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What is SMS Marketing & How to Do it ? (All You Should Know)

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SMS marketing refers to sending marketing messages via text message, a form of opt-in marketing requiring subscribers to sign up for the service. This distinguishes it from social media marketing, where marketers post public content that people can opt to like or follow. Examples of common SMS marketing types include personalized promotions, discounts or offers, remarketing, and surveys. 

Consumers are increasingly comfortable engaging with businesses via their mobile devices and, in many cases, expect to be able to contact them through messaging or text. Now the main question comes into the frame: How to do SMS marketing in India? This content will offer all information about how you can get the most out of SMS marketing in India with references to SMS marketing services.

What Is SMS Marketing ?

SMS customer service is the process of communicating with customers via text messages, allowing them to engage with customer service agents through texting. According to Juniper Research, global mobile business messaging grew by 10% in 2020, reaching 2.7 trillion messages, with SMS accounting for 98% of the traffic. Retailers accounted for 408 billion of these messages. They used them primarily for functions such as order confirmations, dispatch notifications, tracking information, and delivery updates, all under the umbrella of SMS customer service.

Gartner predicts that by 2025, 80% of customer service organizations will utilize SMS and messaging instead of native apps. Customers consider these service SMS messages to be the most valuable messages sent by businesses, with appointment reminders, delivery updates, and booking confirmations ranking higher than product or service discounts in terms of perceived value. 

SMS marketing is a method of sending promotions to customers via text messages. It’s also referred to as text message marketing and is advantageous in several ways. First, it’s fast and easy to produce and send, as no images are required, and messages have a low character limit.

Second, texts have near-perfect open rates, as they are opened 98% of the time compared to email marketing, with an average open rate of 21.3%. SMS marketing also gets high response rates, averaging 45%, while email click-through rates are typically below 7%. Customers are likelier to click on a link sent through text messages than email.

Read more: Top 10 Uses Of SMS In Banking And Finance

Why SMS Marketing In India?

SMS marketing offers several advantages over other digital marketing methods. Firstly, it is fast and easy to create as it does not require designing images and has a low character limit. Text messages also reach recipients faster than email or social media marketing, as customers receive instant phone notifications. Indian businesses can make a big difference with SMS services.

Moreover, SMS marketing in India has near-perfect open rates, with marketing texts being opened 98% of the time, compared to the average open rate of 21.3% for marketing emails. Finally, SMS marketing also has high response rates, with an average response rate of 45%, while email click-through rates rarely exceed 7%. Customers are more likely to click on links sent through text messages.

The advantages of SMS marketing Include:

Flexible

SMS marketing provides numerous possibilities in a compact 160-character space. Companies can use it to welcome new customers, remind them of upcoming bills, confirm appointments, run flash sales, offer VIP customer discounts, send order confirmations and shipping updates, provide tech support, and distribute customer feedback surveys. With SMS marketing, the opportunities to engage customers through text message marketing are endless.

Customizable

SMS marketing allows you to tailor your communications to customers’ preferences, including how they want to be contacted, what types of communications they want to receive, and how often you contact them. You can create a more positive brand experience by catering to customers’ wishes.

Zero-Party Data

Privacy is a significant concern for consumers, and SMS marketing offers a valuable opportunity to collect zero-party data, which is data that the customer has willingly shared with a brand. You can use this data to personalize their experience further.

Low Competition

Despite widespread text messaging, most brands don’t utilize SMS as a marketing medium. The space is less crowded than platforms like email, making it easier to stand out and face less competition for customers’ attention.

Cost Effective

SMS campaigns are less expensive than traditional forms of marketing and advertising, yet they are versatile and customizable, providing the potential for higher ROI. Additionally, SMS marketing provides more nuanced insights into campaign performance than traditional advertising.

Data Friendly

SMS marketing lets you collect behavioral data, such as the types of messages subscribers read and click on. This information helps you refine future messaging and continually improve performance.

