3 basic rules for incorporating SMS into your marketing campaigns

SMS, or short message service, is text messaging. Harnessing this popular form of communication for marketing is an emerging way to engage with customers, but done wrong it can come across as intrusive and unwelcome. Striking the right balance is key to realising success with SMS.

If you’re looking for more detailed insight into incorporating SMS into your marketing campaigns – join us at Mobilise Your Marketing Forum on Wednesday 18 November. We have rallied some of Sydney’s elite mobility and customer experience experts to share their insights and deep knowledge on the five most essential aspects of mobile marketing – FIND OUT MORE.

Here are three basic rules to follow to ensure success with SMS:

  1. Leverage SMS as a supplementary channel

    SMS is best approached as a mobile-friendly communication channel that can supplement your other digital marketing efforts. Adding SMS to your mix of communication methods can increase the reach and relevance of your marketing messaging. “Nearly 100% of all devices on the market are SMS enabled, making it the mobile channel that offers the widest reach possible.” (1) The incredible reach of this platform makes it a useful way to ask users to engage with your campaign (for example, Text FREEBIE to #123123 for BOGO offers). This extensive reach also makes texting a great way to increase engagement with other channels. Offering short previews to future emails or new releases can build momentum early and boost engagement for another communication method.

  2. Keep it short and sweet

    Another important strength of SMS is its immediacy. People carry their phones with them everywhere now; “over 90% of SMS messages are read within 3 minutes of receipt.” (1) You can reasonably assume that most outbound texts will be read immediately, so capitalise on that. Use SMS in situations where timing is crucial, a deadline is approaching, or you have a limited time offer. On the subject of timing, you should also be cognisant of the fact that mobile users are often multitasking or in situations with lots of distractions and little free time, so be concise. Save your longer information for a different marketing channel like email or link to the longer content so readers can choose to read it at their own discretion.

  3. Be honest and upfront

    SMS is also a comparatively intimate form of communication because phones are carried almost everywhere. Combine that with the fact that phones have evolved as a way to keep in contact with friends and family and you have a recipe for building trust… or the opposite.

    Let recipients know what to expect from your organisation when they opt-in. This prevents any misconceptions and they know upfront what they will get. This is somewhat similar to a newsletter opt-in, and should include the legally required information in addition to your average messaging frequency and what it will be about (for example: special offers, flash sales, exclusive deals). Purchase details (like a confirmation or shipping update) are great candidates for SMS because they keep the customer updated and a person would want to be kept aware of information on something that has already been purchased. By setting expectations in the beginning, you will build trust with recipients so your future communication is received positively.

Leveraging the unique strengths of SMS is key to incorporating texting into your marketing campaigns. Just like building any other campaign decide which methods of communication will have the greatest impact for your desired results. If there is a situation where you need extensive reach, there is a limited time offer (e.g. 20% off tomorrow only), or you want to send a quick reminder, SMS is a great supplementary option.

If you would like to know more about incorporating SMS into your mobile marketing strategy contact us today.

SOURCES

http://www.convinceandconvert.com/mobile/10-keys-to-a-successful-sms-marketing-campaign/

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Best practices for designing mobile email templates

“45% of 2015 email opens occurred on a mobile device.” (1) This number will only continue to grow, so it’s critical that all email campaigns moving forward are optimised for viewing on a mobile device. The key to designing for mobile is all about convenience. Every decision you make while designing an email should focus on making it easy for the reader to absorb the information within it as quickly and efficiently as possible.

If you’re looking to really nail your mobile customer experience – join us at Mobilise Your Marketing Forum on Wednesday 18 November. We have rallied some of Sydney’s elite mobility and customer experience experts to share their insights and deep knowledge on the five most essential aspects of mobile marketing – FIND OUT MORE.

Consider these 5 aspects to ensure your are designing best practice mobile email templates:

  1. Mobile screens are small.
    Their small size is the very aspect that makes it so convenient for users to carry a phone at all times, so think of it as a blessing instead of as a curse. To accommodate the smaller screen size you should limit the number of elements you use so there is more room for what is really important:
    – Small images – Be mindful that any images you do choose to keep are the smallest file size possible (for various load times) and that they maintain their meaning at a reduced size.
    – Short, snappy content – Your email content is the true priority, so emphasize the content. To do this you can increase the font size so it is easier to read, and shorten the overall length of your email so it is more likely to get read to the end.
    – Clickable call-to-action (CTA) buttons –
    On a similar note, any links or CTA buttons should be “finger friendly”, meaning there should be enough white space around these elements that they can be successfully clicked on with a large finger.
  2. People on their phones are often easily distracted and have shorter attention spans.
    Since mobile devices are often being used in distracting situations while the user is multitasking or on-the-go, modify your emails to account for this. Make your content scannable by using shorter sentences and bold words to highlight the important takeaways. This ensures your key points are easy to digest. It’s also mobility best practice to include CTAs at multiple points throughout the email – at the beginning, middle, and end – so customers don’t have to scroll too much to take action.
  3. Subject lines are still critical
    Email subject lines are always important. They often determine whether recipients will open the email at all. With mobile, even fewer characters are displayed in the preview so shorter subject lines are key. Shorter subject lines (4 – 15 characters) achieved higher open rates in a study by MailerMailer. (2)
  4. Responsive templates are the way to go
    The most efficient way to ensure your emails are optimised for mobile is to use responsive templates. It’s helpful to pre-build a small range of different templates. This way you don’t have to wait for a new email design to launch your campaign. Responsive design is the best way to accommodate changing screen sizes because it dynamically determines what gets displayed based on the size of the screen being used. This prevents templates from becoming obsolete as new devices with different size screens emerge.
  5. Better, faster, stronger Think strategically about mobile users. They are viewing your emails from a smaller screen on a portable device as they go about their day. If they were sitting at their desk with plenty of time to spare, they are more likely to be on their computer not their phone. So, planning emails for the time-poor, easily distracted mobile user is the best approach. By accommodating the unique needs of mobile users, you can ensure your emails will remain relevant to an audience that expects it.

If you would like to know more about designing best practice mobile email templates contact us today.

SOURCES

http://www.emailmonday.com/mobile-email-usage-statistics#optimization https://www.mailermailer.com/resources/metrics/2013/subject-lines.rwp

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Checklist: digital marketing for mobile devices – how does your strategy measure up?

As the number of mobile users continues to grow, adopting a mobile-first approach needs to be a top priority. You need to plan for the unique characteristics of mobile users. Fortunately, there are a myriad of ways digital marketers can incorporate mobile strategy into their digital marketing plans.

We’ve put together a list so you can assess your digital marketing. How mobile is it? How could you build in new elements to become more mobile-friendly?

Mobile Marketing Checklist: which of the following do you currently use?

  • SMS
  • Responsive design, including:
    • Landing pages
    • Forms
    • Website
    • Emails
  • Geotargeting
  • Push notifications
  • Mobile application
  • Analytics that show if a lead is on a mobile device

Responsive design is broken down into several categories that include landing pages, forms, your website, and marketing emails. This is because it’s possible to have mobile-friendly design for only some of those. While an incremental or phased approach to responsive design might seem to make sense short-term, in the long-term it might hamper your mobile-marketing efforts. For example, if the CTA in your mobile-friendly email links to a landing page that is difficult to read or access on a mobile device you will confuse and likely lose many mobile customers.

On the other hand, adopting all of the above listed elements won’t make sense for every organisation. For example, not every company needs to have a mobile application, and geotargeting tends to work well in very specific instances. Instead, think of this list as a compilation of possibilities within digital marketing for mobile devices.

There is a whole spectrum of uses associated with each item on the list, and opportunities to use some are more abundant than others. Assess your own digital marketing efforts to find out where your mobile strategy is weak and how you can improve on those areas.

Taking a mobile-first approach to your marketing strategy not only ensures your messaging can reach mobile users; it offers new opportunities for communicating with an audience where relevance reigns supreme. If you would like some help with ticking off your mobile marketing checklist, contact us today.

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Engage Digital partners with Gigya, the global leader in customer identity management and access management

Gigya and Engage Digital announce partnership

Today Engage Digital (a MicroChannel company) is proud to announce we have become an official channel partner in Australia and the Asia Pacific region for Gigya, the Leader in Customer Identity Management.

The partnership with Gigya builds on our philosophy of offering a range of specialist solutions to customer’s and adds to our impressive solution portfolio.

I am personally excited as are the team to be partnering with a great company like Gigya that is leading the way in customer identity management and is helping brands connect with their customers more effectively to gather insights that help with conversion, growth and retention.

Gigya’s Customer Identity Management Platform helps companies build better customer relationships by turning unknown site visitors into known, loyal and engaged customers. With Gigya’s technology, businesses increase registrations and identify customers across devices, consolidate data into rich customer profiles and provide better service, products and experiences by integrating data into marketing and service applications.

Gigya’s platform was designed from the ground up for social identities, mobile devices, consumer privacy and modern marketing. Gigya provides developers with the APIs they need to easily build and maintain secure and scalable registration, authentication, profile management, data analytics and third-party integrations.

And Gigya is world proven with more than 700 of the world’s leading businesses such as Fox, Forbes and Verizon rely on Gigya to build identity-driven relationships and to provide scalable, secure Customer Identity Management.

If you’d like to learn more how Gigya can help your business and complement existing marketing technologies please contact us or download the Gigya Whitepaper – Why Identity Management is at the Heart of the Internet of Things.

