SMS messages, the kings of instant messaging, allow us to communicate with each other using very few characters (only 160 in a single message). This is a channel of communication with specific features that forces us to express ourselves in the clearest and most direct way possible, especially in the realm of marketing. Far from being a case of “anything goes”.
Therefore, by using copywriting techniques (that difficult and valuable art of creating messages that are as courteous, appealing and persuasive as possible) and other useful tricks, you can achieve the best results in your campaigns: maximum impact and greater effectiveness. We have listed some of the key points here.
- The power of the word: every word that you use in an SMS message should be chosen with care. A marketing SMS message is not a normal text message and, as well as being direct and clear, the first line has to grab your attention. This is achieved by using the right verbs and adjectives, the ones that catch your eyes (about taste, preference or desire).
And if you need to summarise, use abbreviations (always standard ones, not the ones used in internet slang) such as % instead of “percent” or numbers (35 instead of “thirty-five”). But don’t overdo it.
- Using capital letters: using capital letters is controversial: it may be eye-catching, but if it’s overdone it’s counterproductive as it makes reading more difficult. Therefore, start the message with the first letter capitalised (correct according to the spelling rules), but keep the rest of the text in small letters. Only use capital letters to break the monotony and to stress or highlight an important word.
- I am a formal professional: it is generally best to use formal language, giving an impression of professionalism, without being too serious. Use colloquial, but polite language, adapting it to your audience (sometimes, if the recipient is younger, you should use a more casual tone). Everything depends on the effect that you want to achieve, because it’s also good to surprise every now and again.
- Relax, it’s me: it is essential that you always clearly identify yourself as the sender. It is also necessary to include a way for recipients to contact you.
- How timely!: it is important to determine the most suitable time for your customers to receive your SMS messages. Messages are received and viewed differently on a mobile than in emails, it is more immediate. Therefore, although it depends on the type of company and the service offered, marketing experts recommend sending bulk SMS messages between 9am and 11pm on business days (depending on the country). If the message is to remind them of an appointment (e.g. with a doctor), it should be sent 24 hours in advance. And if the promotion in question is for the weekend, apparently Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best days to offer it.
- You like me and you need me: this is the feeling that your message should convey to be a success. Any message in an SMS marketing campaign must encourage the recipient to act, while creating a sense of urgency: it should not only say what the recipient should do, but also when they should do it. Try with formulas such as “only today”, “last chance” or “book now”.
- This SMS message is only for you: personalising the message is something to consider. If you have the name or occupation of your customers on your database, use it to your advantage.