1 - Collect data
Before creating your first bulk SMS campaign, you'll need to grow your contact list. Increasing your list size will dramatically improve the likelihood that your campaigns are successful while also helping you to develop a better understanding of whether texting is the right channel for your business. Thankfully, collecting data is much easier than you might have thought. Here are some of the most effective ways to collect customer telephone numbers:
- Website data capture - an ideal place to start is on your website as you can collect data in numerous ways. You can encourage customers to provide data by including a pop-up on your homepage, having a “stay informed” page or during the checkout process. Be sure to include an opt-in checkbox and consider including an incentive such as 10% off.
- Use your email list - take advantage of your existing email list by sending out a campaign that promotes the benefits of signing up to your SMS contact list. You’ll then be able to use both channels together to increase conversions.
- Competitions - running a competition on your website and social channels can help to increase your list. It’s key that you provide entrants with the choice of receiving future correspondence and that you have a prize is exciting to increase participation.
- In-store data capture - you can increase your contact list by getting your checkout staff to ask customers if they want to provide their number and opt-in. Again, you could provide an incentive to customers that sign up as well as the employee that collects the most numbers.
- Traditional advertising - direct mail, billboards and audio adverts can also be used to increase your SMS contact list. By having a five-digit short code, your customers can text you with a specific word that will automatically opt them in to receive future messages.
It's also worth noting that as well as telephone numbers, you can also request additional data from your customers. The more data that you collect, the more personalised you can make your SMS campaigns. Our dashboard allows you to upload seven columns of data (keep your numbers in the first column). Some variables to consider include names, birthday, postal address, email address, order numbers, purchase preferences and loyalty number. You can find more information on uploading your contact list here.