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15 Powerful SMS Marketing Tips and Best Practices [2024]

15 Powerful SMS Marketing Tips and Best Practices [2024]

When was the last time you actually read something in your SMS inbox? During the last few years, some of you might have ignored SMS as one of the means in your marketing campaign, but guess what? This is still one of the most preferred channels among billions of people out there.

Here, we have a list of 15 SMS marketing tips and tricks that might do wonders if you want to incorporate SMS into your marketing strategy. So, let’s begin!

15 Powerful SMS Marketing Tips

1. Start With Warm Welcome Messages

Once a customer subscribes to your SMS marketing campaign or signs up to become a friend of your brand, here’s the first thing you CAN’T forget at all costs: send them welcome messages. This is the moment you should immediately introduce or identify your brand.

welcome message example in sms marketing

Welcome messages don’t have to be anything overly long or fancy, but don’t make it too simple as this could be the customer’s first impression toward your brand. Remember, your welcome message can set the tone for all future interactions. It can be something like “Hi [customized customer’s name], welcome to [the brand’s name]. Here, we will provide you with specialized offers and the newest announcements for our special customers.” 

But if you want to go over the top, you can even include a coupon, promotion, or discount as a welcome gift for first-time buyers.

2. Keep Your Messages Short, But Engaging

When it comes to SMS marketing, you want the texts to be short and concise as much as possible. A lengthy introduction is unnecessary. Just a few sentences with a clear-cut call to action or question can already work wonders. But you may ask, how short should the texts be? The recommendation is that you should stay within the 200-character limit.

On top of this, if you want to make your texts even more engaging, you can use funny emojis, photos, stickers, or GIFs, which will humanize your brand even further.

One more thing to bear in mind is that you also shouldn’t send too many messages in one day. As a customer, you don’t want your inbox to be spammed by a lot of messages from business accounts, right?

3. Consider SMS Keywords For Customers To Opt In

Have you ever heard of SMS keywords before? The idea is simple: it’s a keyword that anyone can type to sign up and receive more texts from the brand. Due to its convenience, this method becomes one of the ways to gain more SMS subscribers and engage with customers even when they’re not on your website. 

When looking at the statistics, SMS’s engagement rates are quite impressive compared to email; SMS Marketing gains six to eight times higher engagement rates for retailers. SMS’s higher rates also apply to coupon redemption rates, open rates, and click-through rates.

sms keyword example

SMS keywords can be text-only or a combination of text and number, for instance, “UNICORN” or “TC2102”.

4. Let The Customers Know How To Opt Out Too

Since most businesses are sending texts only to those who have registered or allowed them to do so, once you have included SMS keywords for people who want to opt in, it’s equally essential to make it easy for customers to opt out. Include an unsubscribe option in your SMS marketing campaign and let them know about it upfront. 

Simple examples of opt-out texts include keywords like “Text STOP to stop receiving the latest news or promotions from us” or “Text UNSUBSCRIBE to cancel your subscription to our newsletter”.

5. Provide Some Exclusive Deals and Offers

Is there anyone who doesn’t like exclusive deals and offers? There probably are, but not many people. Offering promotions and discounts is one of the most effective ways to boost audience engagement, and SMS is one of the most cost-efficient mediums to do so. 

The numbers speak accordingly, as the survey clearly shows that 75% of consumers would love to receive special offers, discounts, and coupons via SMS.

promotion sms example

It doesn’t have to be anything fancy; just write something clear-cut and simple like: “Here’s your 30% off discount for Valentine’s Day; enter the code VDAY30 when you’re ordering from us.” or “The year-end sale is coming to town!”

Remember, don’t just wait for customers to reach out to you; be more proactive and give them incentives to shop with you!

6. Run a Giveaway or Contest

People love to get free stuff, especially from their favorite brands! You can use the SMS channel as an opportunity to promote. 

When having the idea of a contest or giveaway, you shouldn’t do it too often, but rather occasionally, like during Christmas, Valentine’s, or your brand’s anniversaries. 

The conditions should be easy to follow: texting a particular keyword, clicking like and following your page across every platform, reposting your ads, etc. Then, you can select (or randomly select) the winners who followed every condition. 

One thing you should remember is that contests and giveaways that generate the most leads are ones that (1) create a sense of urgency (2) use a partner to cross-promote (3) have a low bar to entry and (4) offer a tempting prize.

7. Announce New Products Launches

If you’re using SMS as your marketing channel, you can’t forget to utilize it for announcing new product launches! Send your subscribers a text like “Introducing our newest product! Get ready for [new product]. Available now on our website.”

However, this doesn’t have to be limited to just the launch date; you can also create ‘Counting Down’ or ‘Sneak Peek’ content.

Announcing new products via SMS is a golden opportunity to create buzz, build excitement among your regulars, and re-engage with customers who haven’t shopped with you for some time. The more time-sensitive the messages are, the more immediately customers might engage with you.

Make sure that once they’ve seen your new product launches, it’s easy for them to make a purchase, including a redirecting link to your website or the ecommerce platforms you’re on.

