10 SMS Marketing myths debunked

28 July 2022

At TextAnywhere we can be sure that sms marketing works and although we help a lot of customers every year to make the transition from traditional methods of marketing over to the unrivalled success of sms marketing campaigns, we can’t understand why some businesses are not using it? We tried to think of all the logical reasons why companies might be put off sms marketing messages and we drew a blank. The only logical explanation was that perhaps some businesses had got the wrong idea about sms marketing. We know from experience that when new customers approach us, they have lots of questions. It seems that there are a lot of myths surrounding sms marketing about who should and shouldn’t use it. So, we thought it would be best to put fears to rest and share our experience with you.

Why you need SMS for your marketing campaigns

You may have heard that SMS Marketing messages are now the go-to in new marketing strategies. Many companies are already experiencing exponential success with the use of bulk and automated SMS marketing platforms. There are some companies If you are currently using traditional marketing methods, you may not be seeing the same ROI you once did. Why is this? Well, times are changing and so are your engagers. The marketing methods that once did the trick are now lost in a fog of new technology and consumers are driving businesses toward more cutting-edge techniques that fit with their lifestyles. If they can’t access it in the palm of their hands, does it even exist? 

What is the success rate of SMS marketing?

Sending someone a text message is the fastest way to reach them and if you are looking for two-way interaction, the fastest way to receive a response. It might just blow your mind when we tell you that the rate for opening SMS messages is around 97%, this is 4 times more successful than via email. The average person looks at their mobile phone once every 4 minutes and with the growing popularity of smart-watches, many smartphone users can read messages without even picking up their devices.

It should come as no surprise that statistics show that 48% of people prefer to receive marketing communications by text. By contrast, only 22% prefer email ads and alerts, 20% pay attention to app notifications, and a meagre 8% would now welcome direct mail. 

Top 10 myths about sms marketing debunked

1. SMS marketing doesn’t work

People assume that sms marketing is still new to advertising. In general, the SMS marketing message spend has grown in the last decade by 28015%. In its infancy, it may not have seen the same level of success as we are seeing now for two reasons: 

  1. Text messages were not as popular as they are today
  2. There were originally some issues with privacy laws and many companies were spamming recipients and mishandling their data. 

Companies that use sms marketing all say the same thing: It’s not as good as traditional marketing channels, it’s exponentially better.

2. SMS is for younger generations

The largest audience base for sms marketing is indeed likely to be the 16-44-year-olds and that is simply because they are the largest consumers of smartphones. That doesn’t mean that people over the age of 44 are not using mobile phones, most people under the age of 75 have one and enjoy sending and receiving text messages on them. The difference is that they are more likely to stick to the same phone for multiple years which reduces their numbers in smartphone purchasing statistics. The marketing channel preference statistics quoted in this article include all age groups.

Using Sms marketing has been a welcome relief for older generations who are tired of hanging on with call-centres and choosing from multiple options in a vain attempt to get through to an actual person. The truth is that they would rather use two-way text messages than speak to a robot.

One of our valued customers Helping Hands was able to show its internal stakeholders over 15,000 resident surveys, collected via an sms survey link. Their main service is for the care of the elderly.

3. Consumers find sms marketing intrusive

Most marketing professionals will consider any negative impact on how they reach their target market because consumers are quite vocal about spamming and no organisation wants their name to be associated with spam marketing. We receive so much marketing communication through a variety of different channels daily that it’s easy to become saturated and from a marketing perspective, it’s easy for your campaign to get lost in it all. This is the main reason why email marketing campaigns are 4 times less successful than sms marketing campaigns.

Feedback on SMS marketing text messages indicates that recipients would prefer it to any other method of communication they are likely to receive from you. 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 marketing messages. We know that these statistics reflect how communication has changed over recent years. On the whole, people no longer like talking on the phone, they don’t have time for lengthy emails and are not prioritising mail through the door. Why would they? All the important stuff is on their smartphones. 

Remember that all of your subscribers are opt-in engagers and they can opt-out to cancel their subscription with you at any time. So, the only thing you need to concentrate on is how to keep them opting in. TextAnwhere can offer you lots of helpful hints and tips to avoid writing sms messages that are spammy or intrusive.