How To Do SMS Marketing In India?

How to use SMS marketing can be a simple process, and it’s even simpler than email or social media marketing because it doesn’t require a design component. Here’s what you should do to get started with SMS marketing:

Get a list of customers who have permitted you to message them. It’s against the law to text people who haven’t explicitly given you permission in India. Before you start an SMS marketing campaign, ensure your recipients’ list has given you the go-ahead to send messages. Remove anyone whose permission status you can’t confirm. SMS software can help you collect customer information and ensure compliance.

Use a tool to send your messages. You’ll require software to automate your message sends. Some services provide text message marketing exclusively, but you could also choose to use an integrated system for SMS communication. 

Create your message. Your texts don’t need to be as long as an email newsletter. In fact, the shorter, the better. Integrated systems allow you to send messages up to 300 characters, which is about 2-5 sentences. Ensure a clear call to action and include a way for your customers to opt out if they are no longer interested in receiving messages from you. Opt-outs are required by law.

Track results. After you’ve sent a message, monitor its performance. Check how many people clicked on a link if you included one in your message. If you created a special discount code exclusive to your SMS campaign, monitor how many people used it when they made a purchase and the number of sales you generated. Compare these figures to the number of messages you sent.

Read more: Top 10 Most Popular Bulk SMS Service Providers In India

SMS Marketing Services In India

Text messaging is a convenient way to communicate with friends and a powerful tool for small businesses to market their products or services. One of the benefits of text message marketing is that it allows customers to choose to receive or stop receiving messages. It is a quick, affordable, engaging, and interactive method of marketing that can reach a wide range of customers. Additionally, text message marketing can integrate with other marketing channels to strengthen customer loyalty and improve engagement. 

The success of any business hinges on its marketing strategy, which starts with identifying the target audience. Effective data collection and mining are crucial for pitching products and services to the right audience. After determining the target audience and market, an effective tool is needed to reach potential customers. Bulk SMS is a tool that has been around for a few years and has become a preferred marketing tool for major companies due to the rapid growth of mobile subscribers in India.

Messaging API

The Messaging API is built to do more than just basic tasks like processing campaigns, scheduling messages, managing contacts, and receiving incoming texts. It is easy to programmatically send and receive text messages and interact with your customers globally using SMS API platforms. SMS marketing lets you engage with targeted prospects and enable your app with SMS in minutes so that you can make a difference with 2-factor authentication, SMS survey, SMS auto responder, appointment reminder, etc. 

Promotional SMS 

SMS promotional messages are an affordable method to advertise various types of businesses and update customers about discounts, sales, and exclusive deals that may attract their attention. The benefits of using bulk SMS for promotional purposes are numerous, including cost-effectiveness, boosting marketing campaigns, elevating brand awareness, fostering customer loyalty and engagement, and enhancing customer communication.

The use of a promotional SMS gateway enables the distribution of bulk sales and marketing text messages to promote a company’s brand, products, or services. Some examples of typical promotional bulk SMS messages include advertising in-store and online sales, offering discount codes to be used either online or in-store, special deals such as buy-one-get-one-half-price which are only available in-store, invitations to events like product launches or customer days, announcements of new website launches, exclusive offers valid for a limited time, and competitions.

Transactional SMS

Businesses use transactional SMS to give customers crucial non-promotional information such as order updates and delivery notifications. This type of SMS allows companies to communicate directly with their customers. One of the most frequently encountered instances of transactional SMS is when customers receive text messages informing them about their order status or shipping details for an online purchase.

Whatsapp Business API

The WhatsApp Business API is an interface that enables businesses to communicate with their customers through unlimited WhatsApp messages. It was introduced by Facebook in August 2018 and was developed specifically for medium and large businesses to enhance their customer engagement on WhatsApp. Since its launch, many businesses have switched to WhatsApp for customer engagement due to its various benefits. However, businesses require a separate CRM and dashboard provided by WhatsApp business providers to use the WhatsApp Business API.

