Evolving forms of advertising

Customers of the 21st century are definitely more aware of what marketing and advertising mean. They can easily recognize invasive persuasion. Widespread means of promotion tend to bore them, and thus – become completely ineffective. SMS marketing falls under the idea of innovative ​​advertising. Up until this point, it hasn’t been a particularly popular tool. However, the situation is making an u-turn now. The use of SMS marketing raises many questions. Below we listed answers to some of them, for example: What exactly is SMS marketing? Can every entrepreneur take benefits from this form of advertising? How SMS marketing works?  How to make good use of SMS marketing? Is it worth considering this mobile marketing tool for every business model?

SMS marketing – what is it?

SMS marketing is one of many mobile marketing tools. It involves sending customers an SMS (text message), MMS (multimedia message) or VMS (audio message) to their smartphones. Such messages usually contain an advertisement for companies’ products or services, being followed by information on current promotions, discounts and the like. SMSes that do not entail any marketing function, relying solely on providing some information, are also becoming increasingly popular.

Marketing SMS – legal regulations

In accordance with the Act on Providing Services by Electronic Means, sending SMSes may constitute communication between enterprises and customers, which falls under the definition of advertising. However, companies that decide to send marketing or commercial information through the use of SMS marketing, are only allowed to send such messages to people who had previously given their consent to it. Thus, SMSs, MMSs or VMSs usually go to those customers who have already used the company’s services and declared their willingness to receive notifications. SMS marketing can be therefore used by any entrepreneur, provided that they receive clear consent from the client.

The history of SMS marketing

SMS marketing was created less than thirty years ago – back in the early 1990s. It’s appearance is connected in an obvious way with the spread of mobile phones, and subsequently – smartphones. Interestingly enough, current number of SMS, MSM and VMS messages among individual users is constantly decreasing. On the other hand, this type of messages sent by enterprises with marketing or informational content, experiences fast growth.

SMS campaigns

SMS campaigns may be considered a type of one-way communication – the company sends a message to the customer and the customer cannot respond to it. SMSes are sent to customers from the company’s database. Informing the client about current promotions may be a good example of such activity. Thus, SMS campaigns perform a clear marketing function.

SMS notifications

SMS notifications, just like SMS campaigns, are a type of one-way communication where the customer receives a message from the company and cannot provide feedback. SMS notifications bear an informative function – they serve as a reminder for a visit, inform about the delivery of a package on a specific date and time, give hints for getting to the destination etc.

Bilateral SMS communication

Bilateral SMS communication allows the company to communicate with the customer, but at the same time provides the customer with a way to respond and give their feedback. The customer may receive brief information about a product followed by a call to action. Usually it takes a form of a question whether they want to learn more about the product or not. A „Yes” reply allows marketers to separate customers interested in the offer from those who are not. Bilateral SMS communication becomes a solution that allows the company to filter its customers and save time. It brings about a very important function for marketing and selection.

Make the best out of SMS marketing

In order to make good use of SMS marketing, you need to personalize all the messages and adapt them to the clients’ needs. Databases provide all information about customers, which might bring huge value for future actions. Most important facts are: gender, age, preferences, and consumer behavior on a particular transaction. Only by acknowledging individual factors, companies are able to tailor their messages to customers’ needs. Staying away from this rule puts the company at risk of a customer treating their advertising as a spam. It is always an extremely undesirable situation, generating the sense of distrust for the company. Any further promotion will then result in more losses than profits.

SMS marketing – is it worth considering such a form of mobile marketing?

Implementing SMS marketing within enterprises may prove to be an effective solution for several reasons. Firstly, it is still a fairly recent form of advertising, with the potential to attract the attention of its recipients. Secondly, texting is rather inexpensive, so the company will not be exposed to excessive costs. Last but not least, customers’ approval for brief  forms of advertising  becomes more and more visible. SMS marketing definitely fits this trend. The only thing entrepreneurs need to remember when deciding to use SMS marketing, is to implement an individualized marketing concept. Such attitude gives expected results, without the risk of leading companies’ efforts astray.