Text or SMS messaging has proved to be a cost-effective and reliable marketing strategy for a business to communicate with its customers. But can be confusing and overwhelming to start text message marketing. There are many ways to use text messages to reach out to customers. How can you determine the method that suits your business and target audiences?
Many survey reports reveal that more than 90% of customers opt for SMS/ text updates from brands. Moreover, 98% of Americans own a mobile phone and they check their phones around 63 times per day (on average). Text messaging is indeed a great way to expand your market presence. But how does text messaging help to generate leads or grow the customer base?
Let’s find out.
Use Text Messaging to Generate Leads
● Plan Your Strategy
Your first step should always be planning the lead generation strategy. You can’t start sending messages to people at random. Every business/ organization has to get consent from the customer to send them text messages (promotional or transactional). Work with your sales team and marketers to establish a lead generation strategy using text messages.
● Integrate Business Texting Software with CRM
You can do this later too, but we recommend starting with an automated system for convenience and better results. Instead of manually sending messages, set up business texting software to schedule bulk messages to customers. Service providers like TXTImpact help businesses streamline their text marketing strategy and increase returns. You can use your existing landline numbers for text messaging or get a toll-free number for your business.
● Import Leads
The next step is to import leads from your contact database and add them to the business text messaging software. However, remember that you cannot yet send them promotional messages. Here, you are preparing to implement your lead generation strategy.
● Capture Leads (with Consent)
This is a vital step in the entire process. You'll never want your customers to get annoyed or sue you for sending messages without consent. So how do you capture leads with consent? That’s where shortcode helps. Create a shortcode keyword and ask customers to send it as a text message to your number. This is a form of explicit consent from the customers, agreeing to get messages from your business. Follow the guidelines to avoid legal complications.
● Online Opt-in Forms
Shortcodes are useful but are not enough if you want to generate more leads. You should different methods to get customer consent and add them to the database. An online form is a great way to convert website visitors and email newsletter subscribers to SMS contacts. Make the form easy to fill out by keeping it short. Ask only for basic information (name, phone number, city, etc.) and include a link to the T&C.
Auto-responders are life-savers. Imagine a customer waiting and waiting for you to respond to a message. Auto-responder sends an immediate reply to any message received from the customers/ leads. It can be a single line saying you’ll get back to them soon, or a list of instructions the customers should follow to reach customer care. Either way, it’ll create a good impression of your business.
● Collect Data from Qualified Leads
Once you have qualified leads after completing the previous steps, it’s time to know more about your prospective customers. Ask for additional information by conducting surveys. You can send the survey link in the text message and offer something in return. Gathering data about leads will help in correctly segmenting them into categories by running data analytics.
● Customer Segmentation
Customer segmentation is another crucial step in generating leads. When you categorize customers based on their demographics, purchase behavior, interests, etc., you can create content targeting each group/ segment. A customer can be a part of more than one segment. But make sure to define the segments with clarity to avoid bombarding customers with promotional campaigns.
● Text Personalization
Personalized text messages have a greater response. This is because what you offer aligns with what the customer wants. Another form of personalization is to include the customer’s name and other identifying information in the text message. Keep the tone informal yet polite. Limit the content to 160 characters. Use simple and clear language to prevent confusion.
● Irresistible CTAs
The ultimate aim is to convert qualified leads to customers. Nudge them to take the step and place an order. Create irresistible call-to-actions and text message campaigns to increase the conversion rate. Analyze your KPIs to determine whether your strategy is working and make necessary changes.
TXTImpact is a leading business texting software and solution provider in the US. Our clients include small and medium-sized businesses across various industries. Our services are affordable and customized to suit your specifications.