The 6 Biggest Misconceptions and Myths About SMS Marketing
Just like any new marketing channel, there are a handful of myths and misconceptions that managers must wade through in order to evaluate the channel’s true effectiveness. We get it — starting your text message marketing journey can feel a bit overwhelming. You’ve probably heard of a few myths and misconceptions surrounding SMS marketing, and at times, it can be difficult to differentiate fact from fiction.
If you let your fears stop you from adopting sms marketing, you will be quickly outpaced by your competitors that are using this valuable marketing tool. It may be something new for you to learn, and that can be intimidating, but it isn’t difficult.
Plus, when you consider that SMS produces engagement rates six to eight times higher than retailers normally achieve via email marketing, you’ll see that it’s worth taking the time to learn the truth.
Myths & Misconceptions About SMS Marketing Debunked
There is no better way to interact and engage with prospects and customers than text message marketing. More than any other marketing channel, text marketing routinely produces the greatest engagement, and in many instances, this increase in engagement translates to a massive boost in profits and revenues. The data speaks for itself:
- Texting can convert the cost of a $20 support call to just pennies.
- Texting is the most used mobile app; 97% of Americans use it at least once per day.
- Consumers are more likely to open text messages before any other form of mobile communication.
However, despite all of the proof available, these myths are still circulating and causing people to miss out on a profitable marketing channel.
So, let’s debunk these common SMS myths so you can start growing your business with text message marketing.
Myth 1: Only Millennials Use Text Messaging
One of the most pervasive myths about SMS marketing is that only millennials and Generation Z’ers are texting. Companies think that text marketing is only going to be effective when they are marketing to these younger generations.
The truth is that people of all ages are sending text messages. This includes Gen X’ers, baby boomers, and the lost generation.
Out of smartphone owners:
- 98% of 30 to 49-year-olds text
- 92% of people over 50 text
You should also know that 92% of the U.S. population owns a mobile device capable of receiving SMS messages. This means that even if they aren’t currently texting with businesses, they have the ability to if they think it will be worthwhile.
Therefore, the key to developing an SMS marketing strategy for ALL generations is to understand your target audience’s unique wants and needs. You need to create campaigns that your audience will find valuable.
Myth 2: SMS Marketing Isn’t That Effective
Many people assume that since text messaging isn’t as widely used as other marketing channels like social media and email, that it isn’t as effective.
However, the opposite is actually true.
Customers are responding to SMS messages faster and more consistently than they are on other channels.
- Text messages being opened and read almost 5 times more than email (98% to 20%).
- 90% of all text messages being read within 3 minutes of being received.
- 79% of mobile phone users checking for new messages within 15 minutes of waking up.
Higher message delivery is not the only benefit. SMS marketing also has a higher conversion rate than other marketing tactics.
- Text messages have a response rate over 7 times higher than email (45% compared to 6%).
- 48% of Internet consumers said they would prefer to receive their loyalty-related messages via SMS.
- It takes the average person 90 seconds to respond to a text message.
Myth 3: Customers Are Bothered By SMS Marketing
Because text messages feel very personal, many people think that customers wouldn’t want to receive a text message from a company with an offer or promotion.
SMS marketing tends to be less intrusive than other marketing channels because they have to opt-in first before they receive any solicitations.
Also, because text messages are typically less than 160 characters, marketing messages are clear and concise. They can quickly scan the message and see if it’s going to have value for them and take action.
Many studies have shown that customers actually prefer the ease-of-use and direct access that they have with the brand.
- 75% of people wouldn’t mind receiving an SMS text message from a brand (after opt-in).
- More than 50% of customers prefer contacting support through text messaging compared to other channels.
- Appointment reminders via SMS can reduce missed appointments by 26%.
- 9 in 10 users who enroll in SMS loyalty programs feel like they gained value from it.
Myth 4: SMS Marketing is Costly
Many people avoid SMS marketing because they think it will be too time-consuming to use and that they will need special knowledge to use it.
However, SMS marketing is actually one of the most cost-effective channels that you can use. You don’t need any special technical knowledge and you don’t need to be a marketing expert.
Sending a message only costs a few pennies per subscriber. Those few pennies turn into more sales through coupon redemption, awareness of offers, and staying top-of-mind with your audience.
