Social media marketing is one of the most important and current marketing techniques small businesses and entrepreneurs can employ. Just when small-business owners become accustomed to one type of social media marketing it seems another one crops up.
Although text marketing isn’t brand new, it is an area of social media marketing many have not ventured into. This convenient form of reaching potential customers can help even the busiest entrepreneurs expand and grow their businesses.
Similar to other forms of social media marketing, you must know how to effectively use text marketing and which rules of etiquette to abide by.
- The History. The first text message was sent in 1992 and contained two words: Merry Christmas. By 1993, the first consumer mobile phone providing text messaging options was made available. Ten years later, five- and six-digit text codes were created, paving the way toward text marketing by providing consumers a quick and simple way to respond to the advertisements created by businesses.
- Send Selectively. Some so-called marketing firms send out massive amounts of text messages on behalf of companies. The problem with these firms is that their techniques are spam-like, and they frequently cull cellphone numbers illegally. It’s better to work with a text marketing option that helps you collect cellphone numbers legitimately, sends your texts to people in the area as well as to consumers who’ve signed up to receive them.
- Build Interest. A selective texting process allows you to tap into the interests of customers who are receiving your texts and responding with a five-or six-digit code. Create interest and anticipation by including coupon or discount codes in your text messages. Make these codes exclusive for those signed up to receive text messages as an added incentive.
- Be Consistent without Over-Doing It. Sporadically sent text messages will cause you to quickly lose the interest of consumers, but so will the habit of inundating your customer base with texts that don’t offer value. Be consistent by sending texts two to five times per week, and always offer something of interest or value.
- Text Marketing Etiquette. When text messaging was first made available, users were limited to 160 characters. Nowadays, most phones allow longer text messages or unlimited text messaging lengths. Do your customers a favor; stay as close to the original 160 characters as possible. Likewise, save the text language for family and friends, and stick with more verbiage. Language such as “c u l8tr” or “bogo” can cause you to lose credibility with consumers.
Text marketing has helped many small and large businesses expand their customer bases by reaching consumers they wouldn’t have reached with traditional marketing methods. While text marketing should never stand alone, it can serve as an effective part of your all-over marketing plan.
Start slow, paying attention to what works and doesn’t work. Enlist the help of a professional who can help shorten your learning curve and create a text marketing plan that immediately gets to work for you. Text marketing can serve as a powerful tool; use it wisely and watch your business grow.
About the Guest Author: Mary Ylisela writes for Touchpoint Digital. A specialist internet marketing company, Touchpoint Digital has the expertise to support all of your digital marketing and communications goals however large or small your business.
Text Message Photo via Shutterstock