6 min.

Thanks to the fundamental driving force of promotional and transactional SMS messages, 4.2 billion text messages were sent in 2018. Let’s take a look at the business objectives beneficially impacted by SMS Marketing.

Do you remember all the times we talked about the long goodbye of SMS messages? First, the messaging apps, then especially WhatsApp, were supposed to get rid of them. None of this happened. Rather, a new season of SMS growth opened up.

The research data conducted by the Mobile B2C Strategy Observatory of the Polytechnic University of Milan’s School of Management, together with Doxa, tell us that 4.2 billion SMS messages were sent throughout Italy in 2016. The result is a 6% increase from 2017.

A Skebby study also confirms this trend. It states that SMS use for promotional and transactional purposes is increasing.

How companies view SMS

If large companies have already grasped the potential of SMS marketing, then small and medium-sized enterprises now also look to this channel as an important launch pad to promote activities and services for expanding their business.

But what are SMS messages used for? Text messages are used for informing customers about ongoing promotions, closing periods, schedule changes, and more. We recently discovered that SMS messages for transactional purposes are also highly valued by professionals such as lawyers, accountants, and doctors, who use them mainly to confirm, move, or remind clients of appointments. Even non-profit organizations appreciate these types of SMS messages.

How people view SMS messages

The Skebby research shows that 79% of people appreciate notifications and reminders. In fact, this is the preferred channel for receiving reminders and other types of alerts (32.2%), followed by e-mails, and then WhatsApp. Only 0.96% of interviewees appreciate the old-fashioned phone call.

On the other hand, when it comes to age, among 25-34 year olds, an outstanding 46.8%, prefer SMS messages for reminders and notifications.

SMS uses

Promoting collections and products

This involves strictly commercial and promotional sendings. SMS is the most direct channel for advertising the arrival of a new product or a collection, especially to loyal customers with the highest involvement.

Moreover, nothing spreads flash or limited-time deals better than an SMS: coupons and so-called flash sales require delivery speed and immediate opening. Understanding how SMS textuality is more effective than any other channel in guiding customers to the online or nearest store is easy.

Managing transactional communications

As we have seen, during the purchase and post-sale phase no other channel is more appreciated among customers than the SMS channel in receiving:

  • Order confirmations;
  • Purchase codes;
  • Access codes (user and login);
  • Receipts;
  • Service information, such as item shipping;
  • Appointment confirmations, changes, or cancellations;
  • Appointment reminders.

When it comes to appointments, SMS provides the best reminder for confirming meetings, avoiding unforeseen circumstances, and making the customers feel that we are always on their side.

Moreover, for event organizers (tourism, transport, and many others), SMS messages offer the most agile and immediate ways to manage last-minute emergencies and program changes (i.e. notification of a flight boarding gate change).

Not only that – transactional SMS messages leave companies some wiggle room for restarting a dialogue and accompanying the customer to a new order. For example, a particularly interesting e-commerce situation involves taking advantage of a simple notification, like a springboard to a new offer.

Managing communication with citizens

Public institutions and service providers for citizens take a fundamental advantage of SMS use. When it comes to the world of Utilities, here’s a perfect example: a few months ago, we involved Lario Reti Holding, the operator of the Integrated Water Service for all the Municipalities of the Province of Lecco. They told us how they use SMS messages in their communication with citizens.

Lario Reti needed to manage unplanned interruptions, meaning all those service suspensions in certain areas of the province caused by urgent reasons and force majeure, such as: sudden leaks, broken pipes caused by third-party works, technical problems at plants, lack of electricity, drought, etc.

These interruptions heavily affect the company’s reputation. Therefore, in order to protect its image and business, Lario Reti opted for transparent and immediate communication with citizens through SMS messages.

The integration between the proprietary database and the sending platform allows Lario Reti to report about emergencies automatically and in real time to all inhabitants of the affected areas.

Informing and offering support

SMS is a fundamental tool to integrate customer care activities. It enables customers to get in touch with companies, receive answers about their doubts and uncertainties, and be supported and informed in case of urgent news.

A study by Ovum and Tyntec revealed that 56% of consumers would choose text messages to communicate with companies. A pool of a thousand respondents in the US and Germany revealed that consumers’ priorities involve getting in touch with the companies quickly (80%) and finding answers to questions just as quickly (74%).

SMS is a fast and effective channel for customers to ask questions and get prompt answers. For the most part, questions concern easily identifiable issues that can be organized into precise and circumscribed themes.

Both companies and people will benefit significantly from the implementation of an efficient customer care service via SMS.

To sum up

Doing all this is pretty simple. Just rely on a sending platform like MailUp, which puts all the tools for creating, sending, tracking, and automating SMS campaigns at your disposal. These may be oriented according to the aforementioned purposes.

Our advice is to request a free trial and begin to test the real advantages of SMS Marketing.

Try MailUp'

Notes:

(1) Messaging apps: WhatsApp is used by 22 million Italians (while worldwide it has 1.2 billion active users per month); Facebook Messenger is used by 15 million Italians (1.2 billion active users per month in the world). On the other hand, Telegram is used by about 3.5 million Italians. The most active users are those in the 15-24 age range. This group uses it because of its privacy characteristics (it was the first to introduce end-to-end encryption) and for the presence of BOTs. Torna su

(2) Flash sales: Flash sales are time-based online sales promoted by individual brands or by dedicated portals. The products are sold for a limited time period, at very discounted prices (further, offers are for members only). This is a widespread practice, especially in the clothing and accessories sector.Torna su

(3) Utilities: the utilities sector includes companies operating in the field of supplying services, such as water, electricity, and gas. These are public service companies that supply essential goods and services to the community under a monopoly or quasi-monopoly regime. They are, therefore, subject to particular regulations by the public authorities, both in terms of management and the setting of tariffs.Torna su

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