Bernard Meyer
February 27, 2020

SMS Marketing 101: A Guide to Get You Started

SMS Marketing 101

People carry their phones around with them every day. Taking note of this, businesses decided that they could implement texts and other services into their marketing strategies. From here, businesses began to form SMS marketing strategies to reach out to customers in a convenient way.

While SMS marketing can benefit businesses, some may not know how they should approach it. This guide will help you to understand the purpose of SMS marketing, learn about different types of messages that you can send to customers, and apply key tips. Here is your guide to using SMS in your business’s marketing strategy.

What is SMS Marketing?

SMS stands for short message services. This means that you use channels, such as text messages, to quickly communicate with other people. When it’s SMS marketing, you send texts to your customers and subscribers so that they can stay informed about your business.

This process involves using automated messages that go to customers when they meet certain conditions. Here’s an example.

  1. A customer subscribes to an SMS campaign for your business.
  2. Your automated system detects that a new subscriber entered the system.
  3. The system sends your customer a text message welcoming him or her to the service with an invite to visit your website.

In short, SMS marketing takes advantage of cell phones to send important messages and updates to your customers. This allows them to stay updated and to take advantage of deals and other opportunities.

Why it Matters

Some businesses may not see the need for SMS marketing. After all, you can contact customers through emails or social media, so why bother with texts? Text messages work as a way to gain the immediate attention of customers so that they will act quickly or receive time-sensitive information.

For example, what if you offer an exclusive deal that only lasts for two or three days? If a customer doesn’t regularly check their social media accounts or their emails then they will miss out on these deals. However, people keep their phones with them throughout the day, so this increases the odds of them seeing and acting on time-sensitive activities.

By using SMS marketing, you can easily contact your subscribers and inform them about information that matters in that moment. This will save them time and they will feel grateful that you informed or reminded them about deals and other important information.

The Benefits of SMS Marketing

While SMS marketing does give you quick contact with customers, some people may wonder if the effort is worth the time, money, and resources. As a short answer, yes, it is. But let’s go over some data.


As shown in the image, nearly 50% of customers prefer to receive text messages for updates. This makes sense because they instantly receive the message. Also, more companies than ever before text their customers. This means that it won’t come across as weird or strange if you offer a texting subscription to your customers.

Finally, the last set of statistics shows the effectiveness of texts. 49 out of 50 people will open their text messages and 19 out of 20 people will read and respond within three minutes. This shows the effectiveness, speed, and usefulness of an SMS marketing campaign.

Useful SMS Messages

If you don’t know what types of messages to send through your SMS marketing strategy, here are some useful ones that customers appreciate.

  1. Welcome texts.
  2. Deals and updates.
  3. Reminder texts.

Each of these provides information that interests customers. They work as a way to give a call-to-action (CTA) to your customers so that they can interact with your business.

Welcome texts are a great way to introduce new customers to your business or products while giving them a general idea of what to expect. You can also invite them to visit your website. After that, you can inform them about deals or updates and invite them to make a purchase. You can also set up the system to send exclusive updates on their birthdays.

Reminder texts allow you to inform customers about abandoned carts and delivery updates. These work as a way to remind them about your company and the products that they interacted with or purchased.

There are multiple messages that you can send to people. However, these key ones work great as a starting place for businesses establishing an SMS marketing strategy. They will help you to effectively reach out to customers.

You may also want to read: How to Maximize SMS for Effective B2B Marketing

Key Tips

While you may want to immediately send as many messages as possible to customers, you should keep these key tips in mind.

  • Don’t overwhelm customers
  • Find the right balance
  • Make sure they want the messages

While you want to invite your customers to act and to make purchases, you don’t want customers to think of you as pushy or rude. Aggressive invitations can push people away. Make sure that you give polite invitations that make people feel comfortable. However, keep your messaging straightforward, so that customers know what you want.

You should also find the right balance when it comes to messages. This means that you should send messages often enough to remind your subscribers about your business but not too often where they view the messages as an annoyance. Finding this right balance will keep your customers happy with plenty of information without bothering them.

Most importantly, your customers shouldn’t feel trapped when it comes to your SMS marketing. They should receive messages because they want to. If you try to constantly force it on people then they will resent your business. Make sure that you create an appealing business and product that people want to receive updates for.

Keep these tips in mind to make your customers happy. They will allow you to balance out your messages in a way that appeals to your customers.

Improving Your SMS Marketing

Seek to improve your SMS marketing as you send important messages to your customers and apply the tips mentioned earlier. Look at how the messages performed and if people responded well to them. You can find this out by asking your customers questions through a survey. Look at some of these questions that you could ask them.

  • Do you feel like we send too little, too many, or the right amount of texts?
  • Why do you subscribe to receive text messages?
  • What can we change to improve your experience with our text messages?

Questions like these will allow your customers to inform you about changes that will improve your SMS marketing strategy.

You can also look at your customer data to improve your SMS marketing strategy. Try out different text messages and see which ones get the highest open rates, click-through rates, and purchases from your customers. By looking at these statistics you can see what messages your customers prefer and which ones perform better.

You should improve your SMS marketing strategy as much as possible. This will help you to improve your metrics, provide a better service, and gain the approval of your customers.

Final Comments

SMS marketing benefits so many companies because it provides quick and easy messaging to customers. You can welcome them to your business, inform them about deals, and remind them about important details. This provides you an opportunity to interact with customers outside of websites and social media.

You will gain more customers and increase your sales as you apply these tips to your SMS marketing strategy. Since people keep their phones with them at most times, you can get important messages to them as quickly as possible. Get started on SMS marketing so that your business can gain more profits and continue to grow.


Bernard Meyer is a content marketer for Omnisend, an eCommerce marketing automation platform dedicated to helping eCommerce stores build strong, lasting relationships with their customers. He also has a passion for good research and helping eCommerce businesses with their multichannel marketing needs.  You can find him on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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