4 Remarkable Benefits of SMS Marketing

Melanie Balke
March 27, 2024

It may not be as glamorous as email marketing, and it certainly isn’t as old as its counterpart. But that doesn’t mean SMS marketing has nothing to offer! Like its older cousin, SMS campaigning is a cost-effective way to deliver a well-rounded customer experience.

It’s a powerful marketing tool, yet it’s often overlooked!

So, I’m dedicating today’s blog post to uplifting the humble SMS message. It’s time the world sees how this flexible marketing strategy can excite, delight, and inform customers.

1. The Gargantuan Reach of SMS Marketing Campaigns

A pickleball court. "Access & Reach: SMS Marketing Has a Massive Audience."

I’ll start with the obvious.

Everyone is addicted to those dang phones!

Fortunately, I’m not here to pass socio-philosophical judgment. I’m here for the marketing, and the marketing data is clear.

Mobile devices are the most prolific marketing channel. I won’t even guess how many people have a working phone. What I will say is that a massive chunk of the planet now owns and uses a smartphone.

As of 2021, 98% of America’s young adults (18–29 years old) own a smartphone. And those potential consumers are doing more than checking your marketing message. They’re also doing more mobile shopping.

In fact, according to a 2022 Klaviyo study, only one “major” demographic, the Baby Boomers, has a statistically significant opposition to the marketing channel. (And that “statistically significant” opposition is a measly six percent! The majority of Boomers are not opposed to SMS marketing messages.)

These numbers are propelling SMS marketing to the forefront of modern business growth. It’s not as popular as email marketing, but reports show steady growth. As of 2022, 40% of businesses report using SMS marketing.

2. Text Message Marketing Delivers Results

A patent drawing. "Performance: Text Message Marketing Works."

Of course, those numbers mean nothing without results.

And SMS marketing is more than happy to deliver!

SMS marketing campaigns frequently receive more conversion, engagement, and interest than similar marketing channels.

In 2022, these remarkable marketing messages delivered an average open rate of 98%. Comparatively, email marketing earned a measly 15–20% average. CTRs were also better, with SMS campaigns earning 9.18% more click-throughs than their digital marketing cousins.

Most of these results are driven by the modern compulsion to be connected.

However, I’m sure there are some naysayers reading this. These are unbelievable results. But don’t worry! There’s plenty of data to back these seemingly impossible claims.

Consumers Expect SMS Marketing Campaigns

Like emails, text messages are an immediate and satisfying way to engage customers.

Despite their limitations, text message marketing messages are the perfect vessel for bite-sized updates. Moreover, bulk SMS campaigns have inherent flexibility and can fill multiple roles. Comparatively, similar traditional marketing methods — such as television advertisements — are static snapshots.

Klaviyo’s research suggests that customers expect consistent communication. While few would enjoy daily text updates, 40% favor weekly SMS marketing.

SMS Marketing Translates to Mobile E-Commerce

Thanks to the proliferation of smart mobile devices, SMS marketing also serves as a simple segue to online shopping.

Now, before you start pointing out that I’ve already mentioned mobile commerce, allow me a moment to clarify. Mobile shopping earned $362 billion (yes, billion) in 2021, and it’s only expected to grow. Kalin Kassabov, a trusted Forbes contributor, expanded on that figure, noting that mobile sales were 6.9% of global commerce in 2022. That’s massive capital potential. And it’s literally at your customer’s fingertips.

Overlapping leaves and text. The text describes the text message statistics listed below. "SMS Stats: How Text Messages Can Amplify Your Marketing Strategy."

SMS Marketing Statistics Roundup

Still need more proof of the benefits of SMS marketing? Or, perhaps, you want a quick summary of its statistic superiority!

Don’t fret! I’ve rounded up the numbers you must know. (Yes, I repeated a few numbers.)

  • In 2022, SMS marketing campaigns had an average open rate of 98%. That’s huge!
  • Most consumers (specifically 9 out of 10) prefer text message marketing over similar marketing channels.
  • SMS marketing has a 1.49% average unsubscribe rate across all industries. That’s remarkably low!
  • Text message marketing efforts earn an average click-through rate of 11.19% in 2023. Optimized campaigns fared even better, earning a 23.08% click-through rate on average.

3. An SMS Campaign Can Fill Many Roles

A B-52 Fortress bomber. "Flexibility: SMS Has So Many Possibilities."

Looking beyond the numbers, I want to emphasize the flexibility of modern SMS marketing.

Like emails, text messages are adaptable ways to engage customers. You can do so much more than send promotional messages and sales announcements. Indeed, SMS messaging is the perfect way to build brand loyalty and streamline your customer journey.

The Many Faces of SMS Messages

So, how can we use thee, SMS marketing? Let me count the ways!

Most modern text message marketing can be broken into four categories: informative, loyalty-based, transactional, and update-based. Each group has a distinct target audience and pulls from different customer data, but the benefits of SMS marketing remain the same. You get the same direct communication and personalization capabilities without the clutter and competition of other marketing channels.