- Approximately 50% of consumers in the U.S. make direct purchases after receiving an SMS branded text/QR code/discount coupon.
- Applying SMS marketing techniques is predicted to contribute a 40% growth rate of revenues.
- Coupons delivered via SMS have redemption rates 10 times higher than those of printed coupons.
Many people invest in massive campaigns that never seem to deliver a great ROI. Instead, they could be investing in SMS marketing that has more predictable results related to their subscriber count.
Myth 5: SMS Marketing Only Allows for One-Way Communication
A lot of people also think that SMS marketing is a one-way communication. They think that you are just blasting messages out at your audience, and that they can’t reply.
We can’t speak for every SMS service, but at EZ Texting, we solved that problem with Textable Numbers.
When you have a Textable Number, your customers can reply to the messages that you send out. Their replies are rolled into EZ Chat so you can pick up the conversation.
Our clients use EZ Chat to improve customer service, personalize communication, and strategically target individual contacts.
- 80% of customers prefer text-based customer service over being forced to call in for help.
- 47% of consumers prefer native SMS to message businesses compared to 34% of consumers who prefer native SMS to message family and friends.
- 58% of consumers indicated they would view a business more positively if they offered SMS capabilities.
Myth 6: SMS Marketing is Also MMS Marketing
When it comes to MMS Marketing, there are two main myths floating around.
Myth #1: MMS is the Same as SMS
Many companies think that MMS is the same as SMS. While they both are a form of text message marketing, that’s where the similarities end.
Unlike SMS, MMS enables you to send text messages that contain rich content like animations, images, and short videos. It doesn’t require the end user to have any specific technology. If they can receive SMS, then they usually receive MMS messages at no additional cost to them. You could choose to send a link to the image or video through a standard SMS, but that would require the user to either view a webpage that had the content, or to download it to their device.
Myth #2: MMS is Expensive
When MMS technology first debuted, it was expensive. Customer’s phone plans either didn’t include MMS plans, or they charged an extra fee for each MMS message that you received or sent.
The technology was in its infancy and was more expensive, but that has changed drastically over the last several years.Now most phone plans include MMS messages and don’t treat them any differently than SMS messages.
From a marketing standpoint, the cost is slightly higher to send an MMS message, plus you have the time spent creating the graphical assets. However, when compared to other methods like paid ads and email marketing, the cost is typically going to be significantly lower and have a higher ROI.
- Avenue Retail’s MMS campaign generates 6,600% ROI and 97% open rate by offering shoppers a $5 coupon on their next purchase via MMS.
- ABC’s Pretty Little Liars used MMS messaging to capture over 100,000 phone numbers from their most loyal fans.
Our Team Helps You Separate Fact from Fiction
Like most things in the technology and marketing space, there are a lot of myths and misconceptions. It’s important to separate the facts from the fiction so you can make a good choice for your business.
Now that we’ve successfully cut through the myths and misconceptions surrounding SMS marketing, let’s take a look at some of the successful campaigns that our customers have launched.
Brian’s Place Restaurant created a VIP program for his text messages subscribers. They receive exclusive coupons, MMS messages with a photo of the catch-of-the-week, and invites to special events.
As a result:
- He’s had 40-70 people per week redeeming the coupon.
- He’s selling out of his fish special 3x faster.
- He has seen higher attendance at his events.
Domino’s Pizza in Charlotte, North Carolina, decided to use SMS marketing to target the college students near his store. He combined SMS messages with his Facebook group and advertisements in the stadium.
As a result:
- He was able to use SMS to grow his Facebook group members by 2,000.
- He added an additional 850 students to his SMS subscriber list.
- Over the course of an entire semester, he turned a $125 investment in text messages into hundreds of new orders.
If you want to get started with SMS marketing, our team here at EZ Texting can help you. Our experts are well-equipped to answer your questions and concerns and help guide you through every step of your text marketing journey.
We have helped more than 160,000 customers send over 4 billion messages. We have watched them do some pretty amazing things and have discovered the patterns that lead to success.
We compiled that knowledge into The 9-Step Roadmap to Mastering Text Message Marketing. Download your copy and start your journey towards text message mastery today.