6 SMS marketing predictions for the rest of 2022

27 July 2022

There are a few considerations when trying to make SMS marketing predictions for the remainder of 2022, it may be quite different from previous years due to the global pandemic and the growth of social media platforms such as Tik Tok.

Having experienced many different ways to shop, the consumer now dictates what they want to see and how they wish to see it. Convenience is key to success for all brands.

Sms marketing is the fastest and most efficient way to reach your potential customers and is now becoming the preferred method of marketing and transactional communications. With an open rate of 97% and a fast read rate within minutes, it is unrivalled. In the UK alone, a staggering 92% of all brits already have a mobile phone and we look at them on average once every 4 minutes. Tapping into this resource will be imperative for the future.

Here are 6 other mobile marketing predictions we have made that might help you out:

1. Marketing and communication with brands will be customer driven

Consumers now are the driving force behind how brands communicate with them. As we advance in technology and ideas about how to interact with customers, it will inevitably lead to a demand for a more streamlined process. Our modern world is focused on convenience for the end-user. For this reason, mobile phones have become a huge part of our everyday life, which in turn has driven current mobile marketing trends.

With so much of our lives contained in mobile technology, if you can’t access something via a mobile phone, does it even exist? Well, the argument for future-proofing your brand with sms marketing strategies has never been stronger. If you have something you want to share, who is going to see it outside of their mobile phone interaction?

What will customers be seeking more of?

Live interaction

We are already seeing smartphone users making the most of video streaming for tutorials, lifestyle, entertainment, etc. The younger generation wastes very little time reading through pages of information to get their needs met. Instead, they want to be where the people are and they want to see what the people do. We are becoming a very visual society and the next generation of consumers will demand information to be spoon-fed to them whilst they get on with their very busy lives.

Social media apps such as Tik Tok, Facebook, and Instagram are already using influencers to style out their products in videos. There is almost everything you ever wanted to know in a podcast now hosted by a celebrity too. With live video streaming events, engagers are even able to interact with brands and influencers at the same time as being exposed to the content. This is a great way to enable the consumer to feel included and valued by your brand.

The mobile gaming market is also on the rise, younger people will be spending more time submerged in a virtual world. Investors are pumping billions into the gaming industry as it holds the attention of a sizable proportion of the population. Influencers use gaming to build a follower base and have access to a wealth of subscribers. The mobile gaming industry has been sending out push notifications and alerts for years now, but push notifications are losing popularity. We could be seeing gaming alerts migrating to sms to build more of a relationship between game and gamer.

Sms marketing is a really useful tool to bring live streaming, podcasts, and videos directly to your subscribers as and when it’s happening. You can also send out tickets to live online events and reminders to keep everyone in the loop and raise attendance. Sms marketing texts are perfect for sending links out to thousands of subscribers at the same time.

Two-way communication

Remember how we told you that for a consumer, being able to interact with influencers during live streaming enabled them to feel included? Well, guess what? In the future, we predict that the only way to get your brand noticed will be to work on that relationship more than you thought possible. If you don’t, someone else will. Consumers already expect everything instantly, because they are slowly getting used to that way of working with the brands they favour. If they have a question or need, they need a quick response, or they may take their business elsewhere.

The Benefits

It sounds like adapting might put a strain on finances and resources but, luckily this is not the case with sms marketing messages. Sms has several functions to enable you to nurture your audience effortlessly and at a very low cost:

  • Bulk smssend out texts to thousands of subscribers at the touch of a button.
  • Transactional sms your sms gateway can automatically issue instant confirmations, follow up with reminders, and even rescheduling.
  • Automated sms send your consumers automated replies to their requests for information to save them searching elsewhere.
  • Personalised sms – all of the tools above can be personalised by synchronising with the information held on your database to include names, dates, and times. You can also separate your customers by areas of interest and send more targeted ads and avoid sending them irrelevant information.

Virtual reality

Virtual reality has had a couple of false starts in the past with 3D TV and cinema as a starting point. Back in the 90s, we were promised that VR would be our future and that everything we wanted to do, we would be able to do via augmented reality. It’s been a long time coming and a lot of us still believe that it’s only for children and gamers. But, with the demise of the high street store, VR is likely to become more mainstream and less of an entertainment experience. Imagine walking around a clothing store and being immersed in an interactive shopping experience. Not only will it mean that shoppers no longer have to leave the house to shop, it will also enable people to have free access to personal shopping assistants to influence purchases. Products could be added to a basket and sent for you to try as you walk around and questions about the garments answered by a personal bot.

