

In conclusion, avoid ambiguity, remember that the 160 characters of text are the maximum you can use, and be precise, concise and consistent. State your company and your offer clearly, mention all the necessary data and the limit dates – and above all go for a straightforward approach in a grammatically correct, un-abbreviated form.

  1. Sending your message at the wrong time

I remember how annoyed I used to be with this carrier company that used to send me promotional messages early in the morning, around 6:30 AM – and I quickly opted out of their promotional SMS service. This is but an example of what wrong timing can mean in SMS marketing.

Timing your message badly can mean you are sending it too early in the day, too late, or too often.

It can also mean a lack of coordination between the event promoted in the message and the message itself – your recipient might read about the event, be interested, but forget about it since your message arrived too early.

SMS encourages people to act on impulses, and it’s all about immediacy. Therefore think well what would the most auspicious hour be for your potential clients to receive your message, especially when you are able to work with personalization data/elements.

  1. Not integrating your SMS marketing campaign with the your other marketing channels

When approaching your customers via a SMS campaign, do not forget that your other marketing channels are also accessible to your target audience – to find out details, get to know your offer or simply to check out more about your brand, location, deals and presence on the market. Mention the benefits of SMS subscription on your other channels, underline the advantages your existing subscribers have, maybe add some thematic content to let the audience know your strategy and its relevance.

Integrating SMS with online advertising, content marketing, and any digital and print materials is part of a unitary brand presence – it shows consequence and professionalism.

It also directly links to building up your subscriber list – see number 7 on our list.

Interactive, integrated campaigns also enhance customer engagement.

  1. Not taking the SMS campaign seriously

By not including the SMS campaign planning, design and testing into your marketing team schedule, or by simply considering this type of campaign does not require a particular professional approach, you may waste an important opportunity, the funds you have invested in this type of advertising, as well as the future possibility of employing SMS as part of your strategies.

Better create and use a SMS marketing team. Convince and Convert mention in their previously quoted article the roles you’ll be needing to fill in for such a team to be complete, from an SMS marketing program expert, a retail expert, a coordinator for on-location signage to a digital creative designer, or a social media expert.

  1. Forgetting to build in a subscribers list

The key in building your email subscriber list lays in encouraging your loyal and visiting audience to opt-in via all your channels, from your online accounts (Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram), your official website and previously sent emails to your printed mail and your mobile channels.

Place your invitation wisely in your outreaching messages and instruct your employees to explain the benefits of SMS subscription to your customers.

  1. Not measuring your SMS campaign’s results or barely measuring them

This would be another strategy mistake, since without figures any business owner may easily underestimate the power of SMS marketing. The same numbers can tell what went wrong or point out what can be improved in your next campaign.

Generally, this type of marketing triggers high open rates, high conversion rates and high responsiveness rates, being the most effective way of reaching users – instantly.

Post-campaign analysis serves your team’s future marketing strategies, therefore it is a good idea to allocate time and procedures for this phase too.