SMS Text Marketing Blog

SMS Research Around the World

Wed, 01/15/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

The power of SMS is now being used to research the tastes and opinions of people who are usually unreachable through other communications channels. Developing countries, for instance, with no optic fiber or landlines, no web access or even telephones, still have mobile phone capabilities. Mobile marketing companies and charity organizations alike are trying to use SMS to reach those outliers on the global grid.

Denver-based Mobile Accord has launched a new venture called GeoPoll, which performs surveys on behalf of non-profits, international organizations like the U.N. and the mobile marketing strategies of big business. Participants are compensated with airtime credits which, in many countries, can be used as a currency. GeoPoll plans to extend its current reach of 50 million to 500 million by the end of 2014.

GeoPoll doesn’t require an app or internet connection – everything can be done via SMS. In areas with low literacy, it can conduct surveys orally with a voice prompt. But how is this project being used to help people?

Well, a poll might be conducted on the quality of infrastructure in remote villages, and that data used to influence aid…

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Major Mobile Carriers Stop Premium SMS Billing

Tue, 01/14/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

The Big Four U.S. mobile carriers have announced they will stop billing customers for the majority of premium text messages. AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have signed an agreement with the Vermont Attorney General’s office, and Verizon has promised to discontinue the practice. All four companies accept that these services have become a gateway for fraudulent activity.

The move aims to end ‘cramming’, the term for bills tied to unauthorized third-party services. Forty-four states have followed Vermont’s example, including Delaware, Florida, Maryland and Oregon. Vermont’s Attorney General Bill Sorrell said unauthorized third party services offered through premium SMS "accounts for the majority of third-party charges on cell phones and for the overwhelming majority of cramming complaints."

Sorrell went on to say:

"This is a victory for cell phone users in Vermont and across the nation. While SMS has some benefits, like charitable giving, it is also a major contributor to the current mobile cramming problem. We are pleased that AT&T, Sprint and T-Mobile have decided to stop the flow of money from the pockets of ordinary people to the bank…

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Google’s Hangout App Now Supports SMS

Tue, 01/14/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

Android’s Google Hangouts app has added text capabilities that promise to be a real boon for SMS marketing managers. Recently-leaked images indicate a few changes to the app, but the real game-changer is the ability to send texts without switching to another program.

In addition to sending text messages, the Hangouts app will be able to share user’s locations and display animated GIFs – all within the confines of the same screen.

The move, which will bring Hangouts into line with the version available on the Nexus 5, was announced at a Google+ event in October. For the most part, the texting experience remains the same, with SMS conversations displayed on a list alongside other conversations. Users can switch between the two channels as they choose.

The update was pre-empted by Apple, whose latest iOS bagged the GIF capability as well as allowing users to make Google Voice calls over a data network.

It’s the SMS support that will be of real use to anyone developing mobile marketing strategies for 2014. Those who adopt SMS technology early, and can incorporate it into their existing apps, will steal a march on their competitors. As…

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SMS Text Marketing for Small Business Success

Mon, 01/13/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

There’s nothing like the thrill of starting a new business. You invest time and money to open your doors in the hopes of building your brand, carving out a niche for your products in the global marketplace and becoming a successful entrepreneur. Savvy businesspeople understand the need to stay abreast of cutting-edge marketing trends and technological advances in order to catapult their company to profitability.

SMS text marketing for small b

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SMS Texting Can Aid in Disaster Response Efforts

Mon, 01/13/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

When disaster strikes a country, people spring into action to help. SMS texting can aid in disaster response e

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Schools Find Creative Ways to Use SMS for Updates

Sun, 01/12/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

Too often, mobile marketing practices are associated solely with retailers and other businesses who use the types of service offered by the likes of EZ Texting to promote special offers and issue reminders, ignoring that there are many creative ways to use SMS for updates.  SMS marketing can be used for more edifying purposes than mere commerce.

Local and national governments already rely on texting to communicate with staff and voters. SMS allows them to streamline their communication process and keep people tuned in to the latest events. Now, schools and colleges all over the world have followed suit. Educational institutions are signing up to mobile marketing programs that help them improve the lines of communication between students and staff. In the process, they are creating a new culture of applying cutting-edge technology to a civic context.

