Category Archives: SMS Marketing

Black Friday 2019 Sale – Get 20% Extra SMS for Free

Year on year Black Friday gets bigger and bigger, with more people purchasing, more retailers offering a Black Friday sale, and ultimately more money being spent.

This year is no different, we have predicted that the UK will spend a whopping £2 Billion in online sales on the day itself! And to help you, we have put together a post on when the best time is to send your Black Friday SMS campaign, with one extremely popular day being a few days before Black Friday – read more here.

With the increase in popularity and consumer spend, that means you are going to need more SMS to tell your customers about your amazing Black Friday sale. And with Text Marketer, more SMS doesn’t mean spending more money.

The extra credits can go a long way in making your campaign a success. Many of our customers are also sending a follow-up campaign as a reminder message after all you want to make sure that your message is making an impact amongst the crowd.

Introducing our Black Friday 20% Free SMS credits offer.

Any purchase over 1,000 credits between Monday 11th November – Cyber Monday 2nd December will receive an extra 20% SMS credits for free!

So by purchasing more SMS credits, we will give you more SMS completely free, it really is that simple.

To claim, forward your invoice to support@textmarketer.co.uk with the header BLACKFRIDAY – the offer CANNOT be used with any existing offer or discount, but can be used multiple times during the period.

Please see our T&Cs for more information (Section 14 – 14.1)

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Our predictions for Black Friday 2019

It’s that time of year again where we look at the previous few years statistics and we rack our brains trying to predict what Black Friday and Cyber Monday could look like in 2019.

We’re getting pretty good at it. In 2017 we predicted that UK shoppers would spend £8.7 billion and even though we overshot it, the final figure turned out to be £8 billion! So how did we do last year?

Well we predicted:

  • £9.2 billion Total 4-day Black Friday Weekend
  • £1.7 billion online sales on Black Friday
  • £1.5 billion online sales on Cyber Monday

And in some of these, we were very close.

With online sales booming…

£1.49 billion online sales Black Friday 2018 ncrease of 7.3% from 2017

What feels like a four-day sale weekend is now a week-long bonanza with 67% of all discounts being offered from the Monday before presenting businesses with more opportunity to take advantage of shoppers looking around for the best deals.

Perhaps the best and most exciting news from last year is that 

“the first time ever mobile phones were the preferred method of shopping, with 56 per cent of all online transactions made via a smartphone”

With this news, you would have to be a fool to not consider sending an SMS campaign, after all, your customers are already going to be on their mobile phones looking for the best deals. Take this opportunity to let them know that you have got a great offer for them.

We predict that £2 billion will be spent online during Black Friday in 2019 and that mobile traffic will account for a large percentage of this!

By sending customers a text message which boasts a high open rate of 98%, you can almost guarantee your message is read. Including a link to your site in the body of your message drives further traffic to your website, making SMS a cheap way of getting your customers attention and engaging with them. We’ve got lots of tips to help you write the perfect message.

If you haven’t already got an SMS account, make sure you don’t miss out on millions of shoppers looking for great deals and sign up with an account today and start your Black Friday campaign the right way, with SMS marketing.

The post Our predictions for Black Friday 2019 appeared first on Textmarketer.

Never too early to prepare for Black Friday

We know, it’s unbelievably that time of year again, it’s coming up to Black Friday. The biggest and best sales period of the year, the sales phenomenon that sends everyone into a complete purchasing frenzy! And we have good reason to think that this year could be even bigger!

Every year the Black Friday sales increase and get bigger and better, and in a quest to grab more sales, it seems that retailers launch their Black Friday sales a little earlier, and leave them running a little longer every year. 

This year, Black Friday falls on the last Friday of the month, Friday 29th November.

Which means this year’s Black Friday falls on pay day! Which could be a huge monumental boost for retailers and make this Black Friday EVEN BIGGER!!

Every year customers are ready, waiting and on the hunt for the best Black Friday deals, they are actively searching for offers – they want to hear from you.

Whether they are on the lookout for some personal treats, and why not!? Or thinking ahead and looking to buy some Christmas presents, November is the perfect time to be sending out messages to your customers.

The early bird catches the worm.

Now, we are in no way suggesting that you start your Black Friday campaign now, that would be silly. However we do suggest you start to think about how you are going to approach Black Friday, start to plan everything, get your graphics ready, think about your offers, and think about when you are going to send your SMS messages.

98% of all messages are read, and 95% of messages are read within the first 90 seconds. (Source: Gartner)

The timing of your SMS messages is really important, so think about the days you are going to send your SMS messages on and also the time. Most retailers are now running their Black Friday deals for 2 weeks, so we would suggest sending an SMS campaign at the start of your Black Friday offer, the Monday of Black Friday week, and also on Black Friday itself.

But don’t forget Cyber Monday!

This year Cyber Monday strangely falls into December. With Black Friday falling on payday, it could be a bumper weekend and Monday of sales to capitalise on.

Have you tried our SMS Web Pages yet?

We all know that SMS is the most powerful marketing tool out there, but wouldn’t it be great if you could add some beautiful images, catchy headlines, splashes of colour and call to action buttons but still get the same amazing open rates of SMS?

Well you can! With our SMS Web Pages, you can send bespoke mobile landing pages to your customers, filled with your images, graphics and details on your offers. It works as an amazing way to entice your customers with your products. 

If you would like to ask any questions about how you can make the most out of Black Friday, or you would like to know more about SMS Web Pages, then please do not hesitate to get in touch. Sign up for your free SMS marketing account here.

The post Never too early to prepare for Black Friday appeared first on Textmarketer.

Summer sports event calendar – SMS and sporting events, a match made in heaven

For any major sporting event or just a big game, we know that just before and even during is the perfect time to send a text message promoting your takeaway. Sports fans will be getting ready to watch their team and nothing goes better whilst watching sport than a few snacks and drinks.

But it isn’t just food outlets that can benefit from sports events, we also know that for those who are watching the event, they will be messaging their friends about it, and those who are stuck at work, they will be checking the results online. Both using our favourite little device, the mobile phone.

This all means that when sporting events are on, the UK public will have their mobile phones within arm’s reach at all times and will be checking it constantly. So, promoting your sale just before and during football, rugby, cricket, or any sporting event, is the perfect time to do so. As when that phone ‘bings’ with your message, your customers will check it immediately.

Therefore, when there is a whole Summer and even Autumn packaged with major sporting events, you know the whole of the UK will be packed around their TV’s – perfect for some well times SMS campaigns.

To help you get on top of what sporting events are happening we have put together a handy Summer sporting calendar showcasing the major sports events this Summer and Autumn. All these sporting events provide businesses with the perfect opportunity to message customers.

The post Summer sports event calendar – SMS and sporting events, a match made in heaven appeared first on Textmarketer.

The Sizzling Summer Sale from Text Marketer

After what seemed like a miserable start to the Summer, the sun has finally arrived and with the help of the sun, we thought we would brighten up your Summer and bring you our next SMS sale.

Named the Sizzling Summer Sale not only because of the heatwave that will be hitting the UK (fingers crossed) but because you can get 10% free credits which we think is quite sizzling . . . Also because like all our other sales, we like alliteration.

