How to Send Automated Text Messages for Marketing
Wondering how to send automated text messages? It's easier and more effective than you might think.
Most marketers have already discovered that this kind of outbound marketing strategy is more powerful (by orders of magnitude) than other channels.
According to our recent survey about how people are really texting, text messages have an unbelievable 100% open rate, with 70% reading messages within five minutes and 90% reading within 30 minutes. Compare that to email marketing with an average open rate of 17%.
Text message marketing is also simpler than other channels.
You don't have to sit at your desk for hours writing and editing tedious blog posts. You don't have to come up with clever subject lines just to get people to open the message as you do with email. And you don't have to optimize content for some mysterious algorithm just to show up as you do with Facebook or Google.
In fact, you can actually get started with Short Message Service marketing in five easy steps. We'll show how to send automated text messages below and give you everything you need to get started.
How to Send Automated Text Messages in 5 Simple Steps
Sending automated text messages is as easy as signing up for a message service, uploading contacts, launching opt-in campaigns, and creating and sending messages. You'll be up and running in no time.
1. Sign Up for an Automated Text Message Service
There are a lot of text messaging services out there, but EZ Texting is the largest and has been around the longest. You don’t need a credit card to sign up and take a look around, but if you really want to harness its full power to send bulk messages and personalize a Keyword, you should sign up for a plan. EZ Texting is an online software provider. That means that you just need an internet connection and browser to access the tool. EZ Texting does offer API integrations for enterprise clients, but it is not necessary for most small to medium-sized businesses that we serve.
2. Upload Your Opted-in Contacts
If you have a list of contacts that have said “yes” to receiving text messages, you can upload your list in a matter of minutes. To upload, browse for your contact file or drag your file into the page. To make it easier, we also have a contact list template you can download and a tutorial video you can watch. You do need explicit permission from contacts to send text messages to them. Having their phone number does not mean you have permission. They need to specifically say yes to texting!
Make sure you're sending the right message to the right people by using segmented contact groups for your campaigns. You can create as many groups as you like and put contacts into buckets based on demographics, purchase history, signup source, and more.
3. Build Your Text Marketing List with Keywords and Sign Up Forms
How do you get permission to text someone? The easiest way is by running a Keyword campaign. You’ve definitely seen signs around that say things like, “Text JOIN to 313131 to get more information.” In this example, JOIN is the Keyword and 313131 is the short code. Anyone who texts in to this short code is opting in to receive text messages. There are rules around how you introduce your texting program, and EZ Texting makes it easy to follow. Feel free to use our print form templates to advertise your Keyword.
Another way to grow your opt-in list is adding a form to your website or social media channels. EZ Texting provides customizable forms you can use for free.
4. Create Your Automated Text Message
EZ Texting provides an easy-to-use tool where you can type in your message and select recipients, or sub-groups from your list of contacts. You can select an industry-specific template from our message library or start from scratch. A preview of the text is updated in real-time in a side window so that you can see what your text will look like on a phone.
Use personalization tokens to automatically insert the contact's first name or other relevant information in a bulk text. If you’re interested in sending a photo message (MMS) you can also do that from the main screen.
5. Schedule and Send Automated Text Messages
When your message is ready, you can easily schedule the message to send in the future or send right away. You can even set the message to recur or set up a reminder campaign. There are a lot of powerful ways that you can use these recurring texts and reminders to boost your business and retain customers. Send recurring messages for monthly billing, birthdays, customer anniversaries, annual subscription renewals, special holiday menus etc. Reminder campaigns have been proven to drastically cut no-show rates for appointments and boost attendance for events.
Send Automated Text Messages Today
If you’ve wondered how to send automatic text messages, but aren’t sure where to begin, EZ Texting Customer Support Managers are ready to assist. We’ve helped countless organizations make the most out of our online text marketing software. Give us a call at (800) 753-5732 or check out our pricing plans now.