About ten years ago, I was thrilled to be chosen to manage the email marketing communication channel for the sixth largest bank in America. Email marketing got about the same response rates as direct mail, but for a tiny fraction of the cost. Return on investment (ROI) soared and product managers were positively giddy. We had the magic bullet. Today email marketing has become mainstream, and only about 22% of promotional emails are even opened. Fortunately for all of us geeky marketers and product managers, a new superstar communication channel is emerging – bulk text messaging. Here’s what it has going for it:
- 97 percent of text messages are opened and read.
- 219 Americans own cell phones.
- 80 percent of cell phone owners keep their phones with them all the time.
- Text messages are read within seconds or minutes, as opposed to hours or days for email.
Bottom line – If you have a marketing message that you want to get in front of targeted prospects, in real time, text them!
- Here are the mechanics of how bulk text messaging works.
- Register with a texting service.
- Upon registration you will receive a five digit number for inbound texting.
- Select a code word that is representative of your business.
- People opt in to your list by texting your code word to your five digit number. Their cell number is captured, allowing you to send future outbound texts to that number. how to find hidden text messages on phone
- If people no longer want to receive text message from you, they simply reply to your message, texting “stop”, and their number will be removed from your list.
There are dozens of uses for bulk text messaging. Here are a few scenarios: 1. Bob owns a diner and he wants to be able to text special offers to his customers.
- He prints postcards and places them on the stands on each table, or passes them out with menus. They say something like, “Text “bobsdiner” to 12345 to receive discounts and special offers.” Bob might even decide to sweeten the deal by offering a free slice of pie to each person who texts.
- Bob’s diner has a record breaking weekend, but on Tuesday the dining room is almost empty. He’s thinking he may need to close early, and feels just sick about all the perishable food that is going to waste. Bob really wishes he could get some of those weekend customers back through the door.
- Then he remembers-the text list! At 4:00 PM he texts his followers with a special inner circle BOGO promotion. By 7:00 PM the place is packed.