But don’t go into this sale thinking that because you aren’t planning on sending a campaign over the Summer, or as you already have a load of credits in your account, that you shouldn’t buy any more. No no no, that is the wrong way to think about it, because your credits won’t expire on live accounts you can top up now, ready for your next big send or just top up now and use them whenever you like – this is a great chance to grab some free credits.

Any purchase over 1,000 credits will receive an extra 10% SMS credits for free! – offer ends Saturday 31st August

To claim, forward your invoice to support@textmarketer.co.uk with the subject line Summer Sale – the offer CANNOT be used with any existing offer or discount, but can be used multiple times during the period.

Make sure you top up with some free credits and have a sizzling summer sale yourselves.

The proof business SMS is still alive, kicking and very much growing

“Isn’t SMS dead?”

A question that drives our sales team crazy and makes our marketers sad. Yet it is a question that we hear time and time again, and to those that know us and our love of SMS, every time we hear that dreaded question, it breaks our heart – but it also couldn’t be further from the truth.

We know SMS is amazing and works wonders for businesses, with more businesses everyday using SMS to send updates, delivery notifications, reminders, bulk sale messages, and generally using it to connect with their customers. Yet we still get asked . . .

“But isn’t SMS dead?”

Over the past few years to combat this and showcase the power of SMS we have created blogs showing all the creative ways businesses are using SMS to connect with their customers, the effectiveness of SMS marketing, and even our own survey to see if businesses still think SMS marketing works in today’s modern world. Yet still . . .

“But isn’t SMS dead?”

Knowing those posts aren’t enough, we went to Google and asked them . . . And they agree with us!

More people are showing an interest in SMS marketing globally, with the interest rate on Google Trends increasing year on year by 3.3% from 2016 to 2018, with that looking to increase a further 5.4% in 2019 based on the interest shown so far (Source: Google Trends).

Yet still, even with Google in our corner, we know what people will ask.

“But isn’t SMS dead?”

Well enough is enough, we are determined to show you how SMS is still growing and will never stop! This time we delved into our own data to show you how more businesses are sending SMS every year.

We looked at how many messages are being sent out through our system, how many times we top 1 million messages a day, and on average how many messages customers send out a year. So, after this, we expect to hear . . . “WOW! I never knew how many text messages businesses were sending. I want to use in”

*Forecast

The consumer shopping journey – how mobile phones have changed the landscape for retailers

For some retailers’ the mobile phone has been revolutionary and helped drive them forward and dramatically grow, whilst other retailers’ who have not embraced the mobile phone, have ultimately had to close their doors.

Fighting on behalf of the mobile phone, as you all know we love them, it is not their fault, they are just an innocent bystander in this scenario, the fault lies with the retailers themselves.

Before we look at how the smartphones have revolutionised consumers shopping experience, we must first look back at how consumers shopped before the introduction of the mobile phone to really see the true value of the mobile phone.

Looking for ideas
Back in the late 90s for anyone who wanted to look for ideas of clothing or gifts, they would either have had to physically go into stores. The only other way was to pick up a catalogue and flick through the pages. Websites were around in the late 90s and early 2000s, but only the very big retailers would have had one and browsing these sites would have been slow and tedious.

Making the purchase
Again, the only two ways to purchase something from a retailer would have been through a catalogue or visiting the retailers store. Two very long and slow processes, especially if you did not live near a large town.

What happens now
With the popularity of mobile devices and the fact consumers can look for ideas stood in the middle of a field, hundreds of miles away from a shop, see something they like and purchase it right then and there, there is no need to ever go into a store.

For those who do visit the store, the vast majority will find what they want to buy, then go onto their mobile phones and see if they can find it cheaper online.

7 out of 10 mobile users interact with their devices in the store while they are shopping (Source: Google Mobile Movement Study)

This means brick and mortar stores are not only battling with other physical stores, but against millions of online retailers.

What has happened to some of the big retailers?
Some huge retailers have shut shop over the past 10 years or so, and whilst we aren’t saying that they all went under because they ignored the popularity of mobile phones, we would almost guarantee had they embraced it and seen how consumers were using it to do their shopping, their doors may still be open today.

Retail shops that have closed

From the above list of retailers who closed down in recent years, Jane Norman is a prime example of a retailer who took no notice of their target audience and this shut shop in 2011.

Jane Norman were a huge, they built their brand on selling clothes to 16 to 25-year-olds and peaked in the 90s. Back in the 90s mobile phones were not readily available so there was no need to offer a mobile solution, but when they closed shop in 2011, smartphones were being widely used and just a year after they closed in 2012, 66% of their target audience 16 to 24-year-olds owned a smartphone (Source: Statista).

So, their decision to ignore the popularity of mobile phones may well have been the final nail in their coffin.

What your business can do to embrace the mobile phone

To ensure that you are not the next Zavvi or Jane Norman, below are some easy wins to help you offer customers a mobile experience that matches, and in some cases even beats the in store experience.

Mobile friendly website
Number 1 on your list is to ensure your mobile website works seamlessly and consumers can browse it, look for ideas, and make a purchase just as easy as coming into your store or using a desktop computer.

From 2011 to 2018 M-commerce retail sales have increased by 762% from £ 910 Million to £7.84 Billion (Source: Statista)

With the huge increase in mobile sales for retailers, not offering consumers a mobile friendly website or if your mobile site is slow, can dramatically hurt sales. In fact a one second delay in mobile load times can impact mobile conversions by up to 20% (Source: Google/Ipsos).

For some great tips on how you can speed up your website and get more sales read our blog here.

Multiple communication channels
Offer consumers as many ways as possible for them to be able to get in contact with you, whether it is for customer support or they just want to ask a question. But what you must do, is make it easy for them to find them, offering 10 ways for them to contact you is great, but if consumers are struggling to find these then it is a wasted resource.

Apart from the obvious two of a phone number and email address, there are 2 other ways that you can utilise the consumers mobile phone.

Keyword – Use a Keyword that can be displayed on your website, in store, or on flyers/posters, and allow customers to it to get in contact with you.
“Text ORDER followed by your receipt number to 88802 to get an update on your delivery”

Virtual Mobile Number –-Similar to a Keyword, you can use a Virtual Mobile Number to allow customers to message you.
“If you have any questions about products, our website, delivery, or anything else, text us on 447123456789 and someone will be in touch”

Integration between online and in store
Like Casey Carl said; “They (consumers) want to flow seamlessly across all of our channels”. Consumers want to shop online and in store and have the same amazing experience. But to achieve this you need to look at both your online and physical store.

Show availability information – Number one on the list is to ensure that both your online and physical store match up.

75% of consumers expect retailers to have product availability information before visiting in store (Source: Capgemini)

You do not want your website showing that you have items in store and when your customers come in they find out it is not there. This will infuriate them, and potential mean you have lost that customer.

Think about what you do well online – Can you replicate what you do well on your website that you can do in your store? Maybe consumers love the fact that they can easily speak with someone through your website, so ensuring that your staff are just as friendly and knowledgeable is key.

You need to remember that buying both online or in store should provide the same amazing experience that will make customers come back for more.

