A mass texting app is a browser-based software application that is used by thousands of businesses and organizations to send SMS text messages to large groups of people simultaneously. As a marketing tool, a mass text messaging app is one of the most effective ways of being heard above other forms of direct marketing, though there are many other valuable uses for a mass texting app as well.
Faith-based organizations use a mass text message app to connect with their congregations. Political parties send mass texts to their supporters to rally them and encourage them to vote on Election Day. Schools, employers and even football teams find a mass texting app is an effective means of communicating quickly, easily and inexpensively with large groups of people simultaneously.
This article explores why mass text messaging is so effective, explains how a mass text messaging app works, and provides information on what you should look for in the best mass texting service apps to achieve the maximum impact when you send text messages in bulk. Contact details for further information and free advice can be found at the top of the page.
Why is Mass Text Messaging so Effective?
Mass text messaging is considered to be an effective way to contact large groups of people quickly for many different reasons. Reach, simplicity and cost are the three advantages of mass text messaging most frequently quoted, but SMS texting also has the advantages of being immediate and intimate. People tend to reach for their cellphones as soon as they hear the ringtone of an incoming message.
Despite smartphone ownership almost doubling in the past five years, there are still many more people who rely on their older-model cellphones to communicate. SMS text messaging reaches 98% of the population compared to smartphone apps that only reach the 68% of the population that own smartphones. Consequently, any campaign run without consideration of cellphone users excludes 30% of the population.
SMS texting is a channel of communication that most people are familiar with. You do not have to have any special technical skills to send or reply to a text message, which is why text messaging remains the most popular form of communication over email, Instant Messaging (IM) and social media. It is also a very inexpensive channel of communication - costing just pennies per contact.
How a Mass Text Messaging App Works
In order to send mass text messages, you first have to subscribe to a bulk texting service. The service provider assigns you a username and password that you use to log into the mass text messaging app. Once logged in, you simply upload a list of contacts, compose your message and click send. Within minutes, your contacts will be reading your message wherever they are, whatever they are doing.
As the mass texting app is a browser-based software application, you can follow the success of your campaign from any Internet-connected device. The mass texting app advises you of delivery rates, open rates and spikes in engagement so you can refine future text blasts to achieve a greater impact. All replies to your message are received by the mass texting app, and you have the option of having them forwarded to your personal mobile device by SMS.
The best mass texting app allows you to compose your messages in advance and schedule them to be sent at a time when they will have the greatest impact. This is a particularly useful feature for maximizing attendance at events or for time-sensitive marketing campaigns. The scheduling feature is also useful for planning and executing drip-feed campaigns.
Other Features of a Mass Texting App
One of the most useful features of a mass texting app is the ability to sort your contact list into groups. This gives you the option of sending text messages to only those contacts within your list for whom the message is relevant. It saves you money on “wasted” mass texting, and also prevents contacts from opting out of your text messaging service because they are receiving too many messages - or too many messages that are not of interest to them.
The best mass texting app also allows you to keep sent messages as templates for future use, saving you time in composing new messages and often helping to develop brand awareness. Other ways of maximizing the impact of your text messages include:
- Personalizing your text messages with recipients´ names.
- Adding audio, video or image multimedia files to your mass text blasts.
- Attaching digital coupons or QR codes to your messages to generate engagement.
Statistics relating to digital coupon redemption rates indicate that coupons sent from a mass texting app have a redemption rate up to eight times higher than coupons sent by email - and ten times higher than coupons in print media. What is often overlooked is the growth in coupon redemption. In 2015, 121.3 million Americans redeemed coupons - a growth rate of 5.2% over the previous year.
The Benefits of a Mass Texting App for Business
In addition to enabling retail organizations to take advantage of the growth in digital coupon redemption rates, a mass texting app for business offers many benefits. It has been reported that brands using a mass texting app for business to complement other forms of marketing reach 95% of their target audience - five times better than online advertising or inbound marketing.
It has also been reported that text messages containing URLs have a ten time higher click-through rate than emails containing URLs - an important consideration when attempting to attract the 15 - 25 year-old demographic. Also known as the “Text Generation”, this age group is considered to be one of the most valuable consumer demographics, yet one of the hardest to engage due to the volume of marketing targeting them.
