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How SMS Direct Marketing Works

How SMS Direct Marketing Works

SMS direct marketing has a place in almost every marketing strategy. Here are the three steps you need to follow to incorporate it into yours.

Direct marketing is a term that has a bad rep. It’s associated with junk mail and cold calls from people trying to sell you something.

But–despite the perception many marketers have–it’s adapted to the modern age. 

In fact, there’s now a drive to build direct relationships with customers. Businesses realize it’s too risky to rely on rented traffic from Facebook and Google.

One direct response channel that stands out from the rest is SMS marketing. We’ll dive into why that’s the case and also cover how it works.

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Why SMS Makes a Powerful Direct Marketing Channel

If you’re wondering what makes SMS such a powerful marketing medium, there are three clear reasons.

Rise of Mobile Device Usage and Web Traffic

70% of web traffic in the U.S. now comes from mobile phones. Yet not a lot of businesses do any specific mobile marketing. 

That’s a missed opportunity. Americans spend close to three hours a day on their phones, so it makes sense to reach them where they already are active.

Declining Performance of Email Marketing

Another trend driving SMS is the declining performance of another popular direct marketing channel: email. 

While email is still a profitable channel, click-through and open rates have declined steadily over the past decade.

Channel Preferences

As millennials surpass Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation, their preferences mean they reward brands who send text messages.

"We can attribute the 20% increase in revenue to using text messages to promote this year’s sale. We’re delighted with SimpleTexting."

Kaitlin Brodeur

Kaitlin Brodeur

Marketing Executive

Get Started With SMS Direct Response Marketing in Three Steps

While certain marketing tactics aim to increase awareness or educated potential buyers, direct marketing’s goal is to persuade the recipient to take action. 

To do this, you need to:

1. Identify those interested

2. Build an ongoing relationship 

3. Test and measure the effectiveness of your campaigns

1. Identify Those Interested 

The recipients of direct marketing are typically people who have shown they have an interest or need in your company’s product. 

This has two related benefits:

  • Direct marketing often has a much higher ROI, since you know that people are already interested in your marketing campaigns.
  • It’s more cost-effective and efficient to market to people who are interested in what you’re selling.

It’s one of the reasons SMS makes for an excellent direct response channel: people need to proactively agree to receive your SMS messages.

There are many ways you can grow your text list

However, if you’re after 670% list growth, then we recommend you target your mobile traffic using our mobile sign-up widget

When someone clicks on it, their phone’s native messaging app opens with your phone number and keyword prefilled:

If you don’t want to add the widget to your site, don’t worry. Here are nine other ways you can collect phone numbers.

2. Build an Ongoing Relationship

SMS and engagement have become synonymous with each other.

The reason? Building an ongoing relationship requires active participation from both parties. And SMS is a digital marketing channel that’s highly interactive and personal.

With an SMS promotion, you can make the recipient feel it’s meant just for them.

Today 3:30 PM
Hello Lisa! Just to let you know your favorite shorts are back in stock. They’re going very fast, so be sure to grab a pair before they’re gone!

We’ve seen organizations use different types of personalization tactics to achieve this, including:

  • Location-Based Personalization: if you have multiple locations, then sending marketing messages based on a subscriber’s location is an excellent tactic.
  • Behavioral Personalization: these texts are based on the actions someone takes and include abandoned cart texts, restock alert SMS, and SMS renewal reminders.
  • Past-Purchase Personalization: start personalizing your text message marketing by recommending more purchases or actions based on a reader’s past ones.

By doing this, you give existing and potential customers a unique, memorable message that is likely to drive them to take action.

3. Test and Measure the Effectiveness of Your Campaigns

One of the benefits of SMS direct response marketing is that you know: 

  • How many people received your SMS campaign 
  • The response rate, click-through rate, and conversion rate 
  • The exact cost per sale or action

Over the course of several months, you can test out what works best for your audience. You could also run an SMS marketing campaign A/B test to see the impact of different offers. 

Use SMS Direct Marketing to Drive Revenue

While building awareness of your brand and educating customers about what you do is an integral part of marketing, sometimes you need to see an immediate impact on revenue.

We’ve seen customers use the three steps above to:

If you want to see similar results, you can sign up for a 14-day free trial. And, if you have questions about getting set up, email us at [email protected]

Up next in Getting Started

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Mass Text Messaging: Features of Mass SMS Services

Mass text messaging services allow you to send one text to tens, hundreds, or thousands of people at once. Learn more about how ours works.


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