The journey doesn’t stop when they have purchased
Just because someone has purchased from you doesn’t mean the communication should stop. Now is the perfect time to go the extra mile and drive home your amazing customer service and turn them from a one-time purchase into a customer for life.

There are 3 simple ways you can keep in contact with consumers after they have bought from you.

Delivery notifications – Make sure you send delivery notifications and updates, providing customers each time an option to update their delivery date and time.

Survey – Send a survey to customers and ask a couple of key questions about how they found your website, service, and product which will help you understand your strengths and weaknesses.

Follow up message – 6 to 10 weeks after your customer made their purchase, send them a message either offering them a discount, some suggestions of what other products you have, or even just a friendly hello to remind them you are still there.

 

Consumer shopping habits will constantly change and evolve and ensuring that you keep up with the new trends and technology can be tough. But using SMS as part of your marketing, sales, and even support can be a very simple but very effective communication method.

4 reasons why customers stop using the Text Marketer ship

That’s right, we see ourselves as a shiny ship with great big sails and every time we get a new customer, it is like a new shipmate has come on board and decided to sail the Text Marketer ship. We know, very sad, but look how amazing our ship is.

However, every so often one of our customers stops using us, they have decided to walk the proverbial plank. Every time this happens we shed a little tear, not just because we lose a customer, but because we know thousands of their customers will no longer be receiving a great mobile experience from them.

We have trawled through the data and have identified the 4 main reasons why businesses stop using us, and we have decided that the best way to showcase these, is with ship analogies.

1. Your ship never leaves the dock anymore
2. Your ship doesn’t have a map or compass
3. There was another ship that didn’t cost as much to run
4. A shinier ship came along, and you decided to board it

For those who don’t understand our amazing ship analogies, we have, in plain non-ship language, explained them all in more detail below. Which isn’t as fun.

1. Just stopped sending SMS

Amazingly we do see customers just stop using our service, and what is worse they have hundreds and sometime thousands of credits on their account. This can be a real head scratcher.

Boat not in service

We tend to see that the main reason behind the random drop off is that sending customers a text message was taking up too much time. This completely baffles us as we know it takes less than 10 minutes to set up and send a text message to tens of thousands of customers.

Out of our 4 reasons, this is the hardest to tackle, but we wanted to reiterate how amazing SMS is and why all businesses should continue to use SMS to communicate with their customers.

87% of people always have their smartphone at their side, day and night (Source: Google)

Sales prospects who are sent a text message convert at a rate 40% higher than those who are not sent any text messages (OneReach)

90% of users who enrol in an SMS loyalty program feel they gained value from it (Source: Hipcricket)

58% of companies now have a dedicated mobile marketing team (Source: Salesforce)

If you are struggling for time, why not take a simple approach and only send an SMS to customers for major events. Set a plan where you pick 3-4 big occasions, like a sale, a new product or service release, or just wishing them a happy holiday, and only send a bulk SMS campaign at these times. This means you can plan your time easily without it effecting your day to day schedule.

2. Haven’t been tacking ROI

A cardinal sin this one, before you send any marketing or sales message, make sure you have a goal. Whether that is total clicks of a URL, calls, replies, sales, enquiries. You NEED to track it, so you know exactly how well it went.

Boat lost at sea

Now we know a lot of people are put off at this point, as tracking a goal seems like a long and daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Below are a few ways you can easily track different goals quick and easily.

Sales – The most important information you need to track is when sending a sale or promotional message through SMS. To track this, you can use something called UTM parameters. This is a small bit of extra information at the end of your URL. For more information about how to use UTM parameters read this article by Google.

URL clicks – We have a free feature that you can use to track the clicks on your URL within your text message. Simply include a URL within the text message and click ‘URL Shorten’ icon. This will then shorten your URL where within the ‘Analytics’ section you can see exactly who has clicked your link and how many times.

Enquiry’s/replies – If you want people to fill in a form once you have sent them an SMS message, use a dedicated SMS form on your website that can only be accessed when you send them the link via a text message.

Another way to track enquiries or replies, is by using a keyword. For example, ask recipients to reply to your message by texting you keyword to our short code. You could use different keywords for different text messages and track exactly who and how many people reply.

“If you are interested in coming to our next event, reply EVENT to 88802 and we will send you more information about it”

3. Found a cheaper supplier

We know, a shock, someone is cheaper than Text Marketer! Yes, it is true there are one or two SMS providers out their offering a cheaper service, but before you go jumping ship to the cheaper provider, make sure you do your research.

Big ship and small ship

You may actually be able to get the same price per SMS with us as you can buy larger bundles of SMS for less. Meaning buying more credits at once would save you money. We also regularly run SMS sales, where you can get anywhere from 10% to 20% extra free.

If, however the other provider is cheaper, you need to compare the actual service and product, you can buy a boat for £100 or £100,000 – both technically are boats, just one may sink half way through your journey.

Are they using grey routes – These are routes that are not directly connected with the networks. They use a 3rd party to send your messages, typically the 3rd party will be outside the UK, meaning your data and messages are being pushed outside the UK to these 3rd party’s and then back to the UK, which can dramatically delay them being delivered, if at all. Many times, customers have come back telling us that their delivery rate dramatically dropped with the new provider.

How good is their support – Yes, the support may be fantastic to start with, but this is so they get you on board, this can deteriorate very quickly after a few months. Make sure you check reviews of the SMS provider you are switching to, is the customer service good, or are there lots of bad reviews about it? We are currently sat at 9.6 on Trustpilot and there is no other SMS provider that is higher.

Platform ease of use – We have worked extremely hard to make Message Box as user friendly as possible, and we are yet to see another provider that offers the same user experience. We have seen customers leave us, to only come back a couple of months later because after using their new SMS provider system for a while, they found multiple flaws and problems with it.

4. Sold on extra features by other provider

One of the reasons we can offer such low prices is because we don’t offer absolutely everything, but just because another provider offers a service that we don’t, do you really need all those bells and whistles?

Big fancy ship on the sea

We know some SMS providers who offer services that we know are, to put it frankly, completely and utterly pointless. Take MMS for example, there are providers out there that offer this service and will tell you that it is amazing. But sending picture messages and videos can really irritate your customers as it can cost them money? Could this not be achieved by sending a link to the picture or video in?

For most businesses they don’t need all these extra features and 9 times out of 10 a basic SMS message with a link to your website will suffice.

 

We know that SMS isn’t for everyone, but before you decide to set sail on another big shinny ship, just make sure you aren’t boarding the Titanic. We all know how that faired . . .

Example reminder messages to send to customers

The human brain cannot hold an infinite amount of information, which means the appointment or booking they made with you is probably not high up on their list of things to remember. Which ultimately means it is something they will forget about, costing you time and money in the process.

Missed appointments are a real drain on businesses, with it reportedly costing the NHS a staggering £216m a year

Sending appointment reminders will not only reduce missed appointments, saving you money, but customers satisfaction will also increase as a result, making them feel like their booking is truly important to you, and you really don’t want them to miss it.

Simple SMS reminders are great, but by making them personal and including the customers name, date and time of appointment/booking, and any other information you think they would need, will really help drive fewer missed appointments.

