SMS Marketing in Tough Times

Almost all companies are looking for ways on how to increase or maintain their sales performance this year. The current Philippine economic situation is worsen by external factors rather than internal or local factors. Just to prove that indeed globalization is at work.

Some of the companies I know has given up or at lessen their TV ads because of cost concers, online ads because of its unreliable statistics and unproven effectivity. They are turning to more focussed mediums like magazines, events and SMS or texting.

SMS marketing is proving just the tool for shrewd businesses look for innovative new media strategies to keep themselves ahead of the game during the economic downturn.

SME’s feeling the pinch are searching for ways to cut marketing spend without compromising results. It’s now more important than ever for businesses to improve efficiency, reduce waste and produce targeted responsive marketing campaigns and digital mediums such as mobile are proving the ideal solution ensuring much needed return on investment.

Here are 6 key marketing objectives where Mobile Marketing can shine for any business.

1) Direct Response Advertising
Targeted bulk text campaigns to a qualified database coupled with a strong call to action can prove powerful in reaching impulse buyers at just the right time to entice a purchase. The key to the direct response lies with the fact people carry their phones with them wherever they go and therefore there is no more powerful way to reach people than by their phone and with 75% of people reading their texts immediately the direct impact can be huge.

Statistics provided by the Mobile Data Association (MDA) found that response rates for mobile are 4 times higher than other direct marketing mediums such as DM and Email and at only a few pence a text and no production costs a simple text message equates to a fraction of the cost.

2) Customer Retention Marketing
Keeping customers will not only save businesses money but will make them money. According to a report by The Logic Group, loyal long standing customers account for over 50% of a company’s annual sales, they are also higher value customers happy to pay premium rates of around 30% to 50% more per transaction.

For this reason a CRM program is crucial and regular communication via new media techniques such as email and mobile is a key player in helping maintain communication. However, of course no one wants to be bombarded with endless SMS marketing campaigns but a friendly personalized offer or promotion at just the right time will do no harm to your relationship and could provide just the push you need to increase sales.

3) Viral Marketing
With people looking for bargains, text is proving more powerful than ever. Texts are the ideal viral marketing tool capable of reaching much further than initial recipients alone. Good offers and promotions are often shared amongst friends eager to spread the word of a good bargain.

If businesses send out tempting offers and promotions then it’s only human nature that people will want to share them and it couldn’t be any easier or convenient to pass on a good tip to a friend than via a quick text. Also, people genuinely like receiving texts from friends, with a whopping 94% of texts being opened and read which offers great opportunities for marketers.

4) Integrated Marketing
Mobile works best when integrated with other larger campaigns and therefore it’s important for it to be integrated into all marketing communications material such as newsletters, websites, e-marketing, POS, Outdoor, TV and radio in the same way a telephone or email address would be included.

5) Lead Generation
The tightening economy is sure to put lead generation tactics in the spotlight as businesses search for ways to generate new leads. Tactics such as Mobile Marketing enable businesses to build their own opt-in database of contacts at no extra cost, simply by publishing it on all marketing communications material. This is a much more practical way of operating than buying in cold call data from a broker.

6) Measuring and Tracking Results
During the tough economy it is more important than ever for businesses to implement marketing strategies that are trackable and measureable. There is no point investing in advertising if it’s not properly monitored.

It’s important to track where sales are coming from then analyze the statistics and drop what’s not working in favour of what does work. It’s also easy to monitor other aspects of text campaigns, such as how many texts are opened, bounce backs, unsubscribes and click through rates, all of which also need to be accounted for when monitoring campaign success.

In conclusion as marketing budgets are streamlined, marketers need to push their case for value for money from advertising and marketing spend and moving more towards more measurable, ROI-focused media such as Internet and mobile marketing. Mobile tactics such as short codes and text messaging should be integrated into larger marketing campaigns as an aid to increase potential in terms of sales, lead generation and campaign measurability.

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