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What can great digital marketing for mobile achieve?

Digital marketing campaigns that find ways to integrate mobile beyond responsive design can create opportunities for more relevant communication. By embracing a variety of communication methods including mobile, social and email, marketers increase the chances that their messaging will resonate.

Bridgevine

Text messaging has a sense of immediacy and trust that is rivaled by few other communication methods. Bridgevine, a reseller for cable and telecommunications companies, leveraged those characteristics to promote new sign ups without being invasive or intrusive.

Bridgevine was seeing a lack of conversions within their B2C customer base. Once a customer expresses interest, they need to schedule an installation appointment, which many were not doing. To combat this issue and drive conversions, the marketing team used Silverpop to create a new, multichannel marketing campaign that combined email with SMS. Customers were reminded to schedule an installation appointment via an automatically triggered SMS and email immediately after they submit an interest form.

“The program, which began at the end of February 2014, has resulted in a 300 percent increase in conversions, with a call-back rate of 33 percent! More than 30 percent of the prospects who provided their email addresses also opted in to the SMS program. SMS is the primary conversion channel, with a call-back rate of 27 percent.” (1)

Teletext Holidays

Understanding your customer base is always important, but by reexamining theirs and thinking more critically about how to reach them in a more relevant way, Teletext Holidays was able to create a campaign that met its goals significantly sooner than expected.

Teletext Holidays is a popular, UK-based source for booking affordable, last-minute holidays. The company launched a campaign to double its customer database and reach a new set of people which successfully met that goal 6 months ahead of schedule. One key element of their campaign strategy was to optimise all their web forms for mobile devices. This was particularly important for their travel-loving customers because it provided a way for them to easily communicate on the go with their phones and tablets. (2) By using forms that were quick and easy to fill out using a mobile device, Teletext Holidays made it simple for their prospective customers to fill out those forms. This is a good example of a small change that had a big impact.

Santander Consumer USA

Reminders tend to be excellent candidates for SMS messaging because customers expect them, find them helpful, and can choose to sign up for them. Santander Consumer USA is an automobile finance company that wanted to reduce the number of calls to their call center. To do this, they implemented some automated processes that included proactively highlighting FAQs, sending emails with relevant information to customers, and offering automatic payment reminders.

Before they even offered SMS reminders, they included an opt-in preference for SMS notifications. According to their Director of Marketing, Will Stacy, “We had thousands of customers sign up for SMS payment reminders as soon as we made it available. It’s obvious that SMS is the next step in optimizing communications with our customers.” In addition, Stacy says “We have had positive results incorporating a multi-channel approach using both SMS and e-mail reminders. Our initial results show that for those customers that receive a SMS reminder, 15 percent will post a payment immediately, ensuring that customers have a higher propensity to pay if they are reminded via SMS in conjunction with e-mail.” (3) By offering an opt-in for SMS notifications before that was even available, Santander knew there was demand for a multi-channel approach before beginning it.

BNP Paribas

A poor mobile application rating is bad for business, so to combat this BNP Paribas improved their app and developed a campaign to convince existing users to update to the new version and review it.

BNP Paribas is a major bank in the euro zone and the fourth largest bank in the world. They wanted to increase the amount of people who used their mobile banking app, encourage users to update older versions of the app and also incentivise more positive reviews of it. To accomplish this, they implemented a series of push notifications to various segments of their user base. “App updates were promoted by displaying in-app interstitials introducing users to the key new features of the latest app version, with a call to action redirecting to the app store page. It also broadcast in-app pop-up messages asking frequent and loyal users to rate the app in the stores.” Mobile app users were actively using their mobile phones to interact with the company, so it made sense to focus on mobile-specific methods of communication with this user base.

“The app was a huge success, with a faster app update rate by users targeted with interstitials. Following the launch of the app, there was a 60% App Store rating increase from a 2.5 rating to 4 stars” (4)

Conclusion

Each of the companies above successfully integrated mobile-friendly aspects into their digital marketing campaigns. By thinking strategically about how to interact with the increasingly important always-on customer demographic, these marketers were able to build successful and effective mobile marketing campaigns that directly and measurably impacted revenue growth.

SOURCES

  1. http://www.silverpop.com/Clients/Silverpop-Case-Studies/bridgevine/
  2. http://www.silverpop.com/Clients/Silverpop-Case-Studies/Teletext-Holidays/
  3. http://www.silverpop.com/Clients/Silverpop-Case-Studies/Santander-Consumer-USA/
  4. http://www.digitaltrainingacademy.com/casestudies/2015/05/mobile_crm_case_study_how_paribas_used_push_notifications_to_boost_mobile_presence.php

If you would like to know more about how to integrate mobile into your digital marketing campaigns contact us today.

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  • Brand Identity

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    14/213 Miller St North Sydney
    NSW 2060