The general SMS reminder messages we see going out are all around customers bookings or appointments, but these aren’t the only two types of activities that businesses can remind customers about. You can remind customers about taking their medicine, reminders how to stay healthy, to book MOT, car insurance, and phone contract renewal to name just a few. It really is an endless list.

To help you write your own reminder message we have created a whole bunch of sample SMS reminder messages that you can copy and adapt to your requirements.

Appointment reminder messages – doctors/opticians
“Don’t forget your doctor’s appointment at 10.30am today with Dr Smith. If you need to reschedule, please call the surgery on 0123 456 7890”

“We have you booked in for your eye appointment tomorrow at 1.30pm and didn’t want you to forget. To reschedule please fill out this form www.link.com”

Booking reminder messages – hotels
“We are looking forward to you staying with us on the 29th July until the 2nd of August at the Plaza Hotel. If you have any specific requirements, please fill out this form www.link.com”

“Hi Louis, your room is being prepared and will be ready for you to check in from 2:00pm tomorrow. If you require an earlier check in, please call us on 0123 456 7890 and an earlier check in time can be arranged.”

Booking reminder messages – restaurants
“Your table at Chez Nous for 6 people will be ready at 8.00pm. To see our menu, click the link www.link.com. We can’t wait to serve you some of our amazing food tonight”

“We don’t want you to forget about your booking and end up eat boring food tonight, so we are just reminding you of your 6.15pm booking at Scotts Food tonight”

Renewal reminder messages – car/phone
“Hi Bob, your car insurance is up for renewal on the 12/09/2019. We will send you a new renewal quote 2 weeks before, but if you would like a quote now, log into your account here www.link.com and click the ‘Request New Quote’ button”

“Because your phone is up for renewal on the 31/08/2019 we thought we would give you our best price on your current contract and show you some amazing upgrades. Too see these click the link and log into your account www.link.com”

Booking reminder messages – events
“Are you ready for the biggest and best festival ever? With only 1 week to go make sure you have everything you need by reading our checklist here link www.link.com”

“Thank you for registering for our Online Marketing Event tomorrow. Please arrive at 9.30am with the event starting at 10.00am. We look forward to seeing you”

To make a booking reminder messages – garage
“Your MOT is due on the 15/08/2019. To book an MOT please call us on 0123 456 7890 or book online at www.link.com”

“Remember to check your tires before any long journey and check your oil once a month. From your local friendly garage, Leos Motors”

To make a booking reminder messages – medical/health
“Hi Becky, remember to take your medicine today at 11.00pm. If you want to speak to a doctor about it, call us on 0123 456 7890”

“Sarah your daily task is to drink 6 glasses of water and eat no more than 1,900 calories. It is important to drink lots of water as this will help with digestion. Jane – Sports Nutritionist at Health Works”

Why do people keep opting out of our marketing messages?

Since the dawn of time marketers have been asking this question . . . OK well maybe not since the dawn of time, but it is a question that has puzzled marketers for years.

The issue being that someone has actively signed up to your marketing campaigns, wanting to receive marketing messages from you, to only opt out again soon after. Why would they opt in, to only unsubscribe again? That’s like ordering a pizza and never picking it up, who would do such a thing?

This is a major issue that affects both email and SMS marketing, and unfortunately the day will never come where people don’t unsubscribe from marketing messages. You could be sending amazing and engaging messages, ensuring you offer value every time, and not harassing them with multiple messages in a short space of time, but you will still find people opting out.

One thing we can do is determine why people are opting out and try and minimise this as much as possible.

Why people opt out

Even though the stats in the above image are just for emails, the reasons are still closely related to SMS, which is why we have expanded on each and added one more that we know is a huge reason for the percentage of unsubscribes.

Too many messages
Unfortunately, this is still a far too common reason for people unsubscribing. Businesses get over excited when they see great results, and start to send customers messages all the time.

No longer interested
This is a common one, the user signed up with all good intent on reading your messages, but soon got bored and unsubscribed.

Don’t recognise brand
This area is more for email marketing than SMS marketing. Because the majority of emails get sent to spam, recipients may not have actually read your email for several months even years, so when they click in their spam folder and read one of your emails, it was such a long time ago that they signed up, they have completely forgotten your brand.

Signed up on an incentive
One huge reason to why people unsubscribe is because they only opted in was to receive an offer. They never really intending on reading any of your messages anyway.

What you can do to minimise opt outs

Even with those 4 overwhelming reasons why people opt out, there are still actions that marketers can take to try help bring the number of unsubscribes down.

Too many messages
When sending each marketing message, you should think about if this will benefit the customer, or are you just sending it for the sake of it. A good way to know how often you can contact people is to ask them, give them the option to select how often they want you to message them.

No longer interested
Consumers will lose interest very quickly if your content isn’t meaningful to them. Yes, blanket marketing messages are easier to set up and send, but to keep interest high you need to do targeted campaigns. Split your data into what each subscriber is interested in and send them more meaningful messages. Not only will this help your unsubscribe rate, but because the content is more targeted, the recipient will be more receptive to your message, which will help conversion rate.

Don’t recognise brand
Fortunately for SMS there is no spam box, which means this as well as an amazing 98% open rate, your message will be read. So, make sure you keep in constant contact with customers, and send them at least 1 message every 6-8 weeks. Any less and consumers will forget about you very quickly. And make sure you have your Sender ID set to your business name.

Signed up on an incentive
Yes, offering an incentive like 40% off or a free gift on sign up is a great way to get more subscribers, but ultimately the people who do subscribe because of this aren’t interested in receiving more marketing messages from you.

Instead of offering an incentive when they sign up, tell them the benefits they would get if they signed up. Like monthly exclusive offers, early access to tickets/events, exclusive competitions and more. You want to tell them that if they sign up and stay on the list, they will receive great content and amazing offers forever.

 

If you don’t already send SMS marketing messages to your customers, why not sign up and try our online SMS platform today. Is simple to use and perfect to send personalised marketing messages in bulk. To test the platform, we will give you some free credits and one of our team will be more than happy talk you through the platform and create a plan dedicated to you.

Why you need to send a promotional marketing message out for Father’s Day

Father’s Day is almost here, and consumers are rushing around trying to find the perfect gift. For retailers it has always been a popular day, however we tend to spend 3 times more on Mum’s than Dad’s on the retrospective days (Source: The Drum), but with UK consumers thought to have spent £799 million in 2018 on Father’s Day, it is still a day not to be missed for retailers across the UK.

A large majority of this spend has come in the form of online shopping, both from computers and mobile phones. In fact, in 2017 the 64% of the UK public said they were going to do most of their Christmas shopping online compared to just 36% in-store (Source: Abobatoo Life Ltd).

The reason behind the popularity of online shopping is largely down to our favourite little device, (or sometimes not so little) the mobile phone, with more people using a mobile phone now more than ever.

82% of UK consumers used a mobile phone in 2005 compared to a staggering 94% in 2017 (Source: Ofcom)

With access to the internet through our mobile phones and returning items bought online made easy, online shopping is now more widely used than ever before. If you want to get the most out of the huge Father’s Day spend, it is vital that send all your customers promotional messages.

If you aren’t convinced already, check out some more facts below.