If the customer’s measurements are stored and a computer image generated, the customer will be able to get a sense of whether or not an item is going to look ok on them and will hopefully reduce the need for costly returns.

So how do we bring the customers into the VR stores? Brands may look to use sms marketing messages to integrate with this new way of shopping. Sms can enable VR stores to send invitations, reminders, general marketing, and discounts. If stores want to retain some personal touches, sms messages could be used to schedule appointments.

2. Two-way communication will shape the brand-to-customer relationship

Two-way communication with our favourite brands is something we would all like to have more of. So many consumers complain that companies are happy enough to take your money, but that you can’t talk to them when you need to. This is one of the biggest turn-offs for consumers and a driving factor when hunting for products and services. For this reason, one of our predictions sees the rise of two-way communication between brands and service users.

Employing two-way sms helps to build your relationship with your subscribers. It strengthens their level of trust in you. It boosts your reputation to attract customers. You become more accessible to the end-user and let’s face it, you are interacting with them using their most preferred method of communication.

Texting is easy for most of us and more importantly, it’s instant. We can do it on the go, at home, at work, or at the gym just on our mobile devices. When dealing with some companies, you just know that you are going to need to set aside time to make contact and get a quote, make an enquiry or get an issue resolved. Some companies have a reputation for passing customers around and keeping people on hold. It’s frustrating and very often automated voice messages are used to direct the caller. At TextAnywhere we understand the pressure call centres are under and the need for automation. But, if you are going to use automation to deal with customers they would much prefer two-way sms messages because texting is in their comfort zone.

Certain online retailers use two-way sms to deal with account issues. Customers are encouraged to text a short code with their queries. The two-way sms will pick up the contact and respond instantly instructing the client on the next step. For example:

Customer: “I have not received a refund for my returns.”

Automated responder: “I’m here to help! Please type in your order number and I will have a look at your account”

Customer: “20057983”

Automated Responder: ” I can see that we processed your return this morning. Please allow 3-5 working days for the amount to appear in your bank account.”

Automated responder: “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

Customer: “No thanks”

Automated responder: “Have a nice day.”

Some of the two-way communication currently available through sms messaging is automated and they rely on keywords. Our prediction for the future is that as customers crave a more personal experience, more brands will be looking to extend to real human interaction. This will boost customer relationships and enhance brand loyalty. By employing these tactics, companies can boost sales and nurture leads more effectively. It will also help to cut the time taken to make a sale. Whilst automated services are always going to help to reduce staff costs, having staff interact with customers via sms will still help to reduce those costs.

3. Customer will be king

You hear many people speak of their dissatisfaction with the brands they deal with. If you follow some of the wider-known brands on social media channels, their pages are often laced with negative customer comments. This is largely because there are very few other channels where customers can be heard and responded to. Many big brands now are so inaccessible to customers, that it breeds frustration and inevitably leads to a bad reputation.

It feels like many brands have been compromising good customer service and prioritising cost-cutting. It is understandable in the current climate and with so many major players disappearing during the pandemic. However, as the economy begins to recover, we predict that nurturing brand loyalty will be key to beating the competition.

Customer needs have completely changed since Covid-19 hit. New trends for shopping and interacting with brands have emerged. Staying home and making the most of technological advances in communication is here to stay. Work-life balance has shifted, so some of your customers will have more time on their hands and expect a greater investment from the brands they deal with. An emerging problem is the rising cost of living, which will force customers to think more carefully about purchases and be frugal. Brands will need to work hard to attract customers and keep them.

Whilst we talk about the dreaded competition for a moment, let’s reflect on how shopping has changed over the last decade. Already, customers have access to many more brands than ever before at their fingertips. In the future, all brands will be competing in the same space. Social media is offering much success for getting brands noticed but customers’ choices about social media can be fickle. One thing is for sure, their relationship with their phones is unlikely to wane. That is why the use of sms marketing messages is going to be essential for brands to retain customers.

For those businesses who can retain a high street presence such as restaurants, the beauty industry, and leisure facilities, location-based marketing enables sms marketing messages to be sent out to any customer within a certain mile radius of the venue to tempt them in with offers.

Cover all bases

It will be necessary to take a multi-faceted approach to marketing channels. If your current strategy is limited, you may start to see your current client base slip away. Integrating your current channels with sms marketing messages will help you to cover all bases.

