Segments, custom fields, MMS, triggers. The list of features you can use to optimize your SMS marketing campaigns goes on and on.
But perhaps one of the easiest and most effective tools at your disposal is the text message autoresponder.
Let’s dig in to what text message autoresponders are, why they’re essential to your business, and how to get them set up.
Autoresponders are messages that send automatically after a subscriber joins your list. If you’ve ever set up an email drip campaign, autoresponders are very similar.
You can create one or many text message autoresponders to be sent at specific time intervals after your subscriber has opted in. You can even include photos to elevate your message!
This means you can send your customers a text an hour, a day, a week, or even a month after they join your list.
First impressions matter. Text message autoresponders are an easy way to make sure the newest additions to your list feel welcome.
Plus, by automating lead management, you reduce the amount of work you and your marketing team have to do. Regularly engaging with your audience is essential if you want to turn subscribers into customers.
There are many easy and convenient ways to use text message autoresponders. It’s easy to string together multiple autoresponders (for example, spaced a week apart) to create a promotional program that anyone can join at any time.
Here are just a few other helpful ways to use text message autoresponders:
Introduce yourself to new customers, and keep your brand top of mind by sending out a staggered series of welcome messages.
Help walk new customers or employees through the onboarding process via text. New subscribers will start with step #1, no matter when they sign up.
Staggered series of coupons
Keep your customers coming back with increasingly enticing coupons and promotions.
Need to remind patients or clients to reschedule in 6 months? Now, all it takes is a simple text that you can set and forget.
You can set up a series of autoresponders for any of your contacts lists. No matter where a user joins from, they’ll be added to the sequence.
Whether you add a contact via an import, from a web form, or even using our Mailchimp sync feature, they’ll automatically begin receiving messages without any extra work on your end.
Customer journey is just marketing talk for what your customers do before they buy your product, go to your event, donate money, or complete whatever action you’d like them to do.
Think of the customer journey as a map and your autoresponders as checkpoints along the way. By understanding where your customer is on their journey, you can deliver the right information at the right time.
There’s no one-size-fits-all solution for developing a customer journey, but let’s walk through a basic example for Joe’s Pizza. These are the steps a customer may go through before they buy a slice:
Get Their Attention
First, a customer may see an online ad for Joe’s Pizza with a call to action that says, “Text JOES to 711711 for exclusive deals on the best pizza in town.” The first autoresponder a new subscriber should receive is a welcome message saying thanks.
Then Make Them Stick Around
After a customer joins your list, send a series of autoresponders to keep your brand top of mind. Joe’s Pizza may send out a text informing new customers about the new special on basil pizza.
Finally, Give Them Something to Buy
SMS messages are a great way to build relationships with customers. Ultimately, of course, the goal is to increase sales. Now’s a good time for Joe’s Pizza to send out a discount.
We’ve made the whole process incredibly simple. Let’s see how autoresponders work:
Let’s say Joe’s Pizza wants to set up a staggered coupon program: one coupon a week for four weeks.
First, click the “Autoresponders” button under the Messages tab.
Then click “New Autoresponder.”
Give the autoresponder a title (for reference only—subscribers won’t see it), assign it to a list, and compose your message.
Now the most crucial part: the delay. Joe’s Pizza wants customers to get the coupon as soon as they opt-in, so you’ll want to select the “Immediately after opt-in” button.
Click “Save Autoresponder” and compose the next one. This time, simply set the delay for one week. Your delay can also be set for minutes, hours, days, or months.
Continue this process for the other messages. Soon Joe’s Pizza will have their entire coupon program set up.
Want to ensure your messages won’t send on certain days or times? No problem! If you select “Advanced scheduling options,” you can specify exactly when you want your messages delivered.
For example, if you set your delivery window from 8 am to 8 pm, a subscriber who joins the sequence at midnight won’t receive your scheduled messages until 8 am the next day (as opposed to midnight every time!)
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