If you want to make the most out of Father’s Day this year, send them an SMS message and watch the sales come rolling in. If you need any help or advice with your SMS campaigns, feel free to give us a call on 0117 205 0202 and one of our expert team can lend a hand.

How businesses can build their own mobile solution for less: Part 2

After finishing part 1 in this 2 part series, you should now have a list of different ways you can use SMS to communicate with customers, allow them to connect with you, collect feedback, and collect customer data. From this you should have something that looks like this.

With step 1 checked off, you are half way to building a mobile solution for less. The next step is to start thinking about how you are going to implement those areas.

Below is a kind of best practice walkthrough with details on when to send your customers a text message, where best to use a Keyword or Form2SMS to collect consumer information, some things to think about how quickly you need to get back to customers who message you, and more.

1. Communication with customers

First you need to work out how often you want to send your customers a text message. Sending marketing messages twice in the space of 3 days is too often, but 2 delivery notifications in this timeframe may not be enough. It is a balancing act between keeping customers engaged with your business without annoying them.

Marketing and sales messages
When to send – No more than once a week and no less than once every 2 months. The best time to send these kinds of messages is during a sale, over holidays, special occasions like Black Friday, and if you have the customers birthday, then a special offer on their birthday goes down a treat.

How to use – You can send a bulk marketing or sales message in your Message Box account, which can be personalised using custom fields. If you are sending to a large amount of people at once, you may want to think about spreading the send, this will ensure your phone lines aren’t jammed or your website doesn’t crash if everyone visits it at the same time.

Things to think about – When sending a text message to your customers about your sale, you need to be mindful that you don’t send them too many or too few. To help you with this, we have handy calculation that will give you the optimum number of messages you should send.

Number of text messages to send calculation

So, if your sale were to last 6 weeks, the calculation would be: (45 ÷ 10) ÷ 2 = 2.25 (2 sends)

Other examples:
14-day sale = 0.7 (1 send)*
60-day sale = 3 (3 sends)
120-day sale = 6 (6 sends)
*We advise that you send at least 2 SMS messages for a sale. One at the start and one a few days before it ends to remind customers.

Updates and info
When to send – Keeping customers up to date, whether you are providing them with information on an event or a confirmation message after they have made a purchase, but make sure you send these at the right time. Sending a purchase confirmation message the day after someone has made a purchase may confuse them into thinking the order has gone through twice. Below are our suggestions on when to send updates and information via SMS.

Types of SMS updates and information and when to send them

How to use – To send updates you can either do this manually in your Message Box account or by hooking into our API and send them out automatically.

Things to think about – If you plan on sending reminders and updates, make sure it is consistent. Sending a customer an update about their loan one week, then nothing ever again will frustrate the customer and leave them in the dark not knowing if the loan application is still in process.

Reminders
When to send – Depending on what the reminder is, these reminder messages are best sent out at different times. For example, sending customers an appointment reminder 2 weeks before their appointment would be pointless, but a payment reminder 2 weeks before gives the customer enough time to ensure they have the funds.

Types of SMS reminders and when to send

How to use – It is best to set up reminder messages to go out automatically, that way you aren’t relying on an employee to do this. You can do this by hooking into our API.

Things to think about – Reminder messages don’t have to be sent out prior to an event, you can remind customers to take an action, like when a customer adds an item to their online basket but doesn’t go through and buy it. You can send them various reminder messages telling them they still have an item in their basket and if they wish to view or buy it to click the link in the body of the text message.

2. Customers connecting with you

The two options to allow customers to get in contact with you are by using SMS chat or with a Keyword. You want to make it easy for customers, so these two options need to be in easy find and good locations otherwise there is no point using them if no one can find it.

SMS Chat
Where to use – You want to advertise the fact you have SMS chat in locations where you think it would be the most helpful, a website footer, contact page, or help/FAQ section.

How to use – By using a Virtual Mobile Number, all messages sent to this will be directed into your Message Box account or to a single email account if requested. You can then reply within your SMS account or using your email account. All messages sent via email will be converted to SMS and when the customer replies, these messages will be converted back to email.

Things to think about – SMS chat needs to have a quick response, we would suggest that you advertise it will take 5-10 minutes for an agent to get back to them.

Keyword
Where to use – You can place a Keyword in multiple locations, with the best being in the website footer, contact page, help/FAQ section, poster/flyer, in a text message, on the radio, or even in TV ads.

How to use – Ask customers to text your Keyword on its own, or with some information and these messages will go into your Message Box account. You can set up automatic replies for each Keyword or forward the message onto an email.

Things to think about – The reply time to a Keyword doesn’t have to be immediate, but this does depend on what the Keyword is designed to do. If it is used in a support area, then a quicker response will be needed to one used when requesting more information on a certain product or service.

3. Collect feedback

The two ways that you can use SMS in your mobile solution to collect valuable feedback is by sending them an SMS Survey or using a Keyword to allow consumers the option to leave feedback whenever they like.

SMS Survey
When to send – You want to send customers an SMS Survey after they have completed an action, whether that is making a purchase or attending an event. There are different times you want to send a survey depending on the customers action. Giving customers enough time to try a product may mean sending a survey a few weeks after the initial purchase, but if the customer has spoken to a support agent, an SMS Survey will work best if sent immediately after.

Types of customer interaction and when to send

How to use – You can create the survey with multiple questions and send to individual customers or in bulk within the ‘Surveys’ section of Message Box. Here you will also be able to view replies and download all answers.

Things to think about – Don’t make the survey too long, a few questions asking the important things you want to know about will be enough. Make sure you tell customers in the opening message how long it is, otherwise, they may not reply as they won’t know how long it will take.

Keyword
Where to use – It is best to use a Keyword to allow customers to leave feedback in areas where they have completed an action. This can be after submitting a form, in their accounts section, or even in a purchase confirmation email.

How to use – Ask customers to text your Keyword with their feedback immediately after this and all answers will go into your Message Box account. You can set up automatic replies to individual Keywords or forward it to an email.

Things to think about – Set up an auto response so customers know you have received their feedback. You may even want to send these people an SMS Survey as well, and ask some other questions around your business that they had not mentioned in their message.

4. Collect customer data

The more mobile numbers you can collect, the more sales you will get when you do send a mass SMS marketing message. Both the Form2SMS and Keyword should be used in as many locations as possible to maximise data collection.

Form2SMS
Where to use – Because it is a simple form, it can be used on any page where you want to collect mobile numbers. We would advise you to put it near the top of your most popular pages.

How to use – To create a Form2SMS form, log into your Message Box account and in the ‘Account Settings’ area you will find the tab labelled ‘Form2SMS’. Here you can create the form and add a message that will be sent once the user has submitted the form. Once created copy the pre-populated code onto your website.

Things to think about – You can make several forms and place them in different areas of your website, each with a unique automatic reply message.

Keyword
Where to use – Again a Keyword can be placed anywhere on your website, along with posters/flyers, or even in your app.

How to use – Purchase your desired Keyword then place it in various locations, each time explaining what information you want from customers and how you are going to use their information.

Things to think about – Don’t ask for too much information, the more you ask for, the fewer people will be fill in the form. Keep it simple, name and email address will be sufficient.

