Text To Subscribe: SMS Marketing To Help Your Business Grow

Marketing 17 minute read 1st May 2024

Marketing for businesses is constantly growing, and there are always new opportunities to promote your business to customers. Almost everyone has a mobile these days, so text-to-subscribe marketing is quickly becoming a popular marketing strategy.

It’s a dynamic strategy that lets you engage with your customer base in a more direct, personalized, and effective way. Here, we will discuss this approach in detail and how it benefits businesses.

We’ll also look at how it compares with other marketing strategies and ways to remain compliant with regulations.

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What Is Text To Subscribe Marketing?

Text-to-subscribe marketing is a strategy that businesses use to market to their customers. Customers can subscribe to their SMS services by sending a quick text message with a keyword. Then, they will enter your SMS marketing lists and will receive future messages from your business.

Businesses can send subscribers promotional messages, updates, new offers, or any other information via text message. A marketing approach based on text is convenient when a business wants to build a subscriber list. Bulk SMS advertising makes it easy to engage with customers in a more personal and direct way.

Benefits of SMS Marketing

A text-to-subscribe service offers various benefits for businesses looking to reach their customers easily. There are quite a few reasons why businesses may use SMS marketing platforms to get results.

  1. Get seen: Compared to all other ways of marketing, text messages have a high open rate of around 98%. It’s more likely that messages are by customers.
  2. Instant delivery: SMS messages reach the user instantly. It’s a great way to make sure that any time-sensitive information will reach them promptly.
  3. More engagement: Text-to-subscribe marketing has higher engagement rates. Many customers respond to or act on the targeted message.
  4. Personalize your messages: SMS marketing tools personalize to specific demographics and recipients. Whether you target by name specifically or tailor messages to their preferences, you can be super relevant.

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SMS vs. Email: What Gets Better Results?

Both SMS marketing and email marketing are equally powerful tools for businesses to engage with their customers. There are some key differences to consider to help you decide what strategy may work best for your business.

SMS marketing delivers instantly. There is a higher chance that your customers will see it immediately. With emails, they may end up in spam or promotional tabs, so there is a delay in delivery and engagement. Additionally, nowadays is harder to get people in your email database. As email marketing is widespread, people tend to ignore the text when signing up for mailing lists.

SMS marketing tends to have a higher engagement rate. People tend to read text messages within minutes of receiving it. Emails may not have as high an open rate. However, you can have a broader reach as they tend to be more detailed than texts.

For businesses, SMS marketing can be more expensive to run. Email marketing tends to be a little more cost-effective as it’s cheaper than sending texts.

With SMS messages, there is a limit in length and detail, but you do have the opportunity to get personal. You can be a little more targeted and casual with your approach. Emails can be equally personal as you can include images, links, and more detailed content.

They both have their advantages and disadvantages, so it really depends on what works best for your business. However, many businesses opt to use both marketing strategies for different purposes.

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How To Build an SMS Marketing Database

Building an SMS marketing database includes strategic planning and careful execution. It’s important to comply with regulations and engage effectively with customers. Follow these steps to help you build a database.

  1. Get consent: Before adding customers to your SMS marketing database, you need explicit consent to build your contact lists. Let them know the terms of the subscription and make opting in and opting out easy. To operate legally, you need people to consent to subscribe to text alert initiatives.
  2. Use SMS keywords: Use easy keywords for users to subscribe to text messages marketing lists. Keywords are a replacement for sign-up forms. Make these keywords clear on adverts, social media posts, and your website so that it’s easy to join. It can be as simple as ‘JOIN’ or ‘YES,’ or you can make the keyword more unique to your business.
  3. Collect customer data: You can collect customer data through web forms, social media interactions, and in-store sign-ups. This helps you with the next step.
  4. Segment your customers: Separate your audience based on their demographics, preferences, purchase history, and how they engage with your business. This way, you can personalize messages to make content relevant to their unique experience.
  5. Use incentives: Offer incentives of value to your customers for opting-in. Aside from personalized marketing, they need to get something out of subscribing to your marketing texts. Whether it’s discounts or giveaways, give them something in return.

These steps build a great relationship with your customers and make the opt-in process easy and compliant with regulations.