Explore the relationship that people have with their phones, what do they use them for? For most smartphone owners, the text messages they typically send and receive are exchanged with friends and family. Take care with your SMS marketing copy and make sure that it hits that same vibe. Let them know that you are there for your subscribers and that they are special – be more like a mate than a business. 

4. Sms marketing is expensive

A common misconception about all marketing strategies is that it’s going to cost you. Nothing good comes for free, but don’t make the mistake of thinking that sms marketing is expensive. It is one of the cheapest methods of advertising currently available. With TextAnywhere, the UK’s leading SMS provider, you can use text marketing from as little as 3.5p per SMS.

By using SMS business messaging, you will be enhancing your marketing performance and boosting your ROI by cutting down on other costs associated with marketing. Sms marketing messages are extremely cost-efficient.  You will not find a cheaper way to advertise to your consumers, the ROI is nothing like you have ever experienced before. As the description suggests, Short Messaging Service, SMS marketing messages do not take a lot of time, effort, or design to create, which will have a positive impact on your labour costs.  With the use of two-way SMS interaction, staff costs are cut down further as there is less need for calls to your engagers, also organically reducing your phone bill. Expensive pay-per-click internet ads can be reduced as you will be driving your consumers directly to you and cutting out the middleman.  

 Another big saving is the loss of direct mail.  As marketing statistics suggest, very few people are happy to receive direct mail and it is one of the more costly methods of communicating.  This is an important measure for any business looking to boost its ROI. 

5. It’s not suitable for smaller companies

At TextAnywhere we have a variety of differently sized customers who use our sms marketing platform for different purposes. The interesting thing is that often when a small business begins to use sms marketing messages, they find their customer base quickly grows because the ROI is so significant. Even more smaller businesses and at-home start-ups are moving to sms marketing campaigns. The misconception about text message marketing being only for bigger brands is largely due to the assumption that sms marketing is more costly than other marketing channels. As we have already established, nothing could be further from the truth.

Have a look at our case studies. There is one small business we have already helped whose story we would like to share with you:

Water Babies

From what started as a husband and wife team in 2002 teaching their children to swim, Paul and Jess Thompson were able to grow their business at a phenomenal rate by creating a franchise with our help. The business is now international and teaches over 30,000 children. 

They can use SMS mobile messaging to communicate important information to their clients instantly and also use it internally to schedule and communicate with staff. Working with other franchise owners, an important requirement of the SMS business message platform is that it’s simple and easy to use. Thankfully, our system makes it easy to train other users within your business to use with their client base. Here’s what Paul and Jess had to say about us:  

“Water Babies confirmed that the TextAnywhere system is so easy to work with existing users only need to spend around 10 to 15 minutes training each new franchise contact, which in turn saves the head office a significant amount of downtime”  

Water Babies – Head Office  

6. It’s not user-friendly

We know it can be daunting to learn new skills. We worry about how it will fit in with what we are already doing. You may have heard of the many benefits of sms marketing for business but are holding back for fear of complicating your marketing strategies. Will your staff require hours of training? Will your tech equipment be up to the job? Fear not, we’ve got you covered:

  • Easy to use – want you to choose us, so, it’s in our interests to make it as easy as possible for you. You will be amazed by how simple it is. It will be ready to go within days.
  • It fits in with your business – No need to worry that it won’t work with your current projects. When you see the response rates through your trackable system, you will wonder how you ever managed without it. SMS marketing complements other marketing channels and can work alongside them as part of a wider campaign.
  • No programming required – At TextAnywhere we integrate sms features into your software using your preferred programming language and our powerful API. You will have instant access to everything you need to start integrating sms functionality into your software.
  • Unlimited support – We offer FREE, unlimited technical support to ensure that you can integrate text messaging into your application swiftly and effectively. Our technical support is available by phone, by email, or through our extensive, online Developer Centre. Our support team, based in Nottingham, the UK alongside our comprehensive resource pages, accessible HERE are available to help you every step of the way. Alongside our support team, if required, you may qualify for access to one of our experienced account managers to help create and elevate your sms campaigns.
  • Automated responder – Automated sms can work in a couple of different ways. You can send sms messages out to the opt-in audience on your database or, bring in new prospects with a responsive marketing campaign. Both methods encourage the recipient to respond to you following a call to action. Once the system has been set up, there is no manual intervention required in the process.
  • Personalised to your target audience – Our sophisticated software will track the habitual data of your subscribers and automatically send messages out to the right customer at the right time. Once the system has been triggered, your opt-in engagers can expect to receive welcome texts, abandoned cart reminders, and exclusive deals based on their interests, updates, and alerts, automatically without increasing your workload.

