Text Message Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

Oops. Mistakes in text message marketing

Ready to start your first text message marketing campaign? Great! Make sure you don’t derail your campaign with these newbie mistakes.

Text messaging mistakes to avoid…

1. Texting during off-peak hours

You might want your text to be the first thing your subscribers see when they wake up. Sounds good, right? But you could be making a huge mistake. As a general rule, you should never send text messages before 9 am or after 9 pm (in the recipient’s time zone). If you do, they can report you and you may be fined. Set up a schedule for your text messages instead, so customers know when they can expect to receive messages from your company. Consistency will improve your campaign results.

2. Not using an incentive

Offering an incentive is the best way to get your subscribers to respond or enter. A great incentive is a text-to-win sweepstakes. It works so well in fact, we encourage all clients to use one to build their lists. Because who wouldn’t want to win a prize? You should always include an incentive to get users to respond as quickly as possible. 

3. Forgetting to include redemption instructions

Don’t assume that customers will automatically know how to take advantage of your offer. Make things easy for them by including the instructions in your text message. Something as simple “show this text” or “use coupon code xyz” can dramatically increase your redemption rates. 

4. Leaving out legally required information

Many newbies to text message marketing don’t quite understand the legal requirements of sending text messages to subscribers. In fact, there are very serious consequences if you don’t follow the rules. You can be fined up to $1,500 per text! All subscribers must opt-in on their own, for example, and you must include “Text STOP to end” in all texts. Read our post on the rules of text message marketing for other requirements and make sure you follow them to avoid any violations.

Following these tips will help you get your SMS campaign off to a good start. You’ll make things easier for your customers and avoid the common mistakes that can derail your campaign.

Reach your audience with a Text-to-Win or SMS Sweepstakes campaign. Contact us or call us at (305) 505-­­5393 for help with setting up your (SMS) text message marketing.

Using Mobile Keywords to Brand Your Business

Branding With Mobile Keywords

Are you familiar with mobile keywords? It’s a term that may not be familiar, but mobile keywords are extremely important for the success of your text-to-win campaign. Here’s a breakdown of how you can use them to brand your business when texting.

First, What Are Mobile or SMS Keywords?

A mobile keyword, also called an SMS keyword, is a short word with letters and/or numbers that is sent in a text message to a short code (a 5-digit phone number). It not only brands and identifies your business, it also triggers a response from the mobile texting platform.

For example, let’s say the keyword for your business is TYKETOYS. To signup, a subscriber would text your keyword (TYKETOYS) to our short code, which is 65047. They would then get an automatic return text confirming their subscription.

This keyword also brands and identifies your business when you send out text messages, since each message is prefaced with your keyword.

Here’s an example of a message: “TYKETOYS: Make the most of spring with our outdoor toys! Get 15% off with coupon code SPRING15.”

Keywords serve a dual purpose: to allow someone to subscribe or opt-in automatically and to identify your business.

Choosing Mobile Keywords

You won’t be able to change your keyword easily, so it’s best to choose one carefully. Any changes to the keyword could cause confusion and derail your campaign.

Keep these tips in mind when you select mobile keywords for your text-to-win:

  1. Make the keyword easy to remember by relating it to your business name or product.
  2. Make sure the keyword is as short as possible and one word only (no spaces).
  3. Use proper spelling and don’t try to invent new words.
  4. Avoid special characters, including symbols.

Promote Your Branded Keyword

Once you’ve chosen the right keyword, why not use it to promote your brand and your sweepstakes? Here are a few ways to promote your campaign and your business with your mobile keyword:

  • Print it on promotional items and apparel. For a creative push and fashionable branding, feature your mobile keyword on t-shirts, baseball caps, apparel and promotional. Think of them as conversation starters that can attract new customers to your text-to-win.
  • Do you have company vehicles? Brand them with not only your logo and information, but with your keyword as well. Used this way, your keyword will be truly mobile and can be another avenue to increase subscribers.
  • Online promotion via social media and video. Promote your mobile keywords online via multiple channels, such as social media and digital video advertising. The best way to boost participation is to make sure your message is seen by as many people as possible.

Using mobile keywords to brand your business is a simple way to increase the effectiveness of a text-to-win campaign. Getting new subscribers and potential customers into your pipeline is the ultimate reward for using mobile keywords!

Reserve your mobile keyword today to get started with a text-to-win campaign. Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help.

How to Promote Your Mobile Campaigns on Social Media

How to promote your mobile marketing campaigns on social.

Whether you’re offering Text 2 Win prizes, mobile coupons or other offers, your campaigns will only succeed as long as you keep promoting them.

We see many clients promoting their campaigns once or twice, then letting them fall off the radar. Are you doing the same? If so, you’re losing opportunities to get new subscribers!  Be consistent about reminding your fans/followers of your text message offers.

Read on for tips on promoting your mobile offers, in some cases on auto pilot.

Promoting (and Scheduling) on Facebook

It’s a no-brainer to promote your campaigns when they launch. But how do you keep it going consistently? Schedule those posts.

