06 Sep Ways that SMS wins over Email
Any digital marketing strategy has a goal that aims to reach out to new and existing customers and provide them with information about exciting products and services. While email marketing remains the dominant form of outbound digital marketing, many companies turn to text messaging instead. So, what differences exist between SMS and email, and which one works best for your needs?
Some Common Email Drawbacks
Emails can do plenty of good in terms of a marketing campaign, but open rates are steadily declining. As people’s usage habits change, you have to adapt to them. Let’s review some common issues you may encounter when using email as your primary form of communication.
Emails Are Too Long
People have very little time in their day to dedicate to non-relevant emails. They may see your communication but decide that they’ll look at it later, which they’ll never do. An added concern stems from the practice of including too much information in an email, which results in long-winded messages that push customers away.
While it’s possible to reign in the lengthiness of marketing emails, many marketers find that it takes a lot of restraint to do so. Finding the balance between information and length can prove difficult and often requires some trial and error to get right.
Low Open Rates
Fewer people open marketing emails than ever before. And of those that do, even fewer will actually click on a link in the email. Currently, the open rate for email stands at around 22%, and the rate of people clicking on links falls even lower to a shocking 4%. That means that for every 100 emails you send, you’ll get four people clicking on your call to action.
The volume of emails worldwide continues to increase dramatically, with current surveys showing around 280 billion emails being sent and received every day. Experts expect this number to rise even higher in the future.
This means that the average person receives around 100 emails per day. Most people have to prioritise certain emails, such as critical work emails, over marketing emails, which often go unread. It’s these high email volumes that contribute to the decline of open and click-through rates, and the problem will only get worse in the future.
Email Marketing Is Resource-Intensive
A good email marketing campaign requires tremendous time and effort. Not only do you have to craft engaging and valuable content, but you also have to schedule your emails to avoid spamming your customers. You face a delicate balance that requires much trial and error, and even when you have the right mix, you’ll still need a
dedicated email marketing team working full time on your campaign.
Why SMS Is Great for Customer Engagement
Better Open Rates
People always have their mobile phones with them, and they often provide a welcome distraction when waiting in a queue. The current SMS open rate is 98%, and the average click-through rate is 45%. These numbers rank significantly higher than those of email and represent an exciting, untapped opportunity for marketers and businesses.
Text Messaging Is Concise
One of the main benefits of SMS over email is that text messages have a character limit. Any messaging needs to be concise and impactful without wasting the customers’ time. It provides an excellent opportunity for your marketing team to stretch their creative muscles and make a strong brand impression with potential customers.
It’s Easier to Make Communication Personal
Most high-end SMS marketing tools allow you to customise your SMS to your customer. You can apply marketing information like demographics, geographic location, and buying preferences to tailor and adapt your marketing campaign to a specific audience. Even better, you can target multiple audiences with multiple customised messages, which makes text marketing a great return on investment.
When it comes to offering time-sensitive deals, you need to use SMS. People are much more inclined to read an SMS the moment they receive it, compared to the delay in reading and responding to emails. This time frame makes it easier to provide highly relevant content without it feeling dated or expired.
Text Messaging Is Affordable
Due to the low character limit, crafting an SMS rather than an email takes less time. You don’t need to worry about layout or design choices and can focus on crafting high-quality, impactful content instead. When you combine this lower initial commitment with the higher response rate of SMS vs. email, you can easily see how a text messaging campaign is much more affordable.
Combining SMS and Email
While we use the term SMS vs. email, that doesn’t mean that you should limit yourself to one choice exclusively. SMS and email marketing campaigns can be quite complementary and synergistic.
Emails excel at non-time-sensitive communication. They can provide much more detail and information than an SMS, and you can spice them up with smart layouts, multiple links, and high-end content.
On the other hand, you can generate a sense of urgency with text messages while helping you keep the information brief and to the point.
When you use email and text marketing simultaneously, you can capitalise on the strengths of both while avoiding their weaknesses. We generally recommend that businesses start with SMS communications and then use the response to tailor the more involved email campaign.
If you find that your customers don’t respond to your email marketing campaign, you can use timed SMSs to create a sense of urgency and remind customers of the information already provided in the email. SMSs can help cut through customer reluctance, and a sense of urgency poses a great incentive to jump on a deal or promotion.
As with any type of outbound marketing strategy, SMS and email marketing require a subtle touch. Providing information without overwhelming and alienating your potential customers requires a fine balance. TouchSMS has helped hundreds of Australian businesses craft their first SMS campaign and improve their marketing ROI.
If you’re curious about what SMS marketing can do for you or whether you should consider SMS vs. email or use both, get in touch with us online today!