Using Text Messaging to Market Your BusinessEditor
Nowadays, it’s uncommon to see someone’s face, let alone make eye contact. Everyone is on their phones. They’re texting, Facebooking, Snapchatting, Tweeting, taking pictures and videos. It’s immediate gratification. At times it’s annoying. It’s the new way to market your business. You may as well embrace it and use it for good!
More people, Millennials in particular but not solely, communicate by text message. I’m in my 40’s (sshhh) and I can tell you that the best way to get in touch with me is via text. Retailers know this and are capitalizing on it. Every day, and I’m not exaggerating, I get a text from one of my favorite businesses with sale alerts and such. I also get notifications about local emergencies or road closures in my area. And as someone that likes to keep up on breaking news, I also get news alerts. This method of notification is convenient and to the point. When you’re busy, as most of us are, that is a huge plus.
You may already use emails to get the word out about happenings in your business, which is great. But if you want to move to the next level and increase your odds of being seen, consider text marketing. As mentioned earlier, texts are immediate and are opened faster than email. People receive an abundance of emails every day. Because of that, marketing emails get ignored much more frequently. I’m not insinuating that you should stop that avenue, instead, add on to it.
One of the great things about text marketing is that the customer (or potential customer) opts-in. This gives you permission to send SMS text messages. The great thing about opt-in prospects, is that they are showing interest in what you’re offering by signing up. This makes the “lead” much warmer and more likely to get results.
Then there’s the short and sweet aspect we love so much. A text message is typically a sentence or two. The likelihood of a text being read is much greater. Include whatever promotion you’re running and any “discount codes” if applicable. Include a link to direct them where to go to see further details within that text. That’s all the information you need to give and your customer needs to see.
Text marketing is also affordable! There are many platforms that offer group text programs. Much like sending emails, you’ll have a list that is used to send one text to all of your opted-in contacts. You can even schedule when a text is going out. I love scheduled texting. Many times I think of something at a crazy hour of the day (or night). It’s usually not an ideal time to send texts though. I construct a text and schedule it for a more reasonable hour, since I don’t always trust that I’ll remember. It’s brilliant.
Taking things yet another step, you can utilize texts to get feedback from your customers. You may have received surveys from your cell phone provider, for example, asking your opinion about their service. It’s an interactive tool that allows them to ask questions and for the customer to answer as they’re able. People being busy, will not always sit through one a 10-minute online survey. But with text surveys, we can answer a question and not answer the next one till we get back to our phones.
Since most people are owners of smartphones, you can reach more people than ever before. There are many resources online to find programs for group text campaigns. You’ll also be able to find some ideas on what types of promotions get the best results. And if you have a Millennial working for you, why not delegate that task to them!