By Dan Slavin, CodeBroker
If the answer is yes, then you’ll be interested in what we hear from other retailer and brand marketers who are searching for a new SMS marketing solution.
Every potential new client with whom we speak tells us the same thing – that evaluating SMS marketing solutions definitely are not easy. The reason…there are so many SMS marketing solutions out there and, on the surface, they can be hard to differentiate.
In this post, I thought I’d share five of the most important criteria we hear from marketers who are looking to bring a new text marketing solution into their organizations. For the complete list, along with some helpful tips, I invite you to download this paper: How to Evaluate Text Message Marketing Software.
1. Ease of use
Marketers want a self-serve SMS marketing solution so they can quickly implement campaigns in response to market conditions. But, in order to do this, they want a solution that, first and foremost, is easy to use. According to the mobile marketers with whom we work, ease-of-use comes down to two factors: 1) an intuitive interface, and 2) strong vendor support should they need assistance.
2. An SMS marketing vendor that can grow your SMS list fast while ensuring list quality
Many text marketing vendors will tell you that they can help you to quickly grow your SMS list but, more often than not, the quality of the list suffers. Most text marketing solutions have a list sign-up process that goes like this:
- User texts in a keyword
- User receives a text message to confirm
- User replies by texting back a “Y”
- User receives a message back confirming their opt-in
And the user is now on the list. The only problem is that all the marketer has only a phone number, with no demographic data whatsoever. It’s like just an email address.
Marketers now realize that they need more than just a phone number that opted in. Marketers want to collect demographic info, such as name, zipcode, and other info that will help make their marketing more effective. And they want a more robust sign-up process that, not only facilitates the ability to quickly build SMS lists, but also has demographic capture as part of the process – with an easy-to-use form that the recipient fills out during the opt-in process.
3. Tight integration with a mobile coupon solution
CodeBroker’s customers have found that SMS text coupons are highly effective at improving customer engagement and driving purchases. According to a recent research report, SMS text coupons delivered via text message drive high levels of purchases and urgency, with 25% planned redemption within three days, and 60% planned redemption within one week.
4. Works with your marketing infrastructure
It’s mission critical that your text message marketing software has APIs to enable the system to easily share data with your other systems – CRM, loyalty, analytics, and websites – with minimal IT support.
5. A true partner that helps you become successful
With many SMS marketing solutions, marketers are on their own. Many solutions are quite technical, or the marketer may be new to SMS message marketing and, for these reasons, marketers tell us that they want an SMS message marketing vendor who will help make them successful.
From project support, to advice on best practices, to proactively ensuring TCPA and CTIA compliance, marketers increasingly are looking for a text marketing solution that is more than a software product…but one that also includes planning and implementation support.
We at CodeBroker always encourage marketers to take a hands-on approach when assessing new text message marketing software – to get their “hands dirty” with the system before making a decision.
If you’re in the process of looking for a new SMS marketing solution, I invite you to download How to Evaluate Text Message Marketing Software for more help, including a helpful vendor checklist.