Using different methods together such as email marketing and sms is a good way to boost your opt-in levels. You will have access to more data to build your database by casting your net across marketing streams. Customers will also expect cross-level promotions, discounts, and loyalty schemes. Whatever the hook you use to attract your customers, sms marketing will be the tool that keeps you at the forefront of their minds. Reminders and nudges keep you on the radar and encourage your customers to return regularly.

Getting personal

It is always important in marketing to be able to put yourself into the shoes of your intended target. Get to know how they think and feel. 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. Your sms marketing copy should hit the same vibe. Subscribers will want to know that you are there for them and that they are special – be more like a mate than a business.   

‍ In 2022, personalisation will play an even bigger part in marketing. It will become a preference for most consumers as they will get used to this kind of interaction with brands. Having this close personal relationship will enable brands to share more information and nurture customer loyalty.

4. Rise in mobile commerce means even higher conversation rates

According to IDC, The worldwide smartphone market will reach 1.38 billion units shipped in 2022, up 1.6% from the 1.36 billion units shipped in 2021. From there, shipments will hit 1.53 billion units in 2026, the final year of the forecast period, resulting in a CAGR of 2.3%. This will widen the pool of prospects for all businesses. There can be no doubt that to stay in the race, businesses need to take marketing to mobile phones.

Now that sms marketing messages are becoming more personalised our handy 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. Many businesses have already upgraded their marketing strategies and adjusted their budgets to keep up with the growing trend for sms marketing. They already know traditional methods are no longer hitting the mark and are more costly and inefficient. We predict that statistics like this are proof that sms conversion rates are going to be far superior to any other marketing efforts.

Feedback on sms marketing 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. You can be secure in the knowledge that the ownership of smartphones is only set to rise.

There is an argument for working some of the more traditional methods alongside sms messaging. Sms on its own can yield exponential ROI, but can also be a great connector. You may be thinking that sms is very basic and might struggle to match its rivals, but as well as room for 160 characters, it can include images, emojis, and gifs. There is also the option to attach links to your website, forms, or short videos.

5. Continued growth of SMS customer services.

Consumers are already vocal about customer services and are now actively seeking out brands that they can communicate with. Buyers need to have confidence in the organisations they deal with. With the rise of consumer review sites such as Trustpilot, Trip Advisor, and Which, we predict that customer services will become one of the most comparable elements of a brand by the end of 2022.

It is often said that you are only as good as your last performance. On customer service rating sites and your social media sites, your last performance is the first thing many prospects will read about you. Handling customer service issues effectively is something that companies often do not value enough. Putting in man-hours and resources to refund customers may not stand out as an ROI boost but, it’s about the customer’s lifetime value. Being accessible to deal with problems will have a direct impact on brand loyalty.

Sms can deliver surprisingly quick solutions to customer issues. Unhappy customers can usually be calmed by a real-life person. However, verbal customer interaction is naturally declining and that is not just due to cutbacks. People generally prefer not to speak on the phone, hence why texting has grown rapidly in popularity over the last decade.

As we have already touched upon, automated sms can get the ball rolling with customer services but, we predict that human-controlled responses will be sought by most end-users. Using staff to respond personally can still help you to keep down costs. There will be less unnecessary dialogue. Waiting times will be reduced and customers could be getting instant responses, which will help their relationship with your brand.

6. Continuation to rise and become a priority for marketers.

Sms marketing messages are shifting in popularity and we predict that by the end of 2022 it will become a major player in marketing strategies. The opinion previously held about sms was that it had its place for booking and appointment transactions. Aside from that it was viewed as intrusive and unwanted. We now know that with the huge surge in smartphone sales and a boost in texting, this is no longer the case. Consumers actually want to opt-in to receive deals to the palm of their hand. Sms marketing will be considered the most effective and quickest way to reach your target audience. The facility of sending in bulk also means that brands can reach as many people as they like in any country, across any network for an unbeatable low price. Sms marketing messages already outperforms any other marketing method in ROI.

Social media and influencers

Most recently social media and influencers, in particular, have been grabbing customers’ attention. With the loss of 3rd party cookies, social media may lose some of its steam. A lot of the powerful tracking follows customers whilst they browse on Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok. However, it can still work incredibly well alongside sms marketing. As 1st party cookies will still be in operation, targeted ads to social media sites based on demographics will still be used. It is those ads that finance the pages.

Ads on social media scrolls are a useful tool to drive people to opt-in and subscribe to your sms marketing messages. As well as being part of an overall campaign, you can also direct views with shortcodes and other calls to action.

