How To Do SMS Marketing (Everything You Need To Know)

One of the toughest challenges for marketers today is to get attention.

Your inbox is flooded.

Social media notifications spamming your browsers and mobile phone screens.

Ads are blocked, but by adding SMS to your marketing mix, you can bypass ad blockers and ensure your message reaches your audience.

And calls are ignored.

Content is being slapped by Google.

Social media companies are reducing reach and sometimes even shadow-banning its users.

If you look at the engagement rates for any of these channels it is incredibly low, 2% for ads is considered good, 10% great. 20% open rates for emails is the norm, 40%+ is great. 

But imagine being able to send out a message to your leads, customers and subscribers where anywhere from 87-97% of them would not only see your message but also read it.

How would that impact your business or organisation?

What is this channel? 

SMS marketing.

When you really need to get your marketing message seen for example big sales days or important company information then SMS should be in your toolkit. Additionally, you can also use SMS in conjunction with email to maximize reach and impact.

From increased sales and engagement to cost-effectiveness and unparalleled reach, SMS marketing is a game-changer

If you’re ready to take your marketing to the next level and connect with your audience personally, keep reading. We’ll dive into the world of SMS marketing, equipping you with the strategies you need to launch campaigns that resonate, engage, and drive real results.

Understanding SMS Text Marketing

Before we dive into the nitty-gritty, let’s start with the basics.

SMS (short message service) marketing is like email marketing where you send promotional sms messages, updates, and offers via text messages to your sms subscribers. SMS is a great direct and personal way to reach your customers, with a higher open rate than email marketing – a staggering 98% compared to a measly 20% for emails.

But why is SMS mobile marketing so effective? 

For one, we’re glued to our phones these days, and a text message is almost impossible to ignore. Plus, SMS marketing allows you to cut through the noise and deliver your message directly to your audience’s pockets (or hands, if we’re being literal), showcasing a prime sms marketing example of direct engagement.

Why You Should Use SMS Marketing

  • High open rates: As mentioned, text message marketing open rates are through the roof, with a whopping 98% of messages being opened.
  • Instant delivery: Unlike email, text messages are delivered instantly, ensuring your message is seen as soon as it’s sent. This benefit of SMS ensures high visibility for critical communications.
  • Increased engagement: SMS marketing allows for two-way communication, making it easy for customers to respond, ask questions, or take action.
  • Cost-effective: Compared to traditional marketing methods, SMS marketing is relatively inexpensive and can provide a significant return on investment.
  • Wide reach: With over 5 billion active mobile users worldwide, SMS marketing allows you to reach a vast audience.

Types of Bulk SMS Marketing Campaigns

Now that you understand the power of SMS marketing let’s explore the different types of campaigns you can run:

Promotional SMS Marketing Messages

These are the bread and butter of SMS marketing. Promotional campaigns involve sending out messages about sales, discounts, new product launches, or special offers. The goal is to drive customer engagement, increase sales, and build brand awareness.

Transactional SMS Messages

Transactional campaigns are all about keeping your customers in the loop. These messages might include order confirmations, shipping updates, appointment reminders, or account notifications. While not directly promotional, these messages help build trust and provide excellent customer service.

Lead Generation Campaigns

SMS marketing can also be an effective tool for generating new leads. By offering incentives like discounts or exclusive content, you can encourage customers to opt-in to your SMS list, allowing you to nurture those leads and eventually convert them into sales.

Best SMS Marketing Practices

Now that you understand the basics and different types of SMS campaigns, let’s dive into some best practices to ensure your SMS marketing efforts are a resounding success.

Obtain Customer Consent

Before you send a text message to customers, it’s crucial to obtain permission from those customers, demonstrating a responsible practice in both sms and email marketing communications. Not only is this a legal requirement in many regions, but it’s also a matter of respect. Be transparent about what kind of messages they can expect and how frequently they’ll receive them.

Keep Messages Simple and Engaging

When it comes to SMS marketing, brevity is key. Craft concise, easy-to-read messages that quickly convey the intended information. Ensure your texts are relevant, aligned with your brand messaging, and provide value to the recipient.

Offer Incentives

Who doesn’t love a good deal? Offering incentives like discounts, promotions, or exclusive offers can be a powerful way to drive engagement and encourage customers to take action. Just be sure to deliver on your promises – nothing turns people off faster than a bait-and-switch.

Focus on Personalization and Segmentation

Personalization is a crucial aspect of successful SMS marketing. By segmenting your audience based on demographics, behaviors, or preferences, you can tailor your messages to better resonate with each group. This level of personalization not only increases engagement but also helps build stronger connections with your customers.

Integrate SMS into Multichannel Marketing

SMS marketing shouldn’t exist in a vacuum. To truly maximize its potential, integrate it into your overall multichannel marketing strategy. Ensure consistency across different channels to provide a unified brand experience for your customers.

Avoid Redirecting Customers

While including links in your SMS messages can be tempting, be cautious about redirecting customers elsewhere. The goal of SMS marketing is to deliver concise, valuable information directly to their phones. If you must include a link, ensure it’s relevant and doesn’t come across as spammy or a phishing attempt.

Be Creative with Content

Don’t be afraid to experiment with creative content formats like emojis, capitalization, and automated replies. Innovate with messaging styles to make your texts more engaging and interactive for recipients. Just be sure to keep it on-brand and relevant.

Act on Data Insights

One of the beautiful things about SMS marketing is the wealth of data it generates. Use this data to make informed decisions about your campaigns. Analyze performance metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates to optimize future campaigns and improve customer engagement continuously.

