Using the latest research, I serve up the secret recipe which hundreds of agencies are failing to implement into their marketing strategies.

Contrary to belief, there is a method to my madness. Let me ask you this: how many times do you order a meal at McDonald’s and are asked: “is that a large?”

From the outset, I rarely hear a member of their staff suggesting a medium size. It’s as if that isn’t even an option. My point is, these guys are psychologically planting the seed and persuading us to consider purchasing a larger and more expensive product.

Yet, I’m not offended or frustrated by this question, in fact, I’d feel rather bemused if I didn’t hear it. In other words, McDonald’s have created this subtle upselling machine that we’ve become accustomed to and often take full advantage of. This is something marketing agencies can learn a lot from.

How can agencies create a similar upselling strategy to McDonald’s?

For obvious reasons, it’s always going to be a lot harder for you to sell further marketing services than a simple upgrade from a medium to large milkshake.

Despite this fact, there is a real opportunity for you – but it starts with getting the basics right.

According to the 2016 Pricing & Financials Report, a staggering 51% of agencies don’t have a plan in place for upselling and retention.

That’s just under half of agencies missing the opportunity to increase client retention, generate more revenue from existing accounts, and build stronger relationships.

Which begs the question: are you offering extra services your clients actually want?

Considering other avenues

Understandably, there’s no real need to have an upselling strategy in place when you don’t have an ‘in-demand’ extra service to flog. It’s not like McDonald’s, where the thought of extra food is hard to turn down.

When it comes to receiving a branded or business-based communication, research conducted for the Mobile for marketing agencies white paper found that consumers prefer the SMS and email channels. This is an intriguing discovery, considering that Facebook dominates mobile advertising spend in the UK, accounting for around 50% of the grand total.

While its response rates of between 1%-20% far exceed the average click-through rates of 0.5%-0.7% of mobile banner ads, only 9% of consumers want to be marketed to on Facebook.

Email marketing may also be highly popular, but the average peak open rate of circa 23% is no match for text messaging. And then there’s the fact that most businesses are already using email communications.

On the other hand, business SMS is still relatively new to the agency sector. It’s cost-effective and growing in popularity every year with clients and consumers. Yet, despite these facts and its impressive average 98% open rate and 32% response rate, just 14.3% of agencies place SMS marketing as a core component of everything it does for clients. But why?

An agency’s view of SMS marketing

Making this opportunity more widely understood will be critical in driving increased SMS adoption by marketing and communication agencies. Presently, just over two-fifths of agencies stated that SMS marketing is “nice, but not understood”, and still viewed it as “a nice add on”.

These reasons don’t seem to add up. Especially when you consider that SMS marketing has helped a client achieve a 4,000% ROI, and an average of 78% of messages sent from a company they know and have given their mobile number to will be read.

There’s no denying that there’s a real gap for agencies to upsell SMS marketing and introduce it as a core component of cross-channel marketing and CRM campaigns.

You don’t need a mobile expert to become one in SMS, just the right partner to deliver true, unequalled value to clients.

The beauty of SMS marketing is that it sells itself. In 2016, 37.2 million consumers had opted in to receive business text messages, and by 2020, this figure is set to rise to 48.65 million. In other words, SMS marketing is like a fine wine and will only grow in popularity with consumers and clients.

Can you afford to ignore the upselling opportunity business SMS presents?

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