By Gillian Hughes, VP of Corporate Sales, Veoo
The exponential growth of mobile in recent years, and the way it is now intrinsically linked to everyday business and consumer life, has seen it take centre stage in many marketing strategies to drive customer engagement.
Various statistics validate this approach, none more so than the recent Ofcom 2015 Communications Marketing Report, which showed that 66% of UK adults own a smartphone; up from 39% in 2012. More impressively, a staggering 90% of 16-24 year olds owned one, and with brands scrambling for ‘real time’ connection with customers, you can see why mobile has become the primary communication tool with which to reach them.
Today, there are upward of 3 million apps across Android and Apple, however marketers are largely pinning their hopes on common forms of outreach like email, display ads and social, and consequently they are forgetting, or neglecting, the benefits of one of the mainstays of mobile communication – the SMS.
The Benefits of SMS
Far from being an aging pre-Smartphone medium, did you know that 90% of text messages are opened and read within three minutes of delivery? Moreover, were you aware that SMS has a 19% Click-Through Rate compared to only 2% with email? Or, in a world where there are over 1 billion mobile phones, that SMS is still the most used feature on any mobile phone?
SMS is therefore incredibly widespread, and unlike mobile applications, it’s non-reliant on internet connection. Therefore, when other digital channels of communication like email fail, thus limiting the success of a particular campaign, SMS is still at liberty to reach its intended target.
As well as being widespread, SMS also has incredible flexibility and can be used for a multitude of purposes, from delivery confirmation, appointment reminders, product activation facilitation or even customer engagement through real-time inquiries about products. Moreover, SMS provides marketers with the freedom and functionality to deploy any number of campaigns inclusive of: welcome, transactional promotional, triggered, loyalty etc.
In fact, with this very Expo in mind, SMS would be a fantastic tool for sending notifications to attendees with event highlights, to advise of amendments to conference schedules or to notify attendees when a particular talk is about to take place.
With marketing budgets being squeezed annually, it is essential that every channel used has clear benefits and a tangible return on investment and ROI can be clearly tracked through SMS. By imbedding a URL within your SMS it is relatively easy to track what recipients have clicked through the conversion path and therefore ascertain how effective the communication was.
The key priority for marketers is to create an effective SMS campaign that complements their overall marketing strategy and drives measureable results.