Top 5 SMS Marketing Mistakes & How to Avoid Them

SMS Marketing Tips

When used correctly SMS Marketing is one of the most effective digital marketing tools available. It offers some of the highest open and read rates compared to other digital channels, including:

  • An open rate of 98%
  • 90% of SMS are read within 3 minutes of being received

It allows you to communicate with your audience on the device that they use the most and that they check up to 80 times per day and spend 5 hours a day browsing on. When we consider these metrics, it is not surprising that SMS is enjoying a surge in popularity.

There are certain considerations when sending a bulk SMS marketing campaign, including avoiding the following:

  • Sending too many messages
  • Sending SMS with links to non-mobile friendly landing pages
  • Lack of opt-outs
  • Not investing in the time to build a substantial list
  • Lack of audience segmentation

Each of the above points will be addressed below to help you plan and send SMS marketing campaigns that will help you generate revenue and grow your business.

Sending Too Many Messages

Yes, there really can be too much of a good thing!

Even though SMS has such powerful metrics, you need to avoid sabotaging your own SMS marketing efforts by overloading your audience with messages. If you send SMS too frequently to your database, they are going to become disengaged with your brand and unsubscribe from receiving future messages.

The impressive metrics associated with the channel really do highlight that the device is something that users carry with them at all times, which can actually mean that as it is more personable, they are going to be more hesitant to give their mobile number to brands and companies. You may know from your own habits that consumers are more likely to provide an email address rather than a mobile number as phones provide a much more direct method of communication.

Therefore, you need to think carefully about how often you are going to contact your audience and at what time of the day. Ideally you should sit down and draw up a calendar of when you are going to contact them.

You should plan to only send a few messages per month to your recipients. This will help keep your company on their mind without bombarding them. If you are sending the right content to the right segments of your audience, this strategy will pay dividends and help to ensure that you enjoy strong increases in engagement.

Not Using Mobile Friendly Landing Pages

In 2020 with search engines’ shift towards mobile-first rankings, most websites are now mobile-friendly and optimised for visitors across a range of devices. However, there are still some that are not yet fully responsive and are therefore not providing a good user experience.

Ignore this at your peril as you will ultimately be wasting money as users are going to become frustrated and bounce off your website meaning that your conversion rate will suffer. It is becoming increasingly difficult to capture the attention of your audience, so you really need to ensure that you are not putting yourself at a disadvantage.

If you want to send SMS and drive the traffic to a landing page on your website but do not have a mobile friendly website, then you should consider the option of dedicated mobile landing pages that can be used to collect leads from your audience and assist in increasing revenue.

Lack of Opt-Outs

Not including opt-out options within your SMS is a major mistake that you really do not want to be making! It’s actually more than a best practice and is a regulatory requirement for every company that is sending SMS to its customers.

All senders must include the ability for users to opt-out of receiving SMS and instructions on how to do so. You should include these opt-out options in every SMS that you send and if a customer decides to remove themselves from your database, then you must ensure that this is done and cease all communications via SMS with this user.

Failure to follow these rules will mean that you are violating regulations and lead to trouble for your company.

Ensure that you do not fall foul of these regulations and include opt-out options that are clear and easy to follow. You should provide users with the option to reply with a shortcode that indicates that they no longer wish to receive SMS from your company and ensure that this is fully respected.

Not Growing Your List of Contacts

Building and growing your list of subscribers is one of the most important aspects of achieving a successful SMS marketing campaign. If you do not have a suitable strategy in place, then your performance will suffer, and you will not enjoy a strong return on investment. As SMS subscribers need to provide explicit consent to opt-in, the process of building and growing your list can take a bit longer compared to other channels.

However, there are several steps that can be taken to help ensure that you are using your time as efficiently and effectively as possible:

  • Ensure that your SMS channel is promoted across your website or store and tell users exactly how they can opt-in and receive SMS to keep in touch with you.
  • Combine the power of SMS with email marketing and tell your email database that you can now keep in touch with them via SMS. Providing an incentive around this such as 5% off their next purchase can prove to be very effective.
  • Provide opt-in options on your onsite registration forms but ensure that full and explicit consent is given.

Lack of Audience Segmentation

Failure to properly segment your audience is a major issue when it comes to SMS marketing.

SMS are more personal than emails and therefore you should treat the messages you send to your database in the same way.

Sending them personalised SMS that are centred around their specific interests will ensure that you are going to help increase your levels of engagement. Not only should you focus upon these interests, but you should also spend time analysing the data that you collect and use it to inform your future campaigns.

This should include determining when your contacts are most likely to open and interact with your messages. This means that you can contact them when you know that they are most likely to engage with your messages, meaning that this will assist in increasing conversions and generating increased amounts of revenue in the long-term.

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