Our guides and white papers are the perfect resource to quickly learn how to run successful text message marketing campaigns. Looking for information about Club Texting? Check out our Getting Started Guides.
Ready to learn how to build a list of customers for your text message marketing campaign? We’ve put together this guide to show you how to quickly, effectively build an opt-in list of customers who want to hear from your company. We’ve got tips, examples, and success stories from our clients. We’ll also show you what not to do – once you’ve built your list you’ll want to follow a set of best practices to make sure that your customers don’t opt-out from receiving future messages.
Before we go any further we need to explain some basic terms that we’re going to repeat a lot. If you’re already familiar with the lingo of text message marketing, jump on down to the next section.
Whether you’re hosting a 30,000 person concert or running a 100 person conference, text messaging is a great way to engage and build a future relationship with your audience. Banners, seat cards, bag inserts, and video displays are great places to display your call to action. Depending on your event you can offer potential subscribers special offers, event alerts or even basic information.
In Store Signage
If you own a brick-and-mortar business like a retail shop, a salon, a gym, a spa, or a restaurant – leverage your real estate. Put your call to action on signs throughout the store and put it in the windows!
Example: You own a bicycle shop and you are looking to create a buzz about new merchandise. Print up some signs asking customers to text BIKE to 25827 to receive a discount on the model you just got in.
Advertising on the radio? Don’t just shout at your potential customers. Let them get in touch with you! Mention your call-to-action and begin the conversation. Manage a radio station? Let your listeners text in song requests and build up your list.
You can’t drive down a highway without seeing at least one billboard. There’s no doubt billboards deliver tons of impressions. Leverage your spend by adding your call to action. For the consumers out there – remember not to text and drive.
Social Media Integration
Do you have a strong Facebook and/or Twitter presence? Tweet out your call to action to turn your followers into opt-in subscribers. Use web signup widgets on Facebook fan pages and your blog to allow consumers to type in their phone number to sign up for your list.
Already doing email marketing? Search engine marketing? You almost certainly have a website. These are all great places to promote your list and build up your subscriber count.
Examples: Add a signup widget to your website and encourage users to fill it out by offering them a deal. Running a Google AdWords campaign? If you can fit in your call to action you can get signups from people who don’t even click through to your website.
Run an email newsletter? Allow readers to opt into your text messaging list to receive either subscription discounts or new stories directly to their cell phones!
Information regarding opting out, receiving help, data message rates and frequency of messages should be included in any promotion.
These four rules are the most important to keep in mind, but you should familiarize yourself with all of the guidelines that apply to mobile marketing. The wireless carriers have set numerous regulations that you must heed in order to run your campaigns on their networks. The Mobile Marketing helps keep businesses and marketers up to date with carrier guidelines. Download their best practices guide at: http://mmaglobal.com/bestpractices.pdf.
Position It: Considering how, when, where and why you would want to communicate with your potential customers is extremely important. We suggest that you keep a number of things in mind as you expand your marketing efforts and build your list. For one, you should always try to offer some sort of reward or incentive for subscribing to receive messages from your company. Even if it’s only a one-time coupon, you want to give your customers some sort of a reason to text in. Another effective method is to make your bulk SMS program exclusive. What does that mean? Give customers access to something they could not have received otherwise. If a customer believes they are getting something exclusive, there is a greater chance of them ending up on your contact list.
Phrase It: Language and wording is extraordinarily important when trying to convey a clear message to a large number of people. You have to find the right way to phrase your call-to-action. We’ve seen what would have been great campaigns fail due to poorly phrased opt-in instructions. You want to keep the call-to-action simple and clear. For example: Text KEYWORD to Short Code for XYZ.
Here are some good examples:
Text SUBWAY to 42578 for $1 off your next foot long sub!
Text VOTE to 26118 to cast your vote of who should be the next American Idol!
At this point, as smartphones have become common, you want to be careful about instructing your customers to text your Keyword to the letters the short code spells out. What does that mean? 25827 is CLUBS on the keypad. If you’re running a marketing campaign – especially for a bar or nightclub – spelling out CLUBS is a powerful call-to-action. If you choose to go this route, we recommend that you put 25827 beside CLUBS.
Integrate It: Haven gotten this far, you probably already recognize this, but it’s worth repeating: It’s extremely important to integrate your SMS marketing promotion into all of your marketing campaigns. Just as you include your company’s phone number and website address on all of your advertisements (and perhaps your Facebook and Twitter URLs), you should also begin to include your text messaging call-to-action so that customers can get used to them and respond.
Building a list is a process which takes time and patience. Unless you’re running a brilliant viral campaign or have a massive budget, your list will not grow overnight. Experiment, be proactive, offer incentives, and in time SMS marketing will become a vital tool for your business.
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