7. SMS marketing messages curb creativity

If you have been relying on traditional marketing methods up to now and enjoying the benefits of creativity, you might be wondering how this can translate to a text of only 160 characters. Don’t be quick to dismiss the possibilities with sms marketing messages. Did you know that according to The Open University, Dr. Zeus wrote his award-winning book The Cat in the Hat using only 50 different words?

Sharing marketing information by sms will compliment your brand. With a strong brand, you should be able to link what your engagers are seeing through your other channels. So, by using the key elements of your brand, marketing texts should be instantly recognisable in short form. By choosing your most iconic images from MMS messages, headlines, or relatable gifs and emojis, your subscribers will be subconsciously drawn back to marketing channels associated with the campaign. Some brands have acronyms or abbreviations that they capitalise on, cutting down the need for long words, words allowing for more creativity. Texts can also have a short link the recipient can click on to take them straight to the heart of the action.

When we are given constraints in marketing, the most important information is usually communicated first. It is worth remembering that when you are sending messages out to customers’ mobile devices. They are looking for quick, non-intrusive, to-the-point communication so artistic flair is not always what they are looking for.

8. It doesn’t integrate with your email marketing strategy

Many marketers may worry that sms marketing may spell the end for your email marketing. Although statistics show that only 22% of consumers prefer to receive emails from companies, it’s not a number that should be ignored. You have learned over the years that reaching some of your customers via email has proven to be successful. Well luckily, you don’t have to choose. The two can work together for the best results. Sms marketing messages can deliver clear, concise, and quick messages at the click of a button for subscribers on the go. This is good because texts are often more urgent and time-critical Whereas, email delivers more content for those who have time and the call-to-action does not need to be immediate, which is helpful to catch the deliberators.It covers all bases. The great thing is, that because texts are so cheap, there is no reason that you can’t use both within the same campaign. With good continuity, they will complement each other.

Your email marketing could help to get you started with your sms marketing. When building a database, you can entice your email subscribers to become text subscribers by adding to your marketing emails.

9. It’s a fad

We are living in a world where nearly everything is a passing trend. This is because we are driven by constant progress. In marketing we are driven by customers’ wants, desires and lifestyles which are changing all the time. If this is the first time you have thought about finding a text marketing provider, then you would be forgiven for thinking that it’s fairly new. The Sms marketing message spend has grown in the last decade by 28015%.

The introduction of sms marketing to the advertising industry and sms for business has been revolutionary. The only change you are likely to see to sms marketing over the coming years is that it is going to become more advanced and even more popular with subscribers.

10. It’s only one way communication

We tend to think of sms marketing messages as just one-way. When we advertise to our target audience it’s usually to tell them something. Why sms works is because receiving marketing via text is the subscriber’s preferred method of communication. Worldwide 18.7 billion texts are sent per day. Whilst a small proportion of these texts will be for advertising, the majority are between more familiar connections. So, it makes sense to try to mimic a text message’s main use and start a conversation.

Sms marketing is commonly two-way with transactional sms. The company sends out the text and puts out a call for action and the recipient can respond. There are a few methods for replying. You can add keywords to your database, which trigger an automatic response depending on what the subscriber responds with, or you can organise responses to be sent to a managed inbox, where a dedicated member of staff or team can take over the conversation.

Two-way sms helps to build a relationship between the business and the end-user. When a conversation opens, there is a chance for the business to nurture a lead and the customer can start to trust the brand and not think of them as faceless. An instant response thanking your customer for their interest or business will confirm that they have been acknowledged and appreciated. Receiving an instant response is also a huge plus point in a world where no one has time to wait for anything. Being able to reply instantly will prevent some customers from looking elsewhere whilst waiting for you to come back to them.

We’ve busted the myths, how can we get you started?

Take advantage of our years of expert sms advice to add value, boost engagement and improve your ROI from your sms campaigns. When you sign up for a free trial with TextAnwhere we can offer you:

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  • 97% open rate
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