Implementing SMS into your marketing efforts greatly improves your results.
After finding the right business-grade texting app for your business your next step is collecting consent from people in order to send them text messages.
Email Consent vs. SMS Consent
While Email and SMS are both tools for communicating with your audience, they have several differences including how spam complaints are handled. If someone files a spam complaint against you for unwanted text messages you could potentially be fined by your phone carrier, but it’s more likely that the messages will fail to deliver, and wireless carriers will block all messages from your business on their network.
If someone has given you consent to email them that doesn’t mean you also have consent to send text messages to them. You need to gather separate consent before you begin texting your audience.
With that said, gathering consent is a similar process as for email and you can use similar techniques to encourage your audience to opt-in for SMS text messages from you.
Creating Your SMS Marketing List Consent Plan
It takes time to grow a decent SMS marketing list, but you can begin sending text messages and experiencing greater results with even a small number of contacts while growing your list. To start, you need a plan involving what incentives you’re willing to give in exchange for consent and then how you’ll promote your incentive.
Choosing Your Incentive
Choose something your customers find valuable enough to exchange their SMS opt-in for your incentive. Depending on your industry and what’s valuable to your customers this can be:
Offering a discount on your products or services in exchange for their opt-in consent. A very effective option for many industries, but not for everyone. Many professional services, especially B2B services, will have better results using other types of incentives.
Free resource downloads
A great choice for any business providing expertise as their main form of services such as accounting firms, home services companies, tech companies, influencers, and so many others. A free resource can be anything from a content calendar from a marketing agency to a whitepaper on SaaS from a tech company. It’s any insider intelligence that your audience finds valuable. Other ideas include printables, how-to guides, the first chapter of a new book, whitepapers, templates, downloadable art, and so many more.
If discount codes and free resource downloads aren’t a fit for your industry don’t worry – there are dozens of incentive ideas. A little creativity goes a long way in finding the right incentive. One example is offering a virtual coupon for a free cup of coffee from Starbucks or a local coffee shop in your area.
The important idea is choosing an incentive that will produce SMS opt-in results.
Choosing Your Automation Keyword and Tag
Beetexting SMS Business Text Messaging has several great features making your goals easier to achieve. Two of the features you’ll use for growing your SMS marketing list include:
SMS keyword automation
This feature allows people to text you a specific keyword and receive an instant, automated text message response. Within the Beetexting app choose a specific keyword that when texted to your number triggers an automatic reply and adds a tag to their profile (we talk about tags next).
Here’s an example of what this looks like to a customer:
- After seeing an incentive for a 10% discount code at his favorite retail store for joining their SMS texting list, Milo texts “JOIN” to 888-695-6363.
- Milo receives an instant text reply sharing the discount code and welcoming him to the list.
- From now on Milo will receive valuable information about new product releases and more from one of his favorite stores.
SMS tag automation
When someone texts the designated keyword and joins your list a tag is automatically added to their profile.
A tag is a customized label added to contact profiles to keep their interests, list origin, status, etc. updated allowing you to keep their information organized and send relevant content according to who they are and their interests.
On the backend of our example with Milo: you’ve set up automations for keywords and tags. Once Milo texted the word “JOIN” to your number he automatically received a text reply with his incentive AND the system automatically added the tag “JOIN” to his contact profile.
Promoting Your Incentive
Once you’ve chosen the incentive you’ll use then it’s time to begin building your list by promoting your incentive. Determine how you will share your incentive with your audience.
Although there are dozens of ways, here are some of the most popular:
Add to your existing marketing emails
Do you send emails consistently to your email subscribers? If so, this is the best place to begin! Add your incentive offering to your existing communication to gain new SMS opt-ins from people who already enjoy hearing from you. Example: add a banner at the top, middle, or bottom of your email saying “Receive all the latest news right to your phone through SMS text! Text JOIN to 888-695-6363 now for a 10% discount on one item in our shop.”
Send an announcement email to your existing email list
Promote your new form of marketing with a promotional email. Use this email to announce that people can receive information and communicate with you through text. Include all the ways they’ll love receiving texts from you. Bonus – determine a couple of valuable things they’ll only get through text and no other channel.
Share your incentive through social media channels attracting your followers to join your list. Be creative in sharing this information in the most effective way depending on the social media channel. This looks different on LinkedIn than it looks on TikTok.
Use a combination of banners, pop-ups, and exit pop-ups letting your website visitors know about your SMS marketing list and what they receive for joining. Optin Monster is an easy-to-use service for adding banners and pop-ups to your website.
Other ways you can add this to your website include contact forms (a check box opting into SMS communication), cart checkout, the bottom or footer of blog posts, etc.
Now You’re Ready
You’ve chosen your incentive, keyword, tag, and how you’ll promote the incentive to people. You’ll grow your SMS marketing list in no time and start seeing the amazing results your business can have through SMS text messaging.