All articles

How SMS Marketing Is Helping Drive Serious Growth for Businesses Across Australia

26th
May
2022
Avatar
Clearwater Staff

When it comes to the latest digital marketing trends, it seems that we are always searching for the ‘next big thing’ – the new social media platform, or how we need to adjust to the latest Google algorithm update. Ironically, one of the highest performing campaign tactics has been right under our noses for years – literally.

The answer? An SMS marketing campaign.

Modern audiences have become accustomed to expecting targeted ads on their social media feeds, or flashing on the banners of websites – but when their phone pings after receiving a new text message, it is an immediate draw for their attention. And the reach is enormous – approximately 20.3 million (79.6%) Australians have a smartphone, meaning that when businesses perfect the balance between value, creativity and ethical messaging, a bulk SMS marketing campaign can prove highly effective for brands in a range of industries.

To cover more on how this channel can help businesses across Australia, our specialists at Clearwater have compiled a comprehensive breakdown of everything you need to know to get a better understanding of what an SMS marketing campaign is, the potential benefits, as well as why they are so effective, including some helpful examples, and suggestions on software and platforms.

 

What is an SMS Marketing Campaign?

Everyone with a phone will be intimately familiar with what SMS messaging is, but what is an SMS marketing campaign? Bulk SMS marketing is a digital channel that allows you to rapidly communicate your sales, promotions, news, updates and any other pertinent information related to your business to your customers.

How Effective is SMS Marketing?

 

Direct & Immediate Communications

A leading frustration for many marketers across Australia is spending so much time crafting the perfect digital marketing campaign, only to wait even longer for it to gain traction. One of the leading benefits of bulk SMS marketing campaigns, however, is that they are created, delivered, and opened near instantaneously, with the average delivery time for most carriers being well under 10 seconds.

This immediate form of communication can lend to a rapid uptake in action or conversion, especially when paired with time-sensitive offers or information.

 

(Extremely) High Open Rates

The open rate within Australia sits at roughly 94%, with 86% of those people reading their messages within the first 30 minutes! But why is SMS marketing so effective in terms of open rates? As mentioned above, there is a psychological element present with SMS marketing that other channels cannot readily leverage.

Social media, search engines, email marketing – these all have an existing consideration for marketing materials to be present. Although well-structured campaigns through these mediums still perform marvellously, when you learn how to start SMS marketing for your business, you also begin advertising through a communication channel reserved mostly for friends, family and so on. As such, normal branded materials and ads will need to be seen multiple times before an audience member is interested.

With SMS, it’s immediate, lending to that high 94% open rate.

 

Zero Spam Filters

As we briefly touched on above, email marketing – although still one of the leading channels in modern digital marketing campaigns – can still be blocked by a variety of spam filters. This means all the time, effort and investment you put into crafting your emails go straight to a folder that is cleared by users once a month without being read.

This battle to slip your emails past these filters does not exist with SMS marketing. Every message is delivered within seconds, ensuring an even higher open rate (with actual consideration).

 

Strong Conversion Rate & ROI

Breaking through the noise put forward by the campaigns of your competitors, or the spam filters for your email marketing campaigns, is the hard part. Another reason why an SMS marketing campaign is so effective is the high conversion rate once your audience’s attention has been received.

SMS messages can hold a higher degree of credibility, and only need to be short, sharp and to the point with a clear call-to-action (CTA) to gain some real traction. The simplicity is the defining factor, without a lot of different links or selling points to confuse the reader – just an alert, an offer, and a way for the reader to take advantage of it.

Click!

What’s more, depending on the SMS marketing platform or software you are using, this is extremely cost-effective and offers a far higher return on investment.

 

Personalisation Capabilities

Instead of the more formal, traditional and ‘sales-y’ type of language adopted in your marketing materials, don’t forget that with your SMS marketing campaigns, your communications are being sent directly to your subscribers’ personal inboxes. This means you can personalise your messages in a way that is more casual and friendly, while still being professional. After all, most people use text messaging to speak with their friends, so why should your brand be any different?

Doing this help businesses to build a personal relationship with their audience, further tailored and refined as the communication continues.

 

Builds Ongoing Brand Awareness

Naturally, your potential customers aren’t always going to be in the position to immediately purchase or engage in your offerings. It is therefore imperative that your brand awareness is strong enough so that when they are ready to convert, it is your business that springs to mind first.

Unfortunately, it can be time-consuming and costly to always have your sponsored posts, blog articles, emails, and ads flashing at your audience – or at least, it was before SMS marketing. We check our phones multiple times per day, so if you are sending consistent, value-driven messages that work to foster trust and loyalty within your audience, then they are far more likely to engage in the future. This doesn’t mean spamming messages every hour, or even every day, for that matter. One message a week might prove ample; you simply need to find a rhythm that works best for your business.

