Text campaigns offer more than just a great way for companies to save money on their marketing. As an automated marketing medium, SMS can also save a huge amount of time, freeing up staff to spend their valuable resource on other crucial areas of the business.
So just how much time can be saved for businesses by introducing SMS automation?
Automation allows even the smallest of marketing teams to spread across the many different channels. Employing technology means that staff can consolidate these tasks, enabling them to spend their time much more efficiently. This doesn’t necessarily mean employing fewer staff members, though. This time saving will actually allow marketing professionals to maximise their productivity, by instead concentrating on areas of that require their expertise. These are tasks that cannot be done by a machine, as they’re typically more creative processes.
More and more companies are turning to forms of automation as part of their promotional strategy. In fact, a survey of marketers found that 91 per cent of the most successful said automation was ‘very important’ to the overall success of their marketing across channels, according to Marketo & Ascend2.
Having processes happen automatically with less involvement from staff will undoubtedly streamline operations; simultaneously improving customer experience while reducing the chance of human error in campaigns.
More than a third (36 per cent) of marketers said that one of the biggest benefits of automating tasks was how it freed up time and focus for more exciting projects. Another survey found that 74 per cent said time saving was the biggest benefit.
Getting rid of mundane or repetitive tasks – such as envelope stuffing or cold calling – and replacing them with modern, speedier and more cost-effective communication such as SMS or email, allows for time to be spent on other tasks that can increase a company’s revenue.
Gartner research predicts that this type of communication will only grow further in future. It stated that, by the year 2020, customers will manage 85 per cent of their relationship with a company without talking to a human.
Reaching a larger customer base, faster
Automation, such as bulk SMS or email marketing, allows a business to communicate with thousands of customers simultaneously every day. All of this can take place at the touch of a button, something that would not have been possible manually. Gone are trips to the post office to deliver large bags of direct mail; no longer are days filled up with repetitive phone calls to an extensive database.
SMS is particularly effective for this, as it cuts through much chatter of modern day life, reaching a customer instantly wherever they may be. With one of the highest open rates of all direct marketing mediums at an impressive 98 per cent, text messaging is an ideal channel for cutting down time outlays. This is especially true when you know that it will be time – and money – well spent. In fact, 30 per cent of marketers feel that marketing automation allows for better targeting of customers and prospects.
Not only can SMS save your marketers time, it can enable efficiency in many other areas of the business. Sending out SMS appointment reminders for practices such as doctors’ surgeries, dentists and hairdressers will not just save on time and paper, it’s also proven to reduce no-shows; meaning staff time isn’t wasted by missed appointments.
In an average 24 hours, the NHS deals with almost 700,000 patients, although more than 50,000 appointments are missed. Introducing SMS reminders instead of 2nd class postal notes will not only save money but also drive down waiting lists and make more efficient use of staff time.
It’s clear that text messages should play a key part in marketing strategies for companies of any size. Proven as an effective medium in helping businesses reach more customers (with less effort and time), SMS marketing works across countless sectors.
As automation becomes more of a mainstream activity for businesses, even those industries that are lagging behind the trend – such as education, healthcare and utilities – will begin to reap the benefits. They will see just what role marketing tools like bulk text message campaigns, appointment reminders and drip-feed emails can play in an overall marketing strategy.