8. Reminder and Confirmation Texts Are Important

Ever wished that a travel business would send you a reminder that you have booked a flight in the next 3 days? Fortunately, many businesses have already adopted this approach. For instance, sending a reminder like “Your trip will depart in 24 hours,” “Your appointment with our clinic is on 8th February,” or “Your order will arrive at your door in 2 days (and if you let the customers track it, that would be even better!)” 

confirmation sms example

The bright side of this is consumers agree that SMS is one of the most convenient ways to stay in touch with a business. Statistics have shown that around two-thirds of people would rather text a business about appointments and scheduling than make a call or send an email.

9. Launch Drip Marketing Campaigns

First of all, you may ask, what exactly are drip campaigns? A drip marketing campaign is simply sending a limited number of texts to your audience, at a set time, based on specific actions, over a certain time period. Basically, try to imagine how water slowly drips into small drops as time goes by. 

With that being said, you can launch automated drip campaigns via text in various formats. It can be a text that welcomes new customers, a text that keeps customers engaged with the brand, a text to communicate good messages, a text that expresses regrets if they cancel subscriptions, and so on. For instance, you could send a 5% off coupon right after a new subscriber signs up, a 10% coupon after a customer has been using your app for three weeks, or even a discount if they decide to cancel their subscriptions. 

You’re incentivizing your customers by letting them know that the longer they shop with you, the bigger promotions they’re going to receive.”

10. Back-in-stock Notifications

When customers want to buy something and find out it’s out of stock, it’s quite tough news to hear. This is also bad news for businesses since what they can provide isn’t suited to the demand.

To bounce back from this situation, SMS marketing can help you find a solution: sending your customers a notification that the products they desire are back in stock, ensuring they don’t miss another opportunity. For instance, “Dear [customer’s name], we’ve got good news for you! [The product they wanted] is now back in stock as of today.”

While this SMS strategy might secure the sale you would have otherwise lost, it can also impress the customers on the other end.

11. The “Don’t Forget The Abandoned Shopping Carts” Texts

Just like people enjoy browsing brick-and-mortar stores, many online shoppers add items to their carts without intending immediate purchase them. In fact, data reveals a high average cart abandonment rate on ecommerce platforms, exceeding 70%.

SMS marketing can help recapture potential sales by reminding customers of abandoned items. 

Consider personalized messages like: “Hi [customer’s name], we noticed you left these items in your cart!” Adding incentives like “Enjoy 10% off if you complete your purchase now” can increase the chance of closing sales even more. This can help your business to maximize the potential revenue.

12. Remember To Spice Things Up During Events and Holidays!

No one wants to be bombarded with advertisements and direct sales all the time. It’s important to build a meaningful relationship with your customers too, and SMS can help your business bond with them more. Therefore, on holidays or special occasions, why not send them some heartfelt messages like “Happy holidays. Thank you for supporting our brand this year. We promise the best in this upcoming year!”.

holiday sms example

Furthermore, you can offer discounts and promotions to your customers during holidays and special occasions because people tend to shop more during this period anyway.

13. Get Ready for Live Messaging

In most cases, you probably have a list of preset SMS messages in store to send to your customers, whether it’s a welcome text, a deal during a special occasion, or a part of SMS drip campaigns. However, there might be times when your customers may start a conversation that requires customer care staff who are actual humans to take charge of the inbox. 

In order to do this quickly and smoothly, you can set up alerts for your staff to jump in as soon as possible. This kind of notification will let you, as the business owner, manage the inboxes seamlessly, hence increasing customer satisfaction on the other end too.

14. Create Memorable Post-purchase Experiences

Marketing is not only about driving more sales. Creating the best post-purchase customer experience is just as, if not more, important, and you can utilize SMS to do that. 

The texts can include important transactional information such as shipping delay notifications, billing updates, or even additional details about the products or services like providing tutorials, tips, and tricks for best results, or showing other customer reviews. 

All of this will ensure that the experience customers have from shopping with you is impressive, and this might, in turn, lead to second or third purchases from them.

15. Gather Feedback From Your Customers

It’s always the best idea to hear what your customers want or need. These days, many features allow you, as business owners, to ask for feedback from your customers. You might go for a survey or a quick-and-easy poll. It can be simple questions like “How was your experience shopping with us?”, “How satisfied were you during our event?”, or “Rate the number of stars you would like to give to our products”. Asking for feedback within your marketing campaign can be a great way to dig deeper into more customer insights. 

customer feedback sms example

The benefits don’t stop there. If you receive positive feedback regarding customer, product, or service experience, you could ask the user to leave a review publicly on whatever platform, in turn boosting more engagement from potential customers.

Power Your SMS Marketing Effort

You probably already have a basic idea of what an SMS marketing campaign should look like and might have seen some real-life examples by now. One final thing to remember is that all the tips and tricks we’ve provided here won’t turn into something successful unless you try them out for yourself.

We understand that launching your first SMS marketing campaign might not be easy, but we have an assistant that can alleviate a lot of your burden: Mandala AI, an all-rounded social media analytics tool. Let Mandala AI save you time while you grow your business. You can start the 15-day free trial now; the link is provided here.

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