 

Rapid Customer Feedback

While you can also receive faster conversions with this platform, bulk SMS marketing can also help deliver benefits to businesses in the form of direct feedback. Within your campaign, you can easily invite your audience to complete surveys or take part in simple polls, perhaps with small incentives attached, to achieve quick feedback on certain topics. This will allow you to receive faster insights on trends or help you better appreciate your customer’s preferences before the launch of new offerings.

 

Simple Implementation

Now that we have discussed the many potential benefits, we should also review how easy it is for you to start SMS marketing for your business. The implementation couldn’t be simpler. Ensuring you have received permission from your audience, you can choose from a variety of SMS marketing services, platforms and software that enable you to create a viable campaign, utilise various automation and targeting tools, and be set up and sending messages in no time at all.

 

SMS Marketing Software & Platforms Available in Australia

While there are SMS marketing services available to assist you in developing your campaigns, there are also a variety of platforms, software and apps to help businesses across Australia do it themselves. Some popular examples include Klaviyo & Twillo, which can assist you with the automation of your SMS sending, the customisation of the messages themselves, and even integrate directly with your CRM tools. This form of integration allows you to seamlessly synchronise your contact list, as well as all the associated data connected to them.

 

How to Legally Send Bulk SMS Messages in Your Marketing Campaign

First, let’s cover the dos and don’ts when it comes to how you send your bulk SMS messages for your marketing campaign. In efforts to reduce spam and commercial scams, the Spam Act 2003 has some stipulations over SMS marketing in Australia, to ensure businesses act responsibly and in the best interests of their audience. To ensure you are in compliance with the act, your campaign must include:

  • Consent: Expressed or inferred agreeance to receiving your messages. This can either be in a written submission, verbally through initial conversations, or as an expected part of your dealings.
  • Identified Your Business: Your message must state exactly who your business is (and why you are sending the message).
  • Unsubscribe Functions: Within your SMS marketing campaign, there needs to be a feature where recipients can opt to ‘unsubscribe’ from your future messages.

Essentially, these rules are in place for businesses to build their contact databases on their SMS marketing software or platforms in an ethical manner, as well as holding purpose and potential value for their audience.

Disclaimer: This is not legal advice, please review the Act for further information.

 

4 SMS Marketing Examples to Help Businesses Across Australia

SMS Marketing Example 1: Develop & Push a Singular, Irresistible Deal

There is nothing better than when you are just carrying on with your day when a quick – ping! – interrupts your daydreaming, and you check your phone to find an offer of a hefty discount or promotion on highly coveted products or services.

One of the reasons why SMS marketing is so effective is that by enticing a discounted purchase to your subscribers, you can redirect a targeted audience back to your website, sending them through a funnel to increase their average transactional value. Another good tip here would be to use unique links in your SMS marketing campaigns, so you can better track the data on your site visits and conversions.

 

SMS Marketing Example 2: Build Awareness Around New Products & Services

Most businesses will add new products and services to their list of offerings at some point. While you might already have a sizeable customer base for your existing offerings, the launch and promotion of your new additions can play an enormous part in their future success.

Not only can you immediately introduce your audience to these new products and services (perhaps partnered with some enticing specials), but through a bulk SMS marketing campaign, you can also encourage certain behaviours. For example, ask your audience to share the product on social media, share testimonials, or even links to demonstration videos and ways on how these new offerings can improve their lives.

The key here is to adopt a short message that makes it clear why your audience should be interested in the offerings, as well as a strong CTA that will take them to the right location.

 

SMS Marketing Example 3: Collect Direct Feedback

With unique, mobile-optimised feedback forms, you can share links directly to your audience to offer feedback on certain matters. This could be sharing their experiences after purchasing a particular product or service, registering their interest in an upcoming launch, or even offering insights on their potential movements with your brand.

Be sure to ask for actionable feedback you can use as insights into adapting your business. This means moving past the generic questions with a rating of 1 to 5, and instead raising more probing points, perhaps with some text boxes. It helps to create an automation that sends a response of thanks to those who do submit feedback. This can be a simple ‘thank you’, or even a discount code to encourage similar uptake in the future.

 

SMS Marketing Example 4: Send Reminders

If you run events, such as webinars and online tutorials, have countdowns to product launches, or anything with a time element, you can use a bulk SMS campaign to send reminders to all subscribers and participants. This will give all stakeholders time to prepare and ensure maximum engagement when the time comes.

 

Are you Ready to Introduce the Benefits of an SMS Marketing Campaign Into Your Business?

SMS marketing is an extremely effective way to reach out to customers and prospects. It’s personal, fast, and low-cost, making it the perfect tool for businesses of all sizes across Australia. It is important to mention again that SMS marketing is a permission-based channel, which means businesses should only send messages to customers who have opted in to receive them. This helps to ensure that customers are only getting information that they want and helps to avoid any potential spam complaints.

If you’re not currently using SMS marketing software or platforms to help grow your business, now might be the perfect time to start!

All articles