Russell Marketing is a product launch marketing agency that’s raised millions of dollars for its clients. Here’s the role that texting plays in its launch strategies.
Russell Marketing helps entrepreneurs create and scale powerful marketing systems that turn strangers into prospects, customers, and lifelong advocates.
The team needed a way to overcome its clients’ declining open email rates and create multichannel strategies.
Not only is it a competitive advantage to offer SMS, but text messages have also helped companies like Comet Smart Nightstand raise over $600k.
Less than a third of crowdfunding campaigns reach their goals. It’s why entrepreneurs and early-stage startups come to a product launch agency like Russell Marketing.
The team takes businesses with no subscribers and no community and builds both from scratch–all in a short amount of time.
Like all high-performing marketing teams, they emphasize keeping up with the continuously evolving digital marketing landscape.
Looking at data from its campaigns at the start of 2020, the team noticed a problem: a lot of effort went into building email subscriber lists, but email open rates were firmly stuck between 30-50%.
It’s when they decided they needed another way to reach customers. All signs pointed to text marketing.
We spoke with Valerie Blomberg, an Account Manager, about the agency’s experience adding SMS to its product launch strategies.
Russell Marketing decided to add two new touchpoints to their marketing funnel to compensate for email’s declining performance: a Facebook group and SMS marketing.
When choosing a text messaging service, the team wanted one that integrated with the email platforms that Russell Marketing’s clients use.
At the top of that list is Mailchimp, a popular choice for early-stage startups. The team uses the one-click integration to synchronize subscribers between Mailchimp and SimpleTexting accounts.
Beyond the email integration, it was also essential that the platform was easy to use.
"The learning curve is really low. I’ve looked at quite a few texting platforms so far, and SimpleTexting is my favorite."
During the pre-launch phase, Russell Marketing uses landing pages to gather emails and numbers. Here’s an example from one client, Tumble.
While they typically send out weekly emails for launch clients, product launch text messages are sent less frequently, following a cardinal rule that all SMS messages must be valuable.
“We make sure that texts include a significant update, like a new add-on product, or when a stretch goal is unlocked.”
Valerie is a fan of how easy it is to send these campaigns and test out the process.
“There are a lot of helpful prompts and training materials recommending what you should include.”
Another strategy that the team uses is to include a link to a client’s Facebook group. It creates a circular loop where marketing channels are working together to create a community.
The team can then respond to incoming messages from these campaigns and see both delivery and click-through rates via SimpleTexting’s analytics and tweak its messages.
The Comet Smart Nightstand—one of Russell Marketing’s many clients that now benefit from SMS—has already raised over six hundred thousand dollars on the Indiegogo platform. Valerie attributes a key portion of this success to having that extra touchpoint to reach people who’ve joined the community. As she puts it:
“People check their email, but they get text messages.”
While it helps the agency drive even more impressive results, it’s also a competitive advantage that helps them stand out when pitching for new business.
"It’s given us a competitive advantage in 2020, and we’ll continue to send text messages into the next year."
Combining email and SMS marketing is a great way to supercharge your campaign results, and as Russell Marketing’s experience shows, it’s much more effective than relying on emails alone.
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