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80% of marketers believe that SMS is the best digital channel.

Resources & Blog

80% of marketers believe that SMS is the best digital channel.

Business texting is rising

It has been an entire year since COVID-19 changed our lives and sent the world into chaos. While it's a topic that almost everyone is sick of hearing about, how it has impacted marketing is still interesting. The initial reaction of most businesses was to scale back and pull campaign spend. An emphasis was placed on clear communication to update customers on opening hours and offer reassurance. Those who invested in SMS to provide updates came out on top.

Fast forward twelve months, and we've seen a large increase in the number of businesses that are investing in SMS. The rise in popularity can be attributed to many things, but most likely, it's because texting is direct, personal, low-cost, and easy to use. And, it wears lots of hats.

Want to send a flash sale? Go for it. Want to send an order confirmation or delivery notice? Can do. Want to collect reviews or hold a competition? Let's rock. And, texting can be a creative marketing channel too. For inspiration, check out these 12 creative ways that SMS was used in 2020. So, it's funny that there is often a notion that SMS is limited and not as flexible as some of the new channels available to marketers. It still gets the job done.

How B2C marketers are communicating

With more businesses texting customers, there is new data that we can use to promote its benefits. One survey, which does just that, was released by The Drum this month. They surveyed 166 marketers that work in B2C across the United States to find out how they communicate with customers digitally. All of the marketers surveyed worked in companies with over 1,000 employees.

The survey results show that SMS is a clear winner when it comes to digital communication. Almost 80% of respondents stated that they believe that texting works best for them when considering all of the digital channels available. Furthermore, 77% of respondents use SMS more frequently than other channels to send discounts and promotional offers. The result? They linked texting to a direct increase in revenue in 2020.

So, why SMS? Well, participants stated three reasons. The first was real-time delivery. Quick delivery provides businesses with the flexibility to be both spontaneous and reactive. Let's say that it's 5 pm on a Friday, and you had a slow sales week. You could quickly type up an SMS offer and send it to your customers. Your customers will see that offer almost instantaneously because data suggests that 90% of people read a text message within 3 minutes. Talk about a quick impact.

The second benefit listed by participants was high open rates. Anyone that has done the smallest bit of research on text marketing will know that 98% of messages are opened. If we compare that to email marketing, which has open rates of 15-25%, there is no competition. Additionally, while social media has lots of benefits, you have to fight algorithms to get your posts in front of customers.

Finally, participants listed global reach as their third reason for using SMS. Having global reach offers value because businesses can identify subscriber locations based on the country code of their mobile number. Once that data is filtered, it's then possible to send targeted messages based on their location. That's good news for businesses that might want to hold a flash sale or make a big announcement in a specific country but don't need (or want) to inform customers elsewhere.

Thanks for conducting a great survey, The Drum.

Cutomer Account manager
by Liam Quinn | Marketing Executive

Hi, I'm Liam, Marketing Executive at Reach Interactive. I have a background in international marketing and love branding, social media and seeing how companies communicate with their customers.

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