A typical application of SMS in schools is notifying parents of a school closure due to extreme weather. Another use is minimizing truancy by sending texts to the parents of absent children. Other schools are using mobile marketing strategies to inform pupils of upcoming events.

In Scotland, Fife…

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Growth in Mobile Spurs Growth in Mobile Search

Sun, 01/12/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

The expanding mobile device market has led to a dramatic increase in mobile search of web activity. According to Phil Harpur of Frost & Sullivan:

“Search results from mobile searches are becoming more distinct to fixed internet searches, with a high proportion of mobile searches optimized for location based material. Also, click-to-call features are becoming more prominent in mobile search advertising.”

Despite the growth in mobile-specific search, desktop searches have not decreased, which means search advertising as a whole is still booming. However, the search industry expects to continue leaving online directories for dust, and mobile search is increasingly coming to the fore, as mobile marketing strategies become more sophisticated and user-oriented. Google predicts that mobile search will overtake desktop during the next few years.

Countless studies and surveys support Google's prediction. Mobile search spending went up 132% year on year, according to a Covario report. On a global basis, mobile search advertising accounted for 16% of total spend in the second quarter of 2013, with 10% of that spending conducted on tablets, and 6%…

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The Dos and Don’ts of Text Message Marketing

Sat, 01/11/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

With a staggeringly high open-and-read rate, SMS is the single best tool in any text message marketing campaign manager's box. It affords them the opportunity to build a one-on-one relationship with customers, gathering crucial personal data that can help them create more targeted mobile marketing strategies. But the power supplied by SMS comes with a responsibility attached. This post explains how to balance successful returns with mobile marketing privacy obligations:

Do have a strong call to action. There's no point investing in a mobile marketing campaign if your audience doesn't understand what they're supposed to do with your message. Define a clear call to action as your first order of business, and make sure you offer relevant content to boost customer engagement and, ultimately, opt-in retention rates.

Don’t try to say too much in one message. Mobile marketers are looking to emulate Twitter's success in promoting concise, pithy content bound by character limitations. If you have multiple offers in the pipeline, spread them…

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Mobile Marketing and Consumer Privacy

Sat, 01/11/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

The boom in targeted advertising for mobile devices has brought with it a new set of customers concerns about privacy and ethics. Mobile data collection frequently includes location-based information, with some apps requiring access to users’ GPS co-ordinates. Others ask for contact lists or directory information. While the huge leaps made by mobile marketing strategies[BC1]  often serve the convenience of the customer, it also puts a greater responsibility on companies to be transparent about their use of personal data.

Earlier this year, two advertising regulators introduced new guidelines for app developers, designed to keep mobile marketing trends within ethical boundaries. The Digital Advertising Alliance and the Network Advertising Initiative announced their intention to address how marketers notify users when they collect data via mobile apps.

The Digital Advertising Alliance now requires its members to present users with a standard notice if they intend to use mobile data for advertising purposes. The move will allow users to choose whether…

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How to Choose Your SMS Coupon Code

Fri, 01/10/2014 - 00:00 — EZ Texting

Many marketers have no idea where to start when devising an SMS campaign much less how to choose an SMS coupon code for coupons to offer your customers. There are all sorts of ways you can present SMS coupons, so it’s necessary to establish which format your customers prefer. It may differ from customer to customer, or there may be an industry-specific best practice. 

A recent Cellit survey found that buy-one-get-one mobile coupons were clearly more popular amongst young consumers, with 68% of them preferring this type of coupon. Offering a straight-up freebie with a purchase, then, is clearly more effective than a percentage discount.

But there is more to consider than the type of discount you offer. Formatting mobile coupons so they are useful to – and welcomed by – your audience can improve your ROI immeasurably. 

Firstly, keep your message brief. When crafting it, ensure the message is as succinct as possible, while also making sure the customer has all the instructions on how to use coupon codes to redeem goods. Use personal language, avoiding jargon at all costs. Slang and sales-speak sticks out a mile – especially to tech-savvy young…

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