SMS Marketing For Different Businesses 

Recent studies indicate that bulk SMS marketing yields quick and efficient responses compared to other modes of communication. SMS marketers offer a cloud-based SMS marketing tool that enables real-time measurement of campaign responses with just a few clicks. Bulk SMS API can be seamlessly integrated with third-party software/applications/CRM/ERP to enhance data analysis and reporting.

The popularity of bulk SMS service in India is growing daily in the current market, and choosing a reliable provider can be challenging. Do not forget to ask your bulk SMS service provider in India some questions before committing to a long-term relationship. Today SMS marketing is a big boon for modern enterprises, small businesses, and start-ups. 

1. Start-Up And Small Businesses

A professional SMS marketing company in India like Fonada offers start-ups and small businesses the opportunity to utilize high-quality customer engagement solutions without being concerned about expensive setup and infrastructure costs.

With their cloud-based solutions, start-up and small businesses of all types can effortlessly begin marketing and selling their products or services, and the solutions can be scaled in tandem with their business growth.

2. Enterprise Businesses 

Leading SMS marketing service providers in India can offer enterprises dependable and expandable cloud-based customer engagement solutions.

They specialize in designing customized solutions that can adapt to modern companies’ increasing needs while maintaining top-notch cybersecurity standards. Their commitment to innovation ensures that enterprise businesses remain ahead of their market competitors.

3.Travel and Hospitality:

  • Booking Confirmations: Send confirmations for bookings and reservations.
  • Exclusive Deals: Offer exclusive travel deals, package discounts, or upgrades.
  • Travel Tips: Share travel tips, destination highlights, or packing suggestions.

4. Healthcare:

  • Appointment Reminders: Send reminders for upcoming appointments or vaccination schedules.
  • Health Tips: Share health tips, wellness advice, or information about new services.
  • Prescription Refill Reminders: Notify patients when it’s time to refill prescriptions.

5. Real Estate:

  • Property Alerts: Send updates on new listings, price reductions, or open houses.
  • Appointment Confirmations: Confirm appointments for property viewings or consultations.
  • Market Updates: Share real estate market trends and tips.

Conclusion 

SMS marketing is clearly an effective and cost-efficient way for businesses to assess their target audience in India. To successfully implement SMS marketing, businesses should first identify their target prospects and market, collect and mine relevant data, and select a reliable bulk SMS gateway provider.

Additionally, businesses should consider promotional and transactional SMS to enhance their marketing campaigns, increase brand awareness, and improve customer communication. By utilizing these strategies, companies can effectively engage with customers and drive growth in the competitive Indian market.

Once you know how to do SMS marketing in India, it is time to find an SMS marketing company in India. Experienced and competent SMS marketing service provider in India can help you with quality SMS marketing services India.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) of SMS Marketing

Why is SMS marketing effective?

SMS marketing is effective due to its high open rates and immediacy. Text messages are often read within minutes of receipt, making them a powerful tool for time-sensitive promotions and communication. Additionally, SMS is a direct and personal channel that reaches users on their mobile devices.

What are some best practices for SMS marketing?

  1. Keep messages concise and relevant.
  2. Personalize messages whenever possible.
  3. Include a clear call-to-action (CTA).
  4. Respect time zones when scheduling messages.
  5. Provide value to recipients.
  6. Include an option for recipients to opt-out easily.
  7. Comply with SMS marketing regulations and obtain proper consent.

How can businesses measure the success of their SMS marketing campaigns?

Metrics for success include open rates, click-through rates, conversion rates, and opt-out rates. Businesses should also analyze customer feedback and track the impact of SMS campaigns on overall sales and engagement.

Can businesses use multimedia in SMS marketing?

While traditional SMS is limited to text, multimedia messages (MMS) allow businesses to include images, videos, and audio. However, MMS messages may have additional costs, and businesses should be mindful of file size limitations imposed by carriers.