Whare to use Form2SMS and keyword

After reading part 1 and deciding which areas you are going to use mobile marketing in, and then reading this post and implementing SMS into your business, you should now have a fully functioning mobile solution that works for you and your customers.

If you want some advice on how your businesses could build your own mobile solution give us a call on 0117 205 0202 and one of our mobile solution team can guide you on how your businesses could use SMS so you can make your own mobile solution.

How businesses can build their own mobile solution for less: Part 1

For most businesses, investing thousands of pounds in a mobile solution that gives them everything they and their customers want is just not possible. But with the huge increase in the popularity and usage of mobile phones, it is almost becoming an integral part of any successful business to have a mobile solution, which for small businesses can be a real headache.

Thankfully having a mobile solution doesn’t have to break the bank and you can build your own mobile solution with all the tools and products that we provide for you here at Text Marketer. No need to spend thousands of pounds on a fancy solution, just use good old SMS.

What you need to do
A mobile solution needs to allow businesses to communicate with their customers, allow customers to easily connect with the business, quickly collect feedback and multiple ways to collect customers information.

To do this there are 4 key areas below that you will need to select at least one way of using SMS from each. Once this is done, you can start planning on how you are going to use your new mobile solution in part 2 (coming soon).

1. Communication with customers
With 75% of people wanting to have offers sent to them via SMS (Source: Digital Marketing Magazine) the perfect way to communicate with customers is through SMS. But offers aren’t the only thing that customers want to receive via SMS.

Marketing and sales messages – Yes probably the most effective way to communicate with your customers is to send them a marketing or sales message. Promoting your sale or new service in a simple SMS message can really boost sales.

Updates and info – Update customers by sending them a text message, whether it is an update about an event, items that are now back in stock, digital receipt, or even just providing them with information on closing times are just a few ways you can use SMS to update customers.

Reminders – SMS can be used as a reminding service, and because 98% of all messages are read you know your reminder message will be seen. You can remind customers of late payments, renewal dates, or their appointments.

2. Customers connecting with you
Not only do customers want to hear from you, they want to be able to connect with you in an easy method that’s fits around their busy days.

SMS chat – An SMS chat service is a great way to do this, you can simply allow customers to text you using a virtual mobile number and you can either reply using Email2SMS or through our online platform. From there you can have a full conversation through text messages, meaning the consumer can reply when it suits them best.

Keyword – A keyword can be used in multiple scenarios to allow customers to get in contact with you. You can use a keyword for competitions, allow customers to text it for out of stock updates, or a support service where a customer texts your keyword and a support agent can get back to them.

3. Collect feedback
The third step to a successful mobile solution is to be able to collect your customers feedback, a daunting task for many but an imperative one.

SMS Survey – The best way to collect feedback is with an SMS Survey, simply send an SMS Survey to customers after they have purchased, interacted with you, or at the end of the month and with a higher response rate than email, watch the feedback come rolling in.

Keyword – Sending a survey to customers is good, but you need to give them an option to leave feedback in their own time. By using a keyword and asking customers to text your keyword followed by their thoughts gives customers that easy option to leave feedback.

4. Collect customer data
The final part of any successful mobile solution is to collect your customers and potential customers information. This will then allow you to send them a message, surveys and communicate with them better.

Form2SMS – Using our Form2SMS feature you simply add the pre-made code to your website, which will generate a sign-up box where users can enter their details to receive SMS messages from you.

Keyword – Again a keyword can be used to collect mobile numbers, email addresses or any personal information you need. Ask customers to text your keyword followed by their email address or any other information you require, with it all being sent to your SMS account.

 

Once you have read up on everything and decided with areas you are going to use in your mobile solution, you can move onto part 2 (coming soon).

One year on from GDPR and how it has affected businesses

It felt like only yesterday that the GDPR apocalypse had hit and businesses were running around like headless chickens, scared that if they sent an email or SMS message they would be hit with a 20 million pound fine. We now know that isn’t the case and even just a few months after GDPR, businesses needn’t have worried so much and they just needed to “keep calm and carry on sending”.

In fact, now the fallout from GDPR has settled down, consumers actually think it is a good thing.

So, with all this fuss around GDPR, what has the actual impact been? Well in a nutshell, more pop ups on website asking you if they could store your data to improve the service they offer you.

Of course, that wasn’t the only thing, but it did feel like the stress was all for nothing. It seemed like for businesses who were keeping customer data safe and were not sending unsolicited messages, they were only required to make a few minor tweaks to their current processes to be in line with the new rules.

We have however identified 2 key areas that we believe have been the biggest areas for businesses in terms of both GDPR as a whole, and more specifically SMS marketing. We would like to note that the below information is not legal advice and if you require more information on GDPR please visit the ico website where you can read up more about GDPR.

Opted in data and legitimate interest

Being able to send customers marketing messages, promoting your products or services, and informing them of sales is pivotal for businesses to be able to sell. With GDPR this became an issue, both because businesses didn’t have opted in data and because the legitimate interest area was a bit confusing.

Opted in data
This was the biggest area that affected businesses, they did not have proof that their customers were opted in and happy to receive messages from them, which caused panic which saw a flourish of emails and text messages being sent out asking consumers to opt it. After these messages were sent out, because many decided to not opt in, businesses would have lost a large chunk of the data, which seemed bad, but in truth was actually good for them.

All this meant was that when a customer replied and opted in, they were truly engaged with that business and were very receptive to the messages they were receiving. For all those who didn’t opt in, they were probably never engaged with your brand in the first place and were ignoring your messages anyway.

Remember quality is better than quantity. So sending fewer messages to a smaller, more engaged group, will save you time and money in the long run, whilst giving you the same outcome.

Legitimate interest
For a lot of businesses, they thought the opt in rule was a bit harsh, many had long standing customers that they had no proof of an opt in form, businesses still need to be able to sell their products and services and this seemed very strict that they could no longer send these customers messages.

This is why with GDPR there was a ‘legitimate interest’ section. This allowed businesses to communicate with consumers who had not opted in, but believed they had a genuine reason to connect with them.

This area is still a grey area and is purely down to the business to decide if the consumer fits into their legitimate interests’ assessment (LIA). There are 3 areas to consider when working out if a consumer fits into your legitimate interest assessment.

Identify the legitimate interest and keep a record – You must first identify where the legitimate interest comes from and then keep a record of this. A good reason of legitimate interest would be if a new customer has purchased from you, the interest is that they may want to know about more of you products or services.

Show that the processing is necessary – By this we mean, is sending them an email or SMS message the only way of communicating with them, or is there another way to achieve the same result in a less intrusive way?

Balance it against the individual’s interests – You must balance your interests against the individuals and you should not send them a message that they would not reasonably expect to receive from you. Therefore, if someone hasn’t purchased or heard from you in 5 years, then they would probably not expect to receive a message from you.

We strongly suggest that you include an opt out on every marketing message you send, this way if the recipient doesn’t want to hear from you, they can easily opt out. This will also help if you ever receive a complaint, because every time you sent them a marketing message you included a free opt out, if they really were annoyed and wanted you to stop sending them messages, why didn’t they opt out?

For more information on this have a read of the legitimate interests section on the ico website.

