Seize the Day: Texting Is to 2020 as Email Is to 2000
Twenty years ago, the average American worker received 30 emails every day, according to a 1999 Gallup poll. But even as it remains essential, email saturation and overload has become ubiquitous, leaving your messages languishing in promotion folders or spam inboxes.
And while texting is incredibly, and increasingly, popular — research suggests that 90% of consumers read and respond to text messages within 30 minutes — the medium is nowhere near as crowded as an email inbox. In other words, text marketing allows you to bypass clogged inboxes and reach your consumers where they are — on their phones.
So it's clear that texting is to 2020 as Email was to 2000. Here, why to adopt text marketing now — so you’re not kicking yourself down the road.
Is Text the New Email? Yes… and No
“Text is the new email” may be catchy, but it’s not necessarily accurate. Texting can be a superior method of communication to initiate interactions, raise immediate awareness, and provide engaging CTAs that can be completed in real time. The immediacy and ephemeral nature of text communications is it’s strong suit — people are encouraged to act now, rather than file away for “someday.”
Even as email marketing becomes more personalized and customized, email campaigns can get filed into an inbox abyss, becoming something that is excavated only when necessary. A customer may not open your email until they need a particular service. Text messaging has 6x the engagement of email, which means that your messages are sure to reach your customers in real time.
So use emojis. Share polls. Ask for feedback. And don’t be afraid to stand out. Emerging content brands, like The Nudge, are creating SMS-first platforms to connect with audiences. These brands are reminiscent of early 2000’s email darlings like DailyCandy. The result: An opportunity to be voicey, playful, and allow your brand to experiment with new opportunities to engage with consumers.
Text Meets The Needs of Your Customers
Even the most clever email marketing campaigns can get caught in spam filters — and can be deleted before a customer has a chance to see what you offer. But because texts from businesses are novel, they’re received differently. In fact, according to research by AT&T in 2016, 85% of people would prefer a text from a business, rather than a call or email. The same research found that consumers see a business as having a customer service text line as respectful of their time, progressive, and one they would recommend to others.
Early Adoption Gives You Time to Figure Out What Works
Catching up is more complicated and more expensive than slowing down. Email marketing has gone through multiple iterations in the last few decades, with necessary pivots after advancing legislation and emerging technology, such as HTML 5, which allowed for emails to include video, interactive graphics, and content that was visually engaging.
For example, MMS capabilities — embedding videos or providing customized graphics or interactive content into a text — offers similar possibilities to what email marketers envisioned with the widespread adoption ot HTML 5. MMS opportunities give you the chance to test what works and establish a strong brand voice before other brands adopt MMS marketing.
Text Messaging is Simple
While new communication apps spring up every day, people prefer to use their native text app versus other messaging services like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger. According to a survey by EZTexting, native text messaging is used three times more than Facebook messenger and 11 times more than Instagram.
Texts are also more likely to be reached by your intended recipient in a timely manner. Data suggests consumers have 2.5 email addresses, which may be a personal one, as well as a business address, or an address created specifically for promotions and marketing. But phone numbers tend to be more centralized and stable, giving you a line to your customer for years to come.
Bottom line: Text message campaigns shouldn’t replace email. But they can augment a successful email campaign strategy, grow a consumer base, and give you a seamless way to connect, engage, and delight in real time.