July 29, 2011
Text message marketing: the next frontier
With an average response rate a staggering 20%, this new technology offers tremendous ROI
By: Wayne Croswell
You may already be involved in mobile or text message marketing, but I doubt it. If you are, congratulations, you are ahead of the curve! More likely you haven’t heard of this type of marketing yet. It doesn’t matter where you are on the spectrum. This article will help you learn what this new marketing phenomenon is, how to take advantage of it, and what positive impact it can have on your business.
This may be a new concept for you, but mobile or text message marketing (TMM) has been around for nearly five years. However, it’s still at the pioneer stage. Like most emerging technologies, it will grow in popularity and use very quickly. Now is the time to hitch your wagon to this star and get a jump on the competition.
What is TMM? I am certain you have heard about, and probably use, text messaging on your cell phone. You probably know some teenagers who live and die by text messaging 24/7 and send and receive hundreds of texts per day. Well, TMM takes advantage of that text message technology to put you instantly in touch with your customers to promote products, provide information and announce specials and promotional events.
In 2010, 1.6 billion mobile devices were sold. Interestingly, only 20% of them were smart phones. What exactly is a smart phone? Smart phones have many features that cell phones do not. Think of them as devices that, unlike a cell phone, can not only read e-mails, they can surf the Internet. Smart phones can receive video and audio messages. Yet both smart and “not-so-smart” phones can send and receive plain old text messages.
Several of the marketing predecessors to TMM are still being used today. While they have their place, their ROI is incredibly low and they can become very costly marketing tactics. Some of TMM’s ancestors are radio and TV advertising, print ads in newspapers, Yellow Page listings, mailers or flyers sent via snail-mail and the infamous “fax blast” campaigns. Today, more modern concepts in social media marketing include the likes of Web sites, Facebook pages, Twitter feeds, Groupons, Yelp listings and the like. These methods put your marketing efforts online and give your customers and prospects direct access to your promotions and campaigns. Many dealers have even ventured into e-mail marketing.
But beware; entire businesses have been created to combat these marketing campaigns. Today, companies develop SPAM filters or blockers to prevent the over-abundance of SPAM e-mails being sent every day. And, guess who filters all of that junk snail-mail? You do. Statistics indicate most of the marketing snail-mail ends up in the “round file” before ever being opened. It’s time to think smarter, try new things and stay ahead of the curve. Text message marketing can help you do just that.
Did you know experts say that only 10% of direct mail advertising is even read? And, only 19% of e-mail marketing pieces are opened. But, check this out, 95% of all text messages are read. And, even more exciting, 90% of all text messages are read within three minutes of receipt. Advertising pundits state that a successful response rate for traditional marketing activities is typically 1% or 2%. That’s it, and as marketers we have come to accept that. But, what do you think the average response rate is to TMM? It’s a staggering 20%.
Let’s think about those statistics: 95% of all text messages are read and 90% are read within three minutes of receiving them. The average response rate to text message marketing is an impressive 15% to 25%. Imagine the ROI you will see on your marketing investment when you are getting a 15% to 25% close rate on your promotional materials. With close rates that high, why wouldn’t you try it?
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