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Getting Customers To Join a Text-To-Subscribe Service

The biggest part of SMS marketing is getting your customers to sign up. Sure, it’s a great way to market. However, how do you get customers to opt-in as SMS subscribers in the first place? There are various tools you can utilize to encourage customers to join voluntarily. That’s the most important part–it has to be voluntary.

  1. Build trust: Trust is key for business-customer relationships. You need to engage with customers through other methods first. This lets them build some trust and familiarity with you before joining.
  2. Promote opt-in: As with the text-to-join email list, the text-to-subscribe service must be clear and visible. To get people in, take advantage of your website, social media platforms, in-store, and across your other marketing campaigns.
  3. Offer incentives: Customers love unique incentives. If you were to offer incentives that you can only get for opting in, you’ll see more results. Discounts, promotional offers, and exclusive deals or freebies are great ways to get customers to opt in.
  4. Make it simple: Don’t overcomplicate the opt-in process. Keep it straightforward. Customers might not opt-in if your call to action is confusing or keywords are hard to remember.
  5. Highlight benefits: Explain to customers the benefits of subscribing to your SMS marketing. These may include access to sales, exclusive content, and personalized offers. Also, make it clear what they will get in return.
  6. Timing: Pick the right time to ask customers to opt in. If you have a store, do it during checkout or after their purchase. For websites, you can have pop-up notifications or promote them at checkout.

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Best Practices for Text-To-Subscribe Marketing

In any form of marketing, there are practices that you should follow to keep your customers and the law happy. Implementing these practices will help you engage with customers well while maintaining compliance with SMS regulations.

You need to obtain consent from customers before adding them to your SMS marketing list. This is why text-to-subscribe uses keywords, i.e., JOIN or YES, to gain clear consent. Equally, you want to make it clear how they can opt-out, i.e., STOP or UNSUBSCRIBE.

Marketing texts must provide valuable content, but they can still be fun and casual. You should offer exclusive discounts and promotions to customers, which will incentivize them to subscribe. Make sure you are relevant and engaging.

Ensure that you are optimizing your text messages for mobiles. Keep the messages short, visually appealing, and easy to read on small screens. If you overcomplicate messages, customers won’t engage.

Depending on the country where your business operates, you must follow certain compliances. For example, you must comply with the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) in the United States.

In Europe, it will be the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Make sure you know the rules for your region, obtain content, provide opt-out options, and respect your customers’ preferences.

By following good practices, you will build a successful reputation with your customers. This creates a more effective text-to-subscribe marketing strategy, enhancing brand loyalty while complying with laws.

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6 Alternative Marketing Strategies for Businesses

As a business, you should look at more than just one marketing strategy. They all have their various benefits and different ways to reach new customers. Let’s take a look at some alternative strategies.

1. Email

We’ve spoken a bit about email marketing. It’s a great way to nurture leads and communicate with customers in a more in-depth way. You can promote products and target emails to specific customers.

2. SEO

Tailoring your website for search engine optimization (SEO) is essential. SEO can improve your organic search visibility and bring you more traffic. This involves keyword research, on-page optimization, and other strategies to start ranking higher.

3. Social Media

You are lucky to be running a business at a time when social media is huge. It’s a great and simple way to reach beyond your customer base. Utilize popular platforms like Facebook, Instagram, X, and Pinterest to engage with your audience. Social media can be way more casual than other marketing strategies.

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4. Content

Content creation is a necessary skill, no matter the platform. Creating high-quality and valuable content is a great way to engage your audience. This includes blog posts, videos, infographics, or even podcasts. It helps establish your brand and naturally brings in customers.

5. Affiliate

Partner with other businesses to promote your products. This may be in exchange for a commission or also promoting them. This works well if you find a business where your customers may benefit from both of you.

For example, a coffee brand may affiliate with bars and help affiliates with their coffee shop marketing.

6. Influencers

Collaborating with influencers or key figures in your industry is a great way to promote your business. You can gain a huge reach and build credibility with audiences. People listen to influencers; it’s in the name, so why not use them?

SMS Databases and Running Campaigns

Incorporating text-to-subscribe marketing strategies into your overall marketing will diversify your approach. This allows you to reach a wider audience and drive more engagement for your business.

Want some help with your text marketing efforts? At Beambox, we are experts in SMS marketing and small business improvement. We can boost your progress with custom portals, emails, and a multi-avenue approach to attract, connect with, and keep customers.

Do you want to maximize your marketing results? Start your Beambox free trial today!

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