Welcome to another episode of The Defiant Business Podcast, Season 3: The Future of Marketing. Today we’re going to talk about why you should care about SMS marketing, particularly B2B SMS marketing.
I know a lot of B2B marketers are still looking at SMS marketing like, “Hmm, can I really market my business through SMS?” Well, it requires the marketer to be a little more creative.
If you’re not a marketer by title, but you:
- Own your own consulting or digital service firm
- Contribute to the marketing in any way
- Are a solopreneur
Then congratulations, you’re also a marketer. Just like you’re also the sales person! And you’re also sometimes an amateur accountant until you pack up all of your paperwork and send it off to a real accountant, am I right?
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Why Care About B2B SMS Marketing?
Your Clients Read Your Texts
So why should you care about SMS marketing? Well, 98% of text messages are read by the end of the day. Emails have only a 20% open rate. On average, we do a lot better here at DTSQ with our open rates, but we’re not at 98%. I think that’s because people have largely gotten used to ignoring or putting off emails.
They’re More Likely to Respond
B2B marketers have increased their use of SMS marketing by 197% between 2015 and 2017. That is huge growth, but you have to consider that that number was pretty small to start with. So the number of B2B marketers that are engaging in SMS marketing is still very small, which means that there’s plenty of opportunity for you to get in on the action!
SMS engagement rates are 6-8 times higher than with email marketing, so you also have a 6-8 times higher chance of them responding. Oh my goodness!
How many times have you asked your audience to respond to you in an email, and they never do? Well, with an SMS, they’re way more likely to!
Is SMS Marketing Spam?
I feel like that is what people initially think of when they think of SMS marketing. B2B marketers definitely don’t want to spam people. If you engage in SMS marketing, you aren’t the same as the person who sends those healthcare notifications to your phone.
Asking for Permission Is Key
SMS marketing is not spam. The people receiving your SMS marketing will opt in. They will say, “Yes, please send me text messages.” You just have to get their permission, just like with email.
So no, don’t take all the phone numbers off of your business cards, put them into your email/SMS marketing platform, and start sending text messages to people! Don’t do that. Double down on your email list by getting their phone numbers.
If you’ve come up with something really clever, it just makes sense that you would send out an email letting your audience know about your SMS marketing.
Whatever it is, you want to make it good. You want to use an SMS lead magnet, and then it just makes sense that they would give you their phone numbers. Then they sign up for your campaign, and then you send those text messages.
How Do You Use B2B SMS Marketing for Your Consulting/Service Firm?
That’s a fantastic question, and I’ve come up with a few ideas that I’m very excited to use for myself!
Address Their Biggest Issues
You can create SMS courses/challenges as lead magnets that address your prospect’s biggest issues. Show them that you can help them via text, and they’ll want to see what you can do one-on-one.
For example, we created a LinkedIn “Make Your Profile Awesome” ebook, that also gives the people who download it an option to learn how to create engaging LinkedIn content in our email course.
After that, their second bonus for downloading the ebook is a 10-day LinkedIn SMS challenge, where I have crafted specific, bite-sized instructions that will help anybody who uses them explode their LinkedIn engagement!
You know, when you get out there and engage, the law of reciprocity happens and people start to engage with you.
Another thing that you could do is create SMS sequences that follow on microlearning experiences for any client workshops that you give. Yes, I know, this one isn’t technically marketing, but it does improve your customer experience (CX).
In addition to this workshop, you can also upsell your client on microlearning. Let them know that everybody who takes part in the workshop will be part of a 30-day microlearning experience. You could say that Monday-Friday they will receive an SMS message reminding them of certain things that they learned during the workshop. This would allow your workshop participants to apply those in the workspace and at home.
This is an easy way to add additional value after the workshop is over, and you only have to build it once! Amazing.
Additionally, you could create more complex, follow-up, automated workflows for your list. For example, if a contact doesn’t click a link in an email after 4 days, send a follow-up text with the link.
So if you create a new blog post and you’ve already gotten permission to send them marketing text messages, then you could follow up with a text message with that link. You could just say, “Hey, I thought that you might have missed seeing this blog post. It’s about X, Y, Z. Very important for you. You should read this.”
Don’t forget, the art is always in the followup. They’re probably reading email on their phone anyways, so the text just gives them the link.
More email marketing platforms are integrating SMS marketing capability. At DTSQ we use Sendinblue to create our email and SMS campaigns, and here’s the link in case you want to check that out! [<– Yes, that is an affiliate link, and I may receive a small commission if you sign up, but this doesn’t affect your payment amount at all.]