SMS Marketing 101: A Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners

SMS Marketing for beginners - An introduction to SMS, how to use it, how to start your first campaign and best practice examples.

28 August 2023

Implementing SMS Messaging into your marketing plan is perhaps the most intimate and personal way to reach your customer base.

Think about it.

Today, consumers are constantly on their phones, wearing smartwatches, having their messages come through on their desktops or linking messaging platforms to their tablets. Since the start of the global pandemic in 2020, many of our day-to-day tasks, such as online banking and grocery shopping, are carried out on mobile phones.

As a result, we now see SMS messaging campaigns achieving a 98% open rate in comparison to traditional marketing avenues such as email sitting at 20%, two metrics that are critical to consider when trying to reach your customers.

To put this in perspective, you probably wouldn’t get a 98% open rate of your family and friends’ front doors on a Thursday afternoon.

Not only do consumers have their phones glued to them most of the time, but also 80% of them check their phones within the first 15 minutes of waking up, and go on to pick up their phones on average 58 times a day.

When combining the convenience, the hours spent on phones daily and the open rates of messages, it only makes sense that as a business that you begin to touch base with your customers through SMS (not to mention the hours spent on phones daily, the open rates of messages, and the convenience to the end-user; it makes sense that businesses factor SMS messaging into their communications strategy). Currently only 11% of businesses market via SMS, so there’s a wealth of untapped potential).

Below, we will walk you through the fundamentals of SMS marketing: what it is, how it works, how to start and a few examples of best practice!

What is SMS Marketing

Firstly, SMS is a means of communication carried out on mobile phones and is an abbreviation for Short Message Service, known today as a ‘text’. SMS Marketing is a means for businesses to communicate deals, updates, discounts, events, and more with their customers directly to their phones.

Unlike other forms of marketing like Social Media, SMS Marketing is autonomous. Businesses have complete control over who receives a message, how they receive it, when they do and the content. On top of this, you have the ability to directly communicate with a targeted list of contacts, unlike with channels such as social media where you have to articulate content to overcome algorithms to reach your intended audience. 

How can small businesses use SMS Messaging

With the impressive open rate of SMS on mobiles, using text marketing as an avenue of communication with customers can really boost engagement. For small businesses in particular, this can be an effective way to connect with customers in a timely, low-cost and effective manner. As SMS is an underused channel, it offers a way to cut through the noise of competitors’ email marketing campaigns.

Here are a few ways you may use SMS marketing: 

  • Promotions
  • Announcements
  • Events
  • New products
  • Customer Services
  • Logistics

SMS offers an affordable and accessible way for businesses to reach their customers. There’s no need for expensive software, in-house expertise, or ongoing contracts – simply pay for what you use. On top of this, SMS marketing gains conversion rates varying from 19-32%, compared to 3% received from email marketing. 

How to start sending SMS Messages

Feel like you are now ready for SMS Marketing? It’s easy to start sending, so you’re in luck! 

Setting up an account for SMS Marketing on TextAnywhere is as easy as 1,2,3 …

1. Set up a TextAnywhere Account.

First, Fill in your details

Then, Verify yourself

& Bonus… you get a free trial (20 credits)

2. Build a recipient list

Add a list in from your current website


Trade something in your customers favour to incline them to opt in and give you their contact details

3. Content creation

Now, don’t hesitate, create and press send!

Best practice examples

Sales and offers

Educate your customers through…

  • Specific sales
  • Promote offers
  • Tailored details
Delivery Notifications

Inform your customers through…

  • Parcel updates
  • Delivery times
  • Delivered details

Get in touch

Send and receive a variety of SMS communications including ad hoc updates and much larger campaigns, in just a few clicks.

Start your free trial today

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  • 20 free credits
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