Processing personal data

The second area, where all those cookie pop ups on websites have come from, was that businesses were now required to tell consumers what information they were storing on them, and if they are happy with them to do so.

For your business to keep information on an individual, you need to:

Ask for approval – You need to tell the consumer what information you are keeping on them and ask them if it is ok for you to keep that information.

Keep safe – Store the data in a secure place and not share it with anyone.

Correct data – Ensure that personal information is kept up to date.

Provide information – If the individual asks for the information you have on them, you must be able provide them with it.

Don’t keep information – Don’t keep information on consumers for longer than required.

Think about it this way, would you like a business to keep information on you, that you never gave them permission for, in an insecure location, and 10 years after you bought from them? Probably not.

You need to remember that individuals have the right; to be informed, of access, to rectification, to erasure, to restrict processing, to data portability, to object, in relation to automated decision making and profiling.

For more information on this have a read of the individual rights section on the ico website.

What can your business take from this?

To summarise, you should not worry about GDPR and just make sure you;
– Can prove an opt-in or have legitimate interest
– Inform and ask for data to be kept
– Keep that data safe
– Provide the information when asked

Then there is nothing to worry about.

 

We would advise that if you are still unsure about GDPR to read the ico website on their Guide to the General Data Protection Regulation.

10 fun SMS facts

At Text Marketer we talk a lot about SMS, we have blogs on how it works wonders for all different types of businesses, how to get the most out of SMS, along with loads of more blogs all around the subject of SMS and how it helps businesses grow.

We have had great response to these blogs, from businesses emailing us thanking us for helping them, but we also know that sometimes you just want to relax and have a bit of fun.

And that is exactly what we have done – below is a list of 10 fun SMS facts that we hope you enjoy.

1. The very first message sent was in the UK in 1992 and read “Merry Christmas”. The receiver didn’t even reply, well he couldn’t because his phone didn’t have any way of inputting text – talk about a great reason to not reply. (The Week)

2. Texting has now become so popular that a whopping 90% of adults aged between 26-35 would prefer to send text messages to friends than meet up and have a conversation. (Mobile Commons)

3. Want to know the number of text messages the average smartphone user between 18 and 24 sends and receives every month? 4,000 – that’s around 8 messages every hour when awake. (MarketingCharts)

4. Do you remember the old Nokia beep? Well that was Morse code for SMS. (Newlaunches)

5. The fastest text message ever typed was done in 18.19 seconds and read – “The razor-toothed piranhas of the genera Serrasalmus and Pygocentrus are the most ferocious freshwater fish in the world. In reality they seldom attack a human.” – how fast can you text that? (Guinness World Records)

6. Text messaging is the most popular form of communication. (Independent)

7. The peak time for sending a text message is between 10.30pm and 11.00pm. (Strange But True)

8. 8.3 trillion text messages are sent worldwide every year, that’s around 23 billion a day, and about 270,000 messages every second. (OneReach)

9. Back in 2002 the first contest to allow voting by text was the Eurovision song contest. (Express)

10. Women spend more time on their mobile phones and send more text messages than men. (Cellular News)

We hope you enjoyed those 10 SMS facts and if you want to know more about SMS please read our post on the history of SMS, it includes a fact about texting cows.

Smashing Spring Sale – 10% free credits

With the sun shining down like it is the Summer already, us Brits are taking to the street to go shopping, booking trips away, and generally jumping on the opportunity to do any activity in the sunshine.

With all this extra sun and the extra days off we get in Spring, we have seen an increase in messages being sent through our system. So, with this increase in activity, we thought we would help you out and give you some free credits to allow you to send even more messages to encourage your customers to visit you this Spring time.

That’s right, the Text Marketer Smashing Spring Sale is here, where you can get free credits for just being a customer of ours. Purchase 1,000 or more credits and we will give you an extra 10% completely free.

Any purchase over 1,000 credits will receive an extra 10% SMS credits for free!

To claim, forward your invoice to support@textmarketer.co.uk with the subject line Spring Sale – the offer CANNOT be used with any existing offer or discount, but can be used multiple times during the period.

So why not top up and get some free credits on us and have a smashing spring yourselves.

An in-depth look into Text Marketer’s tracked URL feature

Being able to see how many clicks your URL received can really help drive a successful campaign. But being able to see exactly which of your customers clicked it, when, and how many times, is even better. Which is why within our analytics section, you can see exactly that.

Which means you can:
– Test different campaigns and see which link got the best click through
– Send another message to those that didn’t click
– Send another message to those that did click but didn’t take your desired action

For a basic understanding of how our tracked URL feature works, check out our blog here.

This post is a more in-depth look into the feature, explaining in detail what each section is, how it works, and how you can see who clicked your URL.

1. Tracked URLs – The first drop down box shows the full URL, before being shortened, that was included in an SMS message that was sent. When selecting different URLs, all other information on this page will be updated to show data for that specific URL. The sections that will update are; Sent Messages, Tracked URL Details, Message Details, Short URL Clicks, Clicks per device type, and the report at the bottom of the page.

2. Sent Messages – Here is where you can see the different SMS campaigns that have used the URL that was selected in ‘Tracked URLs’ dropdown box. When selecting different SMS campaigns, both the ‘Message Details’ and ‘Message’ will update to show that specific campaign. All ‘Tracked URL Details’, ‘Short URL Clicks’, ‘Clicks per device type’, and the report at the bottom of the page, will still show the overall clicks from the URL selected in the ‘Tracked URLs’ dropdown box and not details for an individual campaign.

3. Tracked URL Details – This shows the total number of SMS campaigns (Sent Messages) that the URL selected in ‘Tracked URLs’ has been used in, along with the total number of clicks. This is displayed as total clicks and not unique clicks, so if 1 customer has clicked the link 5 times, it will show as 5.

4. Message Details – The ‘Message Details’ section shows information about a particular SMS campaign, with date, sender ID, which contact groups the message was sent to, how many customers it was sent to, and the number of credits required for that SMS campaign. This will update when selecting a different option from the ‘Sent Messages’ drop down.

5. Message – This section shows the message that was sent. This will update when selecting a different option from the ‘Sent Messages’ drop down.

6. Short URL clicks – Under the ‘Short URLs clicks’ header, is a graph that displays the total number of clicks per day, week, or month. This can be changed using the ‘Timeframe’ dropdown. This will update when selecting a different option from the ‘Tracked URLs’ dropdown.

7. Clicks per device type – The pie chart shows the percentage breakdown of devices that your URL has been clicked on. This will update when selecting a different option from the ‘Tracked URLs’ drop down.

8. Report – At the bottom of the page you will be able to see a list of your customers’ mobile numbers, the device they are on, number of clicks, and the date and time of the first click. You can download this by clicking the ‘Download Report’ button. This is a total of all clicks on any given URL. This will update when selecting a different option from the ‘Tracked URLs’ drop down.

*You can then follow our simple instructions to see details about which of your customers have clicked your URL – how to see who clicked your tracked URL link

Text Marketer Tracked URL analytics

If after reading this, you are still unsure about how it works, please give us a call and one of our support team can take you through it.

Why spring is the perfect time to connect with your customers

With the cold months of Winter behind us and the warm Summer air on the horizon, Spring really is the best time of the year.

