If you want to retain customers and drive customer loyalty you may need to up your game and invest in a good sms marketing platform. SMS marketing messages are the most preferred method of communication for customers now. 84% of Brits own mobile phones and according to a study carried out by Nottingham Trent university the average person looks at their phone 85 times a day! So it’s no surprise that sms has an open rate of 97%!
Only 22% of consumers prefer to receive marketing messages via email. It’s no wonder when you consider that on average we receive around 100 daily. This leads to mindless scrolling and deleting messages before they have even been read. 77% of consumers say that businesses offering sms services have a more positive image. This potentially ties in the theory that most brands operating an sms program are likely to have a good customer loyalty program too.
How do you attract customer loyalty?
You could be forgiven for thinking that a happy customer is also a loyal customer as it seems like a fair assumption. Happy and loyal are not the same thing.
A happy customer is generally satisfied with your product or service and would gladly purchase from you again. But, be warned, this customer can easily be persuaded to buy elsewhere with the right marketing campaign, a better price, a voucher, etc.
A loyal customer – yep, they do exist! Not only do these guys love what you do, but they are prepared to tell others how good you are too, and want everyone to shop with you because they think your brand is the best. When looking for the products or services you sell, they would never consider looking elsewhere – you are the first brand that they think about.
These days, with so much choice and convenience from competing brands, happy customers are in far greater supply than loyal ones. More recently, many households are struggling to pay bills as fuel costs continue to rise. So, purchasing priorities may have changed.
Now, more than ever, to convert happy customers to loyal customers companies should look to invest in sms marketing messages to nurture leads, drive loyalty and keep customers coming back again and again.
We have put together our top sms marketing message types and things you can do to drive loyalty and customer retention:
Welcome to the brand
Create a welcome series for your new sms subscribers. You may have lured your new members with a sign-up incentive. Show them what they can expect to gain by being a subscriber to your brand. Send your first text soon after the customer has opted in to receive your text messages and add the incentive that first attracted them to the welcome message.This is your opportunity to show them the benefits of remaining a subscriber. Show them what else you can offer and give it an exclusive members-only feel.
By nurturing the relationship at this first stage, subscribers will feel confident that they made the right choice and may even recommend subscribing to others.
Abandoned cart reminders
With automated sms, you can send out reminders to your customers to check out the contents of their baskets. As well as a little nudge for the consumer it shows that you are prepared to go the extra distance and make the sale easier for them.
“Hi James, we noticed you checking out these items (item image attached). You have great taste BTW. If you would like to complete your sale, please click on the link provided”
You could also add a discount code to encourage the completion of the sale.
After sales messages
It’s not all about chasing the sale. Once a sale has been made, you can reach out to the customer with sms to check in with them. There are a few things you may want to ask such as:
- “Was everything ok?”
- “Are you happy with your purchase?”
- “Would you buy from us again?”
- “Is there anything we could do to improve your experience?”
Keeping contact with the customer will keep your relationship with them current and memorable. They will start to build trust when they know that you are interested in how you did.. Once you have their attention, they will want you to send discounts and coupons for future purchases.
After-sales sms can work across your social media channels too. You can ask your customers to leave feedback for other shoppers to view across various different platforms. Maybe incentivise feedback with a prize draw.
Use Automated sms to keep in touch with your customers. You can trigger messages to be sent soon after a purchase You may also consider feedback requests, re-purchase reminders and discounts can be sent automatically at regular intervals.
Convenient customer services
Whilst we are on the subject of after-sales sms, let your customers know that they can return to you at any time and you will always be there for them. You are not just there when they are happy, but also for those times when things haven’t gone quite as well as they would have liked. For example, there is nothing more frustrating than a complicated returns procedure or staying on hold to a company for nearly an hour trying to resolve an issue.
Send a text shortly after a package has been delivered to check if it has been received and if there are any issues. Your returns procedure could be contained within a link. No business wants to encourage customers to return products but, if you make your returns process easier, they are more likely to trust you and feel confident buying from you again. In turn, this will save you labour costs as customers are less likely to need to contact you for further information.
Tell customers that if they have any other issues they can text you about them. With two-way sms and keywords, most issues can be resolved via sms messaging, without the need for human intervention. Even if you do have staff manning your customer service texts, there are still savings to be made when you streamline service. Dealing with customer services in this way will delight your customers as 86% of people claim to be put on hold every time they call a business. The use of sms for customer services can:
- Cut down on waiting times
- Reduce staff levels
- Decrease the amount of frustration felt by customers
- Be a one-stop-shop, rather than allowing customers to be passed around to get their issues dealt with.