Did you know you can schedule posts within Facebook? You can schedule a post to run each week. Here’s how…

1. Enter your text and upload your photo in the post box on your Facebook page. Then, instead of clicking “Publish,” click the down arrow right next to it and select “Schedule.”

How to schedule your mobile promotion on Facebook.

2. Choose the date and time you’d like it to post on Facebook and click “Schedule.”

Scheduling your mobile marketing post on Facebook.

3. Facebook will confirm it has been scheduled. You can see all of your scheduled posts by clicking “Publishing Tools” at the top menu of your Facebook page and “Scheduled Posts” on the left.

A confirmation of your scheduled post on Facebook.

4. Your post will appear at the scheduled time. Make sure to interact with any fans who respond!

Scheduled post on Facebook.

Remember to include your call-to-action. A photo or visual will also help get attention.

Other Networks & Tools

For Twitter we recommend scheduling a message to run once every day or two (at different times).  If you’re posting on LinkedIn, we suggest 2 times a week while the campaign is running.

You can also schedule posts with apps like TwitTimer or Hootsuite.

Using Mobile Marketing to Promote a Gym or Fitness Center

Mobile marketing for gyms

At the start of every year, people sign up at the gym hoping to make a change for the better. Unfortunately, many don’t keep that commitment all year long.

For fitness centers and gyms, getting customers to keep their membership over the long term is a big problem. Fortunately, mobile marketing can help keep customers motivated and coming back.

Here are a few ways to use mobile marketing to promote a fitness center or gym:

Retain & Engage Current Members

It’s a known business adage that it’s less expensive to retain existing customers than to acquire new ones. Text messaging is a way to increase “touchpoints” with your customers and keep them engaged. Text your members once a week with updates, motivational messages, promotions or offers to keep them coming back.

You can also segment your subscriber list and reach out to subgroups of members. Want to send different updates to those interested in yoga vs. spinning, for example? You can. With segmented lists, you can reach out to different customer groups, based on the data you have on their fitness interests.

Create Workout Notifications

You can also use mobile marketing to send out workout notifications to members who enroll in certain types of classes or training at your gym. These notifications can include reminders about upcoming classes or tips for staying in shape between classes.

Notify Members of Last-Minute Changes

If an instructor is sick and won’t be able to teach class, send a text to let members know. Text messaging is a better option for alerts, which your members are likely to check more frequently than email. This will improve notifications of scheduling changes and will also make your gym seem more organized.

Alert Members When the Gym is Less Crowded

Everyone hates going to the gym when it’s super crowded. If you want to get more people in during slow times, why not send alerts when the gym is free? You can also schedule messages about holiday hours or changes. Sending out messages at the right time can create some buzz right when you need it.

Promote New Services

Mobile marketing is also a great way to promote new services and offers. Alert members about new classes, for example or offer specific services on certain days of the week. Promoting these via text will get the word out quickly and will help members feel like their taking full advantage of their membership.

Are you ready to get started with mobile marketing? Contact us or call (305) 505-5393 for help with setting up a mobile marketing program for a gym or fitness center.

How to Write Text Messages That Will Spark Action for Your Business

Text messages that cause action

In today’s world of increased drama online and off, it takes a little more something-something to get people to take action. And text message marketing is one way to get your customers to take the next step. (Of course, we’re talking about texts that users opt in to receive.)

If you plan to use mobile marketing to promote your business, make sure you maintain consistency and clarity.  Here are some tips:

Offer Value

One of the best ways to get attention is to make sure every text provides value. Customers love discounts, exclusive promotions and other offers. While you don’t have to give the store away, discounts provide a strong incentive for customers to engage with your mobile campaign.

Keep it Short & Sharp

Keep each message short and sharply focused. Text messages are limited to 160 characters anyway, so you don’t have much room. If you must abbreviate a few words, make sure it still looks professional (i.e. no text slang) and is very easy to understand.

Tell Them What to Do Next

It may seem obvious, but it’s best to give readers a nudge and tell them what to do next. By telling them what’s next (the “call to action”), you’re encouraging them to take that step. It’ll be easier for them to move forward in the buying process and redeem your offer, enter your contest, visit your store or call your business.

Text Frequently, But Not Too Frequently

You should decide early on how frequently you will text your customers. During the sign-up process, let them know how often they can expect text messages from your business. The frequency of messaging is important, because some subscribers may opt-out if you text too often. Whether your customer can buy from you as often as you text is also a good indication of how frequently you should send text messages. We usually recommend once a week, depending on the audience and campaign.

Make it Relevant

Make sure every message is relevant to your subscribers. For example, sending out messages about lunch specials in the afternoon or offering discounts on maternity clothing to a list that includes men aren’t likely to get huge responses. Consider the timing and the audience to ensure every message will appeal to readers.

Want to learn more about setting up a successful mobile campaign? Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help with setting up your (SMS) text message marketing.