Creative SMS marketing campaigns: Tips and examples
Don’t blend in. Learn about creative SMS marketing techniques that could help your messages stand out.
By Kelsie Anderson
Standing out from the crowd and engaging with customers on a personal level has become critical for businesses.
With crowded markets, people's attention spans dwindling, and an ever-increasing array of marketing channels vying for time, you need to find innovative, effective ways to grab your audience's attention.
Leveraging creative SMS marketing—a powerful tool that allows businesses to connect with customers in a highly personalized, timely, and interactive manner—is one way you might be able to stand out.
Take advantage of insights from 1 billion+ messages with our '2023 Guide to SMS and MMS'. Download your copy to learn from Telnyx experts and shape your ideal SMS/MMS strategy.
Creative SMS marketing isn’t just about sending generic promotions or updates.
Instead, it's about crafting tailored, engaging, and memorable content that resonates with customers and encourages them to take action.
By integrating creative elements, personalization, and interactivity into SMS campaigns, businesses can forge deeper connections with their audience, drive customer loyalty, and ultimately boost sales.
In this blog post, we'll explore the importance of SMS marketing and share some creative techniques you can use to help your business rise above the competition and thrive in today's crowded marketing landscape.
The power of SMS marketing
SMS marketing, or text message marketing, is a direct marketing method that involves sending promotional messages to customers via text messages. As mobile phone usage continues to grow, SMS marketing offers a unique opportunity for businesses to connect with their audience.
High open and engagement rates
SMS messages have an exceptionally high open rate, with most estimates ranging between 90% and 98%. This open rate is significantly higher than the open rates for email marketing, which typically range between 15% and 25%. Moreover, people usually read text messages within minutes of receiving them, with 95% of messages read and responded to within three minutes of receipt. People’s high receptivity to text messages leads to faster response times and higher engagement rates.
Direct, personal communication
SMS marketing allows businesses to establish direct and personal communication with their customers. For instance, you can tailor text messages to individual preferences and behaviors, which helps create a more personalized experience. This personalized approach can foster stronger customer relationships and build brand loyalty.
Compared to other marketing channels, SMS marketing is relatively cost-effective. It doesn't require significant investments in design or content creation, and sending bulk text messages is generally affordable. The low cost of text campaigns makes SMS marketing an especially attractive option for small- to medium-sized businesses with limited marketing budgets—or any business looking for a low-investment, high-return campaign.
As more people rely on their mobile devices for internet browsing and online shopping, businesses need to adapt their marketing strategies accordingly. SMS marketing is inherently mobile-friendly and allows businesses to reach customers directly on their smartphones, ensuring their messages are accessible and convenient.
Easy integration with other marketing channels
You can easily integrate SMS marketing with other marketing channels like email, social media, and online advertising. This multi-channel approach helps businesses create a cohesive and consistent customer experience across various touchpoints.
SMS marketing enables businesses to communicate with customers in real time. This near-instantaneous communication is particularly valuable for time-sensitive promotions or critical updates requiring immediate attention. Real-time communication can help businesses stay top-of-mind and drive immediate action from their audience.
5 examples of creative SMS marketing techniques
With all its possible benefits, you might be wondering how to get started with SMS marketing. Below, we’ll give you some examples of techniques you can use to execute creative—and successful—SMS marketing campaigns.
1. Send abandoned cart follow-ups
Over 85% of people shopping from a mobile device will abandon their carts. However, nearly a third of shoppers will end up purchasing their abandoned items at a later date. By sending follow-up messages to customers, you can remind them about the items they wanted to buy, as well as offer assistance in case they encountered any issues during the checkout process. Bonus points if those messages are personalized.
For example, a furniture store could send a message that includes the name of the shopper, reminding them that they haven’t yet purchased the coffee table in their cart. The message could also include a link to or number for customer support in case that customer had trouble checking out.
Results: Timely, personalized abandoned cart SMS campaigns can help you increase your online conversion rate.
2. Offer personalized discounts
Speaking of personalization, sending personalized discounts can help you stay engaged with customers.
For example, suppose you’re an athletic apparel company. You might send messages featuring special deals, product recommendations, and shoe care tips to customers who have been shopping for shoes lately or who regularly purchase your shoes. You can repeat this technique with different segments of your audience—advertising running gear to joggers or weightlifting gloves to CrossFit enthusiasts.
Results: This approach can help you connect with your audience, foster brand loyalty, and increase sales.
3. Hold limited-time sales
You can leverage the fact that SMS is a real-time communication platform by creating a sense of urgency with your messages. Advertising limited-time sales via SMS can help your brand stay top-of-mind with consumers and give them a reason to purchase from you during a specific window.
Of course, targeting subsets of your audience can improve your odds of success. For example, an end-of-summer sale on kayaks might be more interesting to a water sports enthusiast than a long-distance skier.
Results: By sending targeted text messages to subscribers, you can drive more traffic to your website, increase customer engagement, and boost sales during promotional periods.
4. Provide helpful content
Creating and sharing helpful, interesting content can, of course, increase sales by reminding subscribers about your products. But perhaps more importantly, it can also increase trust in and affinity for your brand. In fact, 65% of consumers say they feel more positively about a brand after engaging with their educational content. You can leverage those warm fuzzy feelings by sharing helpful content in an SMS campaign.
For example, a plant store can provide plant care tips based on customers’ recent purchases or browsers’ interests. Follow that up with a personalized discount on plants of interest, and you’ll be selling out of succulents in no time.
Results: By offering valuable content paired with tailored offers, you can drive customer engagement, increase sales, and strengthen brand loyalty.
5. Showcase your personality
Since people typically use SMS to communicate with other people they know, you can adopt a more casual, conversational tone than the one you use in more formal communications. That makes SMS the perfect platform to highlight the more fun parts of your brand’s personality. So get creative with your messaging by sprinkling in some humor or adopting a more conversational tone to create a unique, engaging experience.
Let’s say you’re a clothing store with an edgy vibe whose audience is young women in their early 20s and 30s. When you message your audience, you could speak in a more conversational tone, use slang, and include pop culture references that would make sense to them.
Results: By using a more conversational tone, you can build a stronger connection with your audience and increase sales.
Get creative with your own SMS marketing campaigns
Creative SMS marketing offers businesses a powerful way to connect with customers, build brand loyalty, and drive sales. By following best practices and implementing innovative strategies, you can create engaging and successful SMS campaigns that drive real results.
But you'll need the right tools to fully leverage the power of SMS marketing. With Telnyx’s SMS API, you can send and receive SMS messages globally, allowing you to reach your customers and subscribers wherever they might be. In addition, our automation capabilities can help you save time and stay compliant with industry standards, meaning you can send messages reliably while adhering to local regulations and guidelines.
Finally, you can choose between pay-as-you-go and volume-based pricing models, which allow most of our customers to save between 30–70% on SMS costs when switching from another provider.