Informative SMS Marketing Messages

The first category is comparable to the email newsletter. These SMS campaigns aim to educate and inform consumers, urging them close to your business. They build upon customer trust and serve a (mostly) supporting role in your overall marketing strategy.

However, there are limitations. Every mobile carrier’s short message service (what “SMS” stands for) is limited to 160 characters. You can extend the length by using MMS campaigns, but these may not appear properly on some customers’ mobile devices.

You may see where I’m going with this. If not, allow me to elaborate: Simplicity increases customer satisfaction.

You can’t outwit the facts. SMS offers limited space. The most successful campaigns build around those limitations, incorporating shortened links to dedicated landing pages.

The Loyalty-Based SMS Marketing Campaign

The next category of SMS marketing requires pre-planning and technical implementation. That doesn’t make it a bad choice; it only means that you’ll need a skilled expert to perfect your vision. This subset of SMS marketing focuses on building and maintaining customer loyalty.

It may seem like a waste of resources, but the numbers say otherwise. In 2022, a Klaviyo survey showed that 22% of consumers expect and enjoy loyalty-based SMS marketing.

It makes sense, too. 15.7% of consumers expect a modicum of personalization. It’s an essential building block for gaining customer loyalty.

These personalized messages drive customer engagement and add a touch of warmth to your text marketing strategy. They fulfill the human desire for compassion and genuine interaction, a sort spot for many traditional marketing channels.

Transactional Text Message Marketing

This is your bread and butter.

These SMS messages focus on conversions and revenue. They drive sales and complement your other marketing strategies. They’re low-cost filler to maintain customer engagement and appease specific customer segments.

Common examples of transactional SMS marketing efforts include:

  • Coupon codes
  • “Door-buster” promotional messages
  • Sales announcements
  • Seasonal discounts

There’s not much more to say about them! So, instead, let me move to the final category.

Using Text Message Marketing Services for Updates

The final category is the most utilitarian. You may have examples on your phone right now!

These SMS messages keep customers worry-free. In doing so, they improve customer satisfaction. Like loyalty campaigns, these are well-received marketing messages. Ideally, you should use that expectation to your advantage.

Savvy brands often incorporate outbound links and upelling strategies into their update text messages. They remind customers of important information while subtly suggesting additional services or upgrades.

And don’t worry about the technicalities! Modern SMS marketing platforms have easy-to-use interfaces to help you build efficient and effective SMS marketing update campaigns.

The most common examples of these text messages include:

  • Appointment reminders
  • Back-in-stock notifications
  • Delivery updates

4. SMS Marketing is a Secure and Reliable Platform

A beach hut. "Security: Data Security and SMS Marketing."

You probably expected to see more about how SMS marketing is a low-cost solution to customer engagement, but I’m mixing things up!

Yes, you’ll get a cost-effective customer service channel with instant delivery and in-depth analytics. SMS marketing offers plenty of flexible marketing tools and integrations, too. But those are obvious benefits.

Instead, I want to praise a lesser-recognized perk of this marketing channel.

SMS marketing is one of the most secure and reliable marketing tools. And you’ll get the tools you need to keep it that way with any marketing service.

Built-In Information Security

Most of its security comes from its first-party data. This is a fancy way to say your instant messaging data isn’t scraped from websites or purchased from unscrupulous vendors. In fact, doing either of those things is illegal. Doing both is a one-way ticket to massive fines.

Like (legal) email campaigning, SMS marketing relies on the recipient’s voluntary compliance. You can’t send a single text message marketing campaign without the recipeint’s full and explicit consent. This means multiple things, but the most important takeaways should be that…

  • Customers are wholeheartedly interested in your content. That’s great news for customer retention.
  • Customers are willing to invest in your brand. Otherwise, they’d opt-out of your text marketing campaigns.
  • Customers have provided explicit consent to receive text message marketing. In some ways, this makes SMS marketing more restrictive than some email marketing. Federal United States laws don’t require explicit consent for emails, but they do require it for text message marketing services.
  • Customers want more from your brand. Customers trust your brand enough to voluntarily surrender their phone number. Don’t abuse that trust! However, you must take full advantage of their eagerness.

Amplify Your Next SMS Marketing Campaign

Overlapping leaves. "Hire a Pro: Give Your Text Messages a Boost."

Now, this isn’t breaking business news. Savvy brands have spent the past two decades building lucrative text messaging empires. However, your journey has only begun!

It’s time to expand your reach and amplify the effectiveness of your other marketing channels. It’s your chance to begin engaging customers on their level.

That said, making SMS services work for you can be difficult!

That’s why I founded The Email Marketers.

My hand-picked team of pros knows everything there is about SMS marketing. They’ve delivered results and shown the benefits of SMS marketing to countless clients. Now, it’s your turn to reap the rewards. And there are no length phone calls involved. Simply schedule a free strategy session and get a personalized text messaging plan for your brand.