Captialise on seasonal events
Whatever’s happening in the marketing calendar, there is always a seasonal event just around the corner. Aside from the obvious such as Christmas, Easter, Halloween, etc. There are annually recognised days or time periods that you could use to drive sales such as back-to-school, Black Friday, or summer holidays. All of which give you an excuse to get in touch with your subscribers. Maybe send a voucher, give them the heads-up on a flash sale or just let them know how you are celebrating a particular event that compliments your brand’s message.
Around the world retailers take advantage of Black Friday and can use the opportunity to send texts and alerts to remind people that they are participating. Every day there is a national day to celebrate or raise awareness of something, details of which will be circulating on social media, so the chances are that your customer has heard about it. If you find one that ties in with your brand, your subscribers will not be surprised to hear from you. Every year on November 5th Twycross Zoo in the midlands invites red-headed guests to enter for free on OrangUtan awareness day.
Using sms messages to let consumers know that shipping deadlines are coming up is also a quick way to call people to action. There are always delivery limits that occur around the holiday seasons such as:
- School summer holidays
- Mother’s day and father’s day
Customers will welcome reminders to complete their purchases in time.
Loyalty schemes are a huge draw for pulling in new subscribers. A good loyalty program will make your customers feel that they are getting something for nothing. As well as boosting your database, it could help you to achieve customer lifetime value. The basic principle of a loyalty scheme is that the customer receives extra rewards when they spend with you or act on your promotions.
Your loyalty club members need to have access to exclusive deals as part of their membership. They will need to spend a lot of money to build up points with you so they are in it for the long haul and pretty much a captive audience for marketing communications. Receiving sms marketing messages to update them on their points totals and exclusive offers is an interaction they would expect.
Birthdays and personalisation
Loyalty programs are a way to capture customer data. As well as using this data to perfect your marketing efforts and receive valuable shopper statistics, you can also use it to enhance your relationship with your members. Send birthday texts and special offers to acknowledge their special day. It will make them feel seen and valued by your organisation. Include their name and a personal message, and tailor a discount to a specially selected product that you know they like.
By using the latest in sms marketing technology, you will be able to track your performance along the way at any time. Sms marketing data will tell you how each campaign performed individually so that you can monitor your successes and those that failed to hit the mark. You’ll know who received the texts, which links were clicked on, and even how many of your target consumers unsubscribed following your campaign. This will allow you to turn your campaign around quickly if things don’t exactly go according to plan. By using the right sms gateway, you can incorporate consumer activity data into the direction of your campaign.
By using tracking, you can be more confident in the methods you are using to draw old customers back.
Try non-promotional SMS
Finding different ways to achieve customer engagement be a tricky balance. Ultimately, you want people to invest in your brand and not be put off by your overbearing marketing efforts. Over the years, customers have made it abundantly clear that they do not like the hard sell. Sometimes, it’s about finding a softer way to nurture a lead and showing an interest in the customer. You could tell subscribers a little about the story of your brand or the origin of the products and invite them to fall in love with your business too.
Sms marketing messages may seem limited and viewed as targeted marketing. They can be but not every message needs to be. All sms subscribers need to opt-in to give permission to receive text messages from your brand. With this in mind, it is really important to work on how you keep hold of those subscribers. What do they want to receive from you? We know that the majority of customers prefer sms to any other method of communication and statistics show that 77% of consumers opt-in to receive coupons or to hear about deals and sales. 66% said they had even redeemed a special offer via text within 7 days of receiving it! Perhaps that’s why 64% of consumers think that companies should contact them more often through sms campaigns. So, you know why they are subscribed, you have to find a way to keep them engaged and interested. It shouldn’t all revolve around sales.
Give your ROI a boost
At TextAnywhere we understand a thing or two about boosting your ROI with sms marketing messages, it’s what we do best. We offer sms landing pages and can help to build engaging campaigns that capitalise on the benefits of SMS while offering images, videos, and interactive elements. Here are some of our highlights and things that any good provider should offer:
- Studio two-way chat for conversational commerce.
- Advanced analytics on campaign performance using studio tracking open rates, conversions, and more.
- 99.9% uptime.
- Enterprise-level support for companies of all sizes via phone and email.
- Professional API to integrate with your software.
- Bulk segmented SMS campaigns that can be sent using our platform.
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