One further benefit of a mass texting marketing app for business is that you do not have to employ marketing specialists in order to get your message heard. As mentioned above, people tend to reach for their cellphones as soon as they hear the ringtone for an incoming message, so you do not need to have a well-designed text message with a snappy title for your message to get noticed. People will read it anyway!
Other Uses of a Mass Text Message App
Some of the other uses for a mass text messaging app were provided earlier. Many people will have been exposed to mass texting other than retail marketing. For example, schools can communicate with their students, parents or faculty instantly with a mass text messaging app, either to advise of school events or to coordinate and inform in the event of an emergency.
Indeed, many companies advocate the use of mass texting in the event of an emergency as data networks often become overloaded. Employers can also use a mass text messaging app to communicate with groups of field-based employees who might be out of range of an Internet service, or to advise jobseekers of employment opportunities.
Non-profit organizations - including faith-based organizations - have found many uses for a mass text message app. Mass texting can be used to solicit donations or assistance for those in need, remind individual groups about forthcoming meetings, or to advise of meeting cancellations or last-minute changes of venue. Churches in particular have found that a mass text messaging app is a great way of engaging the community and developing relationships with youth members of their parishes.
Tools for Creating a Mass Texting Contact List
Because mass texting has the potential to be abused by spammers and hackers, it is a permission-based activity. This means that you cannot purchase a list of cellphone numbers and upload it into the mass text messaging app for subsequent outreach. Instead, you have to invite people to opt into your service. The most effective way of doing this is through keywords and short codes.
A keyword is usually a simple word that you ask prospective contacts to text to a short code number - for example, text “join” to 313131. Once they have opted into your text messaging service, the contacts´ details are automatically added to your mass texting contact list. You do not have to enter their details manually. Keywords and short codes can be obtained from your service provider and are usually rented by the month or included in a subscription package.
Other tools for creating a mass texting contact list include “click-to-join” widgets. These can be positioned on your website or Facebook page, or sent out to your social media followers in a Tweet. “Click-to-join” widgets can be used to best effect when they promise that customers who sign up for your service will be the first to know of special offers and promotional events.
Other Rules and Regulations Affecting Mass Text Messaging
Most of the other rules and regulations affecting mass text messaging are contained within the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991. The TCPA is overseen by the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) and prevents organizations from sending spam mass text messages or sending mass text messages too frequently. It also stipulates the rules for allowing customers to opt out of your service.
In addition to the TCPA, the Mobile Marketing Association has also published a “Code of Conduct”. The Code has been prepared with assistance from Microsoft, Yahoo and Verizon, and its primary purpose is to protect consumer privacy standards. Compliance with the TCPA and Code of Conduct is generally a question of common sense. If you bombard your contact list too frequently with material of no interest to them, they will quickly leave your mass texting service.
One final set of rules and regulations affecting mass text messaging are the guidelines issued by the Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA). These guidelines stipulate what material carriers consider inappropriate (violence, hate speech, profanity, the endorsement of illegal activity) and will result in the non-delivery of your text messages and possibly a ban by your service provider.
How to Generate Engagement with a Mass Text Message App
Mass text messaging achieves a lot more than simply getting your message noticed ahead of other direct marketing activities. A mass text message app can also be used as a tool to encourage feedback, generate engagement, and develop relationships. One of the best ways of achieving these targets is to include a poll in your text message and invite your contacts to express their opinions.
Polls are easy to compile using the mass text message app. You simply write a question in the body of your text message and ask your contacts to reply using a keyword that represents their opinion. An example of generating engagement with a mass text message app would be to ask what flavor ice cream your contacts prefer, and invite them to text “chocolate”, “strawberry” or “vanilla” to 313131.
Your contacts´ responses are collated within the mass texting app. Including fun or thought-provoking questions in your polls can have a positive impact on the size of your contact list. People often share media they find interesting and - if your poll stimulates a discussion among families, friends and colleagues - your mass text messages could encourage many more people to sign up for your service.
Mass Texting App Free Advice
If you would like further information about how a mass text messaging app works, how your business could benefit from using a mass text marketing app, or how you can build a contact list for the mass texting app, free advice is available from our team of Client Success Managers. Our team will also be able to guide you through the rules and regulations governing mass text messaging, and how to generate engagement with a mass text message app to encourage feedback and develop relationships.