Mobile messaging for SME’s by Textlocal MD Darren Daws

Mobile has grown significantly as a marketing, communication and sales channel over recent years. However, we believe there’s still work to be done to educate businesses to communicate with their customers in this way. We recently undertook some B2B research which surveyed 600 businesses across the UK to understand what they thought about mobile marketing and communications and how they’re using it. According to the findings of our Great British Mobile Marketing survey we found that 86% of businesses aren’t aware of the high consumer response rates of SMS, which can reach up to 28%. Similarly, 75% of respondents didn’t know that 97.5% of all text messages are usually read within five seconds.

Our research indicates that while many businesses are aware of mobile messaging, they have yet to tap into the full potential of how powerful it can be as a business driver. This is frustrating when we know that there’s always a place for SMS within the marketing mix. So why are some businesses still resistant to incorporating mobile messaging into their marketing strategies? Why are so many businesses still yet to unlock the full potential? Do they feel it’s had its day? Or is it because they don’t understand how it can be used alongside other marketing channels?

The problem for many businesses is understanding what mobile entails, how complex and versatile it can be, and how it can be used to target audiences en mass. SMS has moved on, and it can now incorporate rich media. No longer are you limited to 160 characters of text. The ubiquity of smartphone technology and the public’s familiarity with tiny links on social media platforms means that mobile messaging can be used as a trigger to link to the bigger picture. It can be used as the hook to direct the reader to where they need to be, faster than if they were left to their own devices. Links to apps, videos and web pages are easily incorporated into mobile messages, and the unique factor is that SMS works on every phone no matter the make or model. Its overwhelming advantage is its capacity to reach people virtually instantly, wherever they are.

Maybe some businesses feel it’s costly, and don’t realise that 100 opted-in customers can be targeted via SMS for under £5. There could be many reasons for SME’s being slow to capitalise on mobile, such as lack of expertise and education. But one thing is for sure: mobile is here to stay and combining mobile messaging to any strategy will produce immediate results for any business.

This article first appeared on the DMA website