Blog/Best Practices

SMS Challenge: How to Create Your Own

Here are the four steps you need to take to create a wildly successful SMS challenge.

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There’s no better—or easier—way to demonstrate your value to potential or existing customers than by creating an SMS challenge.

By sending people a simple series of SMS messages that show them how to achieve their goals, you’ll reinforce that:

  1. You’re invested in their success
  2. You can help them
  3. You’re an expert in your field

We’ve helped YMCA’s run six-week transformations, consultants share social media marketing tips, and even enabled one entrepreneur to launch a virtual organization program.

The best part is that you can automate the entire challenge from start to finish with minimal effort.

Skeptical? In this article we give you the exact blueprint to build your SMS challenge, whether it’s a 30-day program or a five-day mini challenge.   

What Is an SMS Challenge?

An SMS challenge is a series of text messages that provides tips or exercises aimed at helping people achieve a goal. It could be a 7-day ab building challenge to build killer abs or a 30-day business challenge that provides bite-sized steps toward the end result.

If you know your audience is interested in learning a particular skill or using a new tool, you can build an SMS challenge for them. 

How To Run an SMS Challenge

To explain how to run an SMS challenge from start to finish, let’s pretend we’re a fitness coaching business and we want to send our contacts a 5-day weight loss challenge. Here are the four steps:

1. Create a Keyword

A keyword is a word or phrase that your contacts can text to your number and sign up for your challenge. In this example, we’ll go with “5DAYFIT.” This video shows you how to create a keyword in less than 90 seconds.

When you create your keyword, you get to write a welcome message. Take this opportunity to let contacts know the rules they need to follow, what they’ll achieve by completing the challenge, its length, and other important details.

Today 11:00 AM
Welcome to the NDF Weight Loss Challenge! Check in each day for exercises and recipes that will help you reach your weight goals.
Msg&Data rates may apply. 1msg/wk. Reply HELP for help, STOP to cancel.

2. Advertise Your Keyword

Once you’ve set up your keyword, make sure  to promote it to your audience. You can advertise it on:

  • Your social media channels
  • Posters or other marketing materials
  • Your website

The takeaway is simple: put your keyword in as many places as possible. 

3. Set Up an Automated Drip Campaign

SimpleTexting lets you set up a series of automatic messages that each user receives after subscribing to your challenge. This means you don’t have to launch campaigns manually.

Your autoresponder is tied to the keyword and list you created in step three. This video shows you how easy it is to set up. 

You’ll simply set up a new autoresponder for each day of your challenge and schedule them to send on a delay (your first message will send right after they subscribe, day two will send the following day, and so on). 

When it comes to writing these messages, we recommend you:

  • Introduce the topic or action for the day, explain why it’s important, and include follow-up advice or encouragement. Keep your messages simple and easy to follow.
  • It sounds obvious, but you need to include a message in your SMS challenge that lets your contacts know it’s ending. Write a simple “Good job, you’re done!” text to finish your SMS challenge, along with next steps or a link to another program or resource.

4. Track Your Results

As you send out your SMS challenge, you’ll need to keep track of your analytics. We provide a detailed breakdown that includes:

  • Click-through rate on any links you include
  • Number of clicks
  • Responses
  • Number of unsubscribes

It helps to know how many people are participating and which messages get the best response. This will help you design better and more effective challenges going forward.

SMS Challenges: The Wrap-Up

Daily texts are a great motivator to get your audience moving toward their goals, both personal and professional. They’re also an easy way to share your knowledge and promote your services.

Ready to set up your own SMS challenge? Start your 14-day trial of SimpleTexting todayーno credit card required.

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