Elevate Your Mobile Game: Drive Conversions with SMS Marketing and Push Notifications [VIDEO]

By Melissa |  Aug 4, 2023 (5 min read)

Marketing | Strategy

In today’s digital landscape, mobile marketing plays a crucial role in helping businesses reach and engage their customers. With users spending more time on their mobile devices, companies must adapt and optimize their marketing strategies to meet customers where they are. Two powerful tools for enhancing mobile marketing efforts are SMS marketing and push notifications. This article will provide an overview of these tools, best practices for implementing them, and examples of how businesses can use them to boost engagement and drive revenue.

SMS Marketing: Definition and Benefits

SMS (Short Message Service) marketing involves sending promotional messages to customers through text messages. Some benefits of SMS marketing include high open and conversion rates, immediate communication, and personalization. Text messages have a 98% open rate, meaning customers are more likely to read and act upon them compared to other marketing channels.

Best Practices

  • Acquiring User Consent: User consent is a critical element of SMS marketing. It refers to the practice of obtaining explicit permission from customers before sending them marketing messages via SMS. This step is not only respectful, it is also a legal requirement under laws such as the TCPA (Telephone Consumer Protection Act) in the U.S. It ensures you’re communicating with individuals who are genuinely interested in your products or services, increasing the likelihood of engagement and conversion. It also protects your brand’s reputation by preventing unwanted messages that may be perceived as spam.
  • Timing and Frequency: The timing and frequency of your SMS marketing messages can significantly impact their effectiveness. The goal is to interact with customers when they’re most likely to be receptive. This could be during certain hours of the day or specific days of the week, depending on the nature of your business and the preferences of your audience. Over-sending messages can lead to ‘message fatigue’, causing customers to lose interest or opt out of receiving further communications. Conversely, infrequent messages may cause customers to forget about your brand. Striking a balance is key, and this can be achieved through testing and analyzing response rates.
  • Crafting Effective Messages: Be sure your message has a clear focus—whether it’s promoting a product, sharing a discount code, or announcing an event. Additionally, include a clear call-to-action (CTA) that encourages recipients to respond or take a specific action, such as clicking on a link or replying with a specific code. Personalization can also enhance the effectiveness of your SMS marketing by making the recipient feel recognized and valued.

Push Notifications: Definition and Benefits

Push notifications are real-time alerts sent to users’ mobile devices, typically from a mobile app. They offer real-time communication, rich media capabilities, and can improve user retention and re-engagement. Push notifications allow businesses to reach customers with timely and relevant messages, even if the app is not currently in use.

Best Practices

  • Segmentation and Personalization: Categorize users based on attributes like behavior or preferences and tailor notification content accordingly. This ensures you target the right audience while enhancing relevancy, making notifications more engaging and effective.
  • Timing and Frequency: Similar to SMS marketing, aim to send notifications at times when users are most likely to be receptive, which will often depend on their time zone and typical usage patterns. Too many notifications can lead to users becoming annoyed and potentially disabling notifications or uninstalling the app, while too few might mean they forget about your app or miss important updates. As with many things in marketing, finding the right balance is key.
  • Designing Engaging Notifications: Notifications should be concise, as users typically only glance at them for a few seconds.  Use eye-catching visuals, clear text, and persuasive CTAs to encourage users to take action.

Case Study

We want to share how a popular tanning salon chain in the U.S. reached a 57% conversion rate through an SMS marketing campaign. 

The Seattle Sun Tan leveraged SMS marketing to boost sales and customer engagement. Their SMS marketing campaign was simple yet highly effective, and was designed to attract new customers, increase engagement, and boost revenue by focusing on the following key elements:

Strong initial incentive: Offering a free tan as the primary incentive encouraged people to sign up for the SMS marketing list. This attractive offer provided an excellent opportunity for potential customers to try the service without any financial commitment, which ultimately led to more sign-ups.

Clear call-to-action: The call-to-action (CTA) was simple and straightforward. Customers were asked to text a specific keyword to a short code to receive their free tan coupon. This made it easy for people to opt in, removing any obstacles to participate.

Targeted messaging: The SMS messages sent to subscribers were tailored to suit their interests and preferences. This ensured that the offers and promotions received were relevant and appealing, which increased the likelihood of engagement and conversion.

Consistent communication: Seattle Sun Tan maintained regular communication with their SMS subscribers, sending special offers, updates, and promotions at a frequency that kept customers engaged without overwhelming them.

Measuring campaign success: By tracking the redemption rates, conversion rates, and overall growth of their SMS subscriber base, Seattle Sun Tan was able to gauge the effectiveness of their campaign and make necessary adjustments to optimize its performance.

Integrating SMS with other marketing channels: The company complemented their SMS marketing efforts with other channels such as email, social media, and in-store promotions to create a cohesive and comprehensive marketing strategy.

The results were impressive!   Within the first month of the campaign, Seattle Sun Tan acquired 4,750 new SMS subscribers, and reported an astounding 98% redemption rate for the free tan offer.  They also reported a 57% conversion rate for additional purchases made when redeeming the coupon.  This successful SMS campaign not only increased revenue but also helped Seattle Sun Tan expand their customer base and enhance their overall marketing strategy.

Final Thoughts

To maximize the effectiveness of SMS marketing and push notifications, coordinate these channels with other marketing efforts, such as email marketing, social media marketing, and other mobile marketing tactics like in-app messaging and mobile advertising.  And of course, it’s essential to track the performance of your SMS and push notification campaigns by identifying key performance indicators (KPIs), analyzing results, and optimizing strategies based on data-driven insights.  

By understanding the best practices and integrating them into a comprehensive marketing plan, businesses can drive customer engagement, increase sales, and achieve long-term success in our mobile-first world.

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