Building an SMS Digital Marketing Strategy

Now that you have a solid understanding of SMS marketing best practices, let’s dive into how to build an effective SMS marketing strategy for your business.

Understand SMS Marketing

The first step is to define what SMS marketing means for your business. At its core, SMS marketing involves sending promotional content via text messages to build brand awareness, drive engagement, and ultimately increase sales.

Define Your Audience

Before you can craft compelling messages, you need to know who you’re talking to. Analyze your customer data and conduct market research to define buyer personas. This will help you tailor your messages to target audience interests and goals, increasing their relevance and impact.

Determine SMS Marketing Goals

Your SMS marketing efforts should be aligned with your overall marketing and business strategies. Use the Objectives and Key Results (OKR) framework to set measurable, achievable goals for your SMS campaigns. Whether you’re looking to increase sales, improve customer retention, or drive website traffic, clearly defined goals will help you measure success and refine your approach.

Choose the Type of SMS Campaigns

With your audience and goals defined, it’s time to decide on the types of SMS campaigns you’ll run. Will you focus on welcome series to engage new customers? Promotional campaigns to drive sales? Abandoned cart reminders to recover lost revenue? The options are endless, so choose the campaigns that best align with your objectives.

Pick the Right SMS Marketing Program or Platform

Not all SMS marketing platforms are created equal; hence, selecting the right sms marketing software is critical to the success of your campaigns. Take the time to research and select a platform that suits your business needs. Evaluate factors like features, pricing models, scalability, technical support, and reputation before making your choice.

Set Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)

To measure the success of your SMS campaigns, you’ll need to define key performance indicators (KPIs). These metrics might include open rates, delivery rates, conversion rates, revenue generated, and click-through rates. By tracking these KPIs, you’ll be able to identify what’s working and what needs to be tweaked.

Build Your SMS Contact List

A successful SMS marketing strategy relies on a robust contact list. Implement strategies to grow your list through opt-ins, engaging content, and incentives. Remember, quality trumps quantity – focus on building a list of engaged, interested subscribers.

Segment Your Audience

Once you’ve built your contact list, segment your audience based on demographics, behaviors, or preferences. This will allow you to personalize your messages for each segment, improving engagement and relevance.

Build SMS Workflows

To streamline your SMS marketing efforts, create automated workflows for different types of messages. For example, you might set up a welcome series for new subscribers, abandoned cart reminders, or post-purchase follow-ups. Automated workflows save time and ensure your messages are sent at optimal times for maximum impact.

Test Messaging

Before launching your SMS campaigns, conduct A/B testing to optimize your message content, timing, and calls-to-action. Use the feedback from these tests to refine your strategy and improve your chances of success.

Measure Success

As your SMS campaigns run, track your defined KPIs to evaluate their performance. Analyze the data to identify areas for improvement and celebrate your successes.

Optimize Your Campaigns

SMS marketing is an ongoing process. Continuously refine your strategy based on the performance data you gather. Implement changes to enhance customer engagement and drive better results over time.

Implementing Your SMS Marketing Plan

With your SMS marketing strategy in place, it’s time to put it into action. Here are the key steps to implementing your plan:

Build Your Subscriber List

Develop opt-in strategies to grow your SMS contact list. Successful opt-in strategies are foundational to growing your base of sms subscribers. Utilize various channels like your website, social media, in-store promotions, and email campaigns to encourage customers to subscribe to your SMS campaigns.

Segment Your Audience

Divide your subscriber list into segments based on demographics, behaviour, or preferences. This will allow you to personalize your messages and enhance engagement and relevance.

Create SMS Workflows

Develop automated workflows for different types of messages, such as welcome series, promotional campaigns, or abandoned cart reminders. Ensure these messages are sent at optimal times for maximum impact and engagement.

Test Your Messages

Conduct A/B testing to optimize message content, timing, and calls-to-action. Use feedback from these tests to refine and improve your SMS marketing strategy continuously.

Monitor Key Metrics

Track essential metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. Analyze this data to measure the success of your SMS campaigns and identify areas for improvement.

Optimize Your Campaigns

Continuously refine your SMS marketing strategy based on performance data. Implement changes to enhance customer engagement and drive better results.

Ensure Compliance

Adhere to regulations like obtaining consent and providing opt-out options. Stay updated on legal requirements to maintain a compliant SMS marketing strategy.

Engage with Subscribers

Encourage two-way communication by allowing subscribers to respond to your messages. This interaction enhances the benefits of SMS as a direct and personal channel. Use SMS as a tool for customer support, feedback collection, and building relationships.

Personalize Messages

Tailor your messages based on subscriber preferences, behaviors, or past interactions. Personalization enhances the effectiveness of your SMS campaigns and boosts customer engagement.

Maintain Consistency

Establish a consistent schedule for sending messages to maintain audience engagement. Ensure that the frequency of your messages aligns with subscriber expectations and preferences.


SMS marketing is a powerful tool that can help you cut through the noise and engage with your audience in a personal, immediate way. By following the best practices and strategies outlined in this article, you can craft an effective SMS marketing plan that resonates with your customers, drives engagement, and ultimately contributes to the growth and success of your business.

Remember, SMS marketing is an ongoing process – continuously refine your approach, test new strategies, and stay up-to-date with industry trends and regulations. With dedication and a commitment to providing value to your subscribers, you can unlock the full potential of this powerful marketing channel.