During Spring we have the longest day of the year, the UK has 4 bank holidays, Easter weekend, school holidays, Mother’s and Father’s day, plus the clocks go forward. All this means consumers have more time on their hands to see friends, go on trips, but probably the most popular activity for us Brits . . . . Shopping.

We seem to take every possible opportunity to do a bit of shopping, so when there is more time in the day, the sun beaming down and a chance to go on a weekday, we will undoubtedly grab our wallets and purses and go on a shopping spree.

To be able to capitalise on all the extra hours in the day and extra days off over Spring, we would recommend you take 3 very simple actions, which together will give you a huge boost over the Spring season.

3 simple activities to boost your Spring sales
Spring Sale – The best way to attract customers to your store is with a sale. Make sure your sale isn’t a really small percentage off, and run it for a few weeks. Making your sale last months will lose its effectiveness, you want to create a sense of urgency and not allow customers to think they have all the time in the world to take advantage of it.

SMS Campaigns – Send out multiple SMS campaigns to promote your sale. Your first SMS campaign should go out at the very start, with at least one more a few days before it ends, reminding customers it is the last chance for them to save money.

Competition – Everyone loves a competition and running one will increase engagement, which in turn means more people will see your sale and buy from you. You may even want to think about running an ‘in-store competition’, which would require people to come into your store to enter.

Use SMS Web Pages to improve your SMS campaigns
To help you with your sale and competition, why not try our completely free feature, SMS Web Pages. You can create a bespoke landing page and include images, extra information about your offer, and a call to action button.

By creating an SMS Web Page, you won’t have to include all the information of your sale or competition within the body of your text message, meaning you can keep it to 1 message length, saving you money.

Example text messages for your spring SMS campaigns
To help get up to speed as quickly as possible, we have created a few example text messages that you can use.

“Our Super Spring Sale is now on! Don’t miss our Spring Sale and get 30% off everything. Sale ends 21st June. For more info visit our website www.link.com”

“Put a spring in your step with our Spring Sale & Competition. Save 30% off all items and at the same time enter our competition where you can win 1 of 3 £100 vouchers. For more info click here www.link.com”

“Competition time! Want to be in with a chance of winning 1 of 3 £100 vouchers? Simply come into our store and play a little game. Store location here www.link.com”

 

If you would like any help setting up your SMS campaigns ready for your sale, call us or drop us an email and one of our expert team can help you.

Text Marketer is part of Commify Group

We just thought you might like to know that there have been some administrative changes here at Text Marketer, but don’t worry, we are still here offering an amazing SMS service at a low cost.

Text Marketer is part of a group of business messaging service providers called Commify. To simplify our legal structure, we renamed TextMarketer Limited to Commify UK Limited on 31st January 2019 with Companies House. At that point, Text Marketer Limited became a trading name of Commify UK Limited.

This has had no impact on the services our customers receive or the team who deliver those services; it simply means that invoices are now from Commify UK Limited trading as Text Marketer. All existing contracts remain valid – it is very much business as usual.

Public notices have been issued which list the various non-trading companies being wound up – and some customers have seen these notices and sought clarification that Text Marketer itself is not being wound up. It is not.

Text Marketer is alive and well 

Commify as a group works with over 45,000 companies across Europe and APAC; we employ close to 250 of the brightest minds in the industry, and have offices in the UK, Spain, France, Italy, Germany and Australia.

Our mission is to make business communication brilliant, and we are proud to be the number one provider of business messaging solutions in many parts of Europe.

You can find out more about Commify here; if you have any questions about this administrative change, please do get in touch.

Again we just thought you would like to know, we are still here, still low cost, and most importantly, still bright orange.

How and why businesses can use SMS to communicate better with their employees

We aren’t going to start this post by going into the whole, “SMS has a 98% open rate whilst email only has a 22% open rate” and “email inboxes are filled with spam messages” spiel, just to show you that sending a text message is MUCH better than sending an email . . . Oops, we did, oh well.

What we really wanted to start with was a fantastic quote from Richard Branson . . .

This sounds simple enough but can be hard to achieve. To improve employee satisfaction, businesses will look at improving the office, making it homelier and less like an office, or improve benefits they offer like extra day offs, bigger bonuses, flexible hours.

All these are great and will help to improve employee satisfaction, which will then feed down to your customers, but a big area that businesses are missing is communication.

You can have all the benefits and freebies in the world, but if your communication is poor, then your staff won’t be happy.

Bad communication can range from; too many emails, too few emails, emails at the wrong time, emails about unimportant things, not emailing about important things, employees not knowing what is going on, the list goes on. But one thing it has in common is emails.

A study found that managers who were spending around 100 hours per year on unimportant emails, didn’t want their email access limited. They did however, want policies put in place that would reduce the volume of emails sent to their inbox. (Source: Grossman Group)

We all get thousands of emails and very quickly we start to scan them and not fully take the information in. But if some of those emails were sent via SMS instead, employees would not only receive fewer emails but would take these emails onboard more as they know that these fewer emails are important and not just mass updates.

But how do you go about deciding which emails would work better as a text message? Below we have outlined 3 different scenarios where SMS would work better than emails, and why you should move to internal SMS communication.

How to use SMS for internal communication
SMS can be used instead of emails in most areas, we would, however, advice that you to start by looking at 3 different areas to implement SMS; alerts, reminders, and questions. These 3 options are easy to change to SMS and you can then see what impact that has on employees.

Alerts – Major updates and alerts should be sent out via text message and not email due to the importance of them. Because these alerts are important, you want to know that your staff have received and read the message almost instantly. These alerts can range from office issues, road closures, media events, and a change of meeting time to name just a few.

Reminders – A great way to use SMS internally is for reminders. This can be set up automatically, so 10 minutes before a meeting or event, those attending receive an SMS message reminding them. Staff away days, work parties, and end of month expenses are just a few more ways that reminders can be sent out via SMS instead of email.

Employee Feedback – Whether it is an end of year survey to find out the overall satisfaction of your employees, or a single question to ask whether you should implement a new policy. Using SMS Surveys to collect quality feedback from your employees is the quickest and easiest method.

Why should businesses use SMS for internal communication?
To put it simply, employees don’t always have access to their emails, meaning they may not see your message for an hour, day, or even week. Unlike with our mobile phones that rarely leave the palm of our hand and we check multiple times every day.

On average people check their phones 150 times per day and spend 177 minutes using them (Source: Device Atlas)

Reasons why your employees may not have access to their emails:
– Working remotely/off-site
– Out on the road and no access to the internet
– Lunch break
– On the shop floor

You may even to get a message out to everyone in the morning, say if there has been a crash and to get to work safely they would need to take a different route. Sending an email about this would mean the majority won’t see it as they are unlikely to check their emails in the morning.

All this means that if you need to get an important message out to everyone, the quickest and most effective way is with a text message. With 90% of all text messages being read within 3 minutes, you know that using SMS instead of email your message will be read almost instantly.

 

Using SMS ensures you reach all employees at the same time, and in a much faster manner than relying on emails alone. At Text Marketer, we take our own advice on board and use SMS for internal communication, which has been received extremely well of course!