Many consumers are now subscribing to lifestyle influencers. At one time influencers would promote one particular thing such as fashion, health, fitness, and baby products. Now, we are buying into the influencer as a person and the influencer has become a brand to collaborate with. For example, Stacey Soloman has become a hit with followers for a variety of reasons. Her social media career kicked off with a pregnancy and the baby days that followed. From here people are completely invested in her life no matter what she is doing. She is now associated with fashion labels, home renovations, parenting, decluttering and organising, weddings, and seasonal decorating. Whatever Stacey does, people will follow and copy in an attempt to bask in her glow.

Influencers are going to get more powerful because of the demand for them. However, as people become more invested, they are driving influencing as a tool. They may look for their favourite brands to collaborate with their favourite celebrities. It will help to win the trust of your subscribers. We predict that for influencing to remain a good tool marketers will have to up the ante. As subscribers demand a more personalised approach, using influencers in an sms marketing message campaign could help to increase opt-in levels. Subscribers could receive regular updates about what their favourite influencer is promoting, links to videos, and discounts on the influencer’s favourite items. Sms messages could even appear to be sent from the influencer.

6. The end for cookies

By the end of 2023, websites will no longer be able to make use of 3rd party cookies. This is a response to the many consumers who are now actively rejecting cookies when browsing and using ad blockers to prevent them from receiving targeted ads. Google has already withdrawn its support for 3rd party cookie collectors.

Cookies have been an extremely useful tool for marketers. They have enabled them to collect vital data about their target market and existing customers. The data is then used to shape their future service and advertising methods. Without the use of cookies, brands will have to find other ways to deepen relationships with customers and growing subscribers will be a priority.

Many shoppers will miss cookies and the convenience they provide. Tracking habits and interests can streamline the shopping experience, cutting down on searching. For example, if you had recently booked flight tickets to Canada, you would likely welcome hotel suggestions or excursions. This will be where mobile marketing can come in. In the absence of targeted ads, these customers will welcome your communication. You can begin to meet their needs in a more personal way. Remember that unlike website tracking, which some people feel is underhand and spammy, sms marketing subscribers have opted in to hear from you.

According to Digital Affair, businesses are advised to invest in advanced data platforms to connect customer data and get a wider view of their profiles. At TextAnywhere we offer a secure and easy-to-use platform to store all of your customer data. Our platform will allow you to take a deeper dive into the profiles of your customers and subscribers. You will have the facility to target your sms marketing campaigns to a particular audience at any time.

Creating and maintaining good loyalty programs will become vitally important to collect data. When customers agree to join loyalty schemes, you have the opportunity with their knowledge and consent to use their data to grow your customer profiles. Sms messages can facilitate the use of exclusive offers for your subscribers to tempt them to join your loyalty schemes.

E-receipts are another growing trend for 2022. Most high street retailers are offering this facility. For the customer, it can ease the process of returns and promotes confidence in the purchase. For the retailer, it’s another clever way to tempt them to subscribe to personalised email or sms marketing.

So you have seen our mobile marketing predictions for 2022, allow us to summarise the benefits of backing sms marketing this year:

  • It’s fast and can directly reach your target audience in seconds – leaving traditional marketing efforts standing.   
  • It’s the most cost-efficient method of marketing you will find.   
  • Customers are driving companies toward SMS marketing because they prefer it to any other mode of communication.   
  • It’s trackable so companies can measure the rate of engagement within a few minutes.   
  • There can be two-way communication, meaning that with clever additions to the format, recipients will be able to reply or click through to links to your website or contact form.   
  • SMS marketing messages can be personalised, so businesses can use the recipient’s name or include dates and times.  
  • There are no limits to how many people you can send it out to. With Bulk SMS marketing, you can send messages out to hundreds and thousands of people, anywhere in the world, and across any network.   
  • To optimise the customer experience, all the subscribers should have consented to an opt-in option. All professional businesses offer an opt-out option on every marketing text message. For example, to stop receiving these text messages, reply with “STOP” at any time.  
  • To optimise your schedule, you can use automated messages via an SMS automation service.

With Text Anywhere, you can expect to face no hidden charges. We are proud to offer our customers transparent pricing options at competitive prices. You can easily track your campaigns using our SMS delivery reporting software. Our API has been developed with the industry’s highest standard to work well with your existing software. We are ISO27001 accredited and are world-class in our field of expertise. We can guarantee you quality, safety, and efficiency. We are experts at what we do and have a library of genuine case studies and testimonials from our already satisfied customers. We are one of the UK’s leading SMS providers, so you are in safe hands.   

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