Digital Holiday Trends – How SMS Marketing Will Make Registers Ring

Santa’s sleigh will be filled with smartphones this year, which is good news if you are an advertiser or an affiliate. Mobile marketing is well on its way to becoming the preferred channel for many US consumers to connect with brands. Those that get in early will have the advantage.

Until recently I was the VP Business Development for the largest performance based mobile ad network in the US, and as such I have been able to chart the meteoric rise in interest in mobile marketing from merchants, retailers and consumers. What seemed to work was connecting with mobile users through their phones.

Not so much through apps, but through mobile websites that collect information which is later followed up on with additional messaging, much of it coming in the form of text messaging. Mobile Marketer has reported that over 95% of sms messages get read. Additionally, research by Hipcricket last year shows that 83 percent of consumers are still waiting for a favorite, trusted brand to market to them via their mobile phone.

For both affiliates and merchants, text messaging needs to be a solid part of your digital campaign strategy this Holiday.

While many consumers will use mobile to search and find local coupons, many more will find what they want on mobile and finish the transaction on their desktop. But because of the device limitations and lack of a mobile wallet (like Amazon and eBay have used to rack up over $1bn each in the last 12 months) many advertisers will miss out on the chance to capture those users coming to their site (mobile enabled or not).

The use of SMS text messaging can be the answer to solve this. Text messaging campaigns are highly effective when applied correctly. They can:

  • alert subscribers to sales and discounts
  • be used for order confirmations or shipping changes
  • push end users towards mobile coupons
  • conduct surveys and sweepstakes
  • use for “groupon” type promotions
  • keep your brand top of mind with useful tips and links
  • drive calls to phone rooms

You can of course get as creative as you want, the bottom line is that consumers read their text messages like 90% or more of the time. Compare that to the less than 20% open rates for email.

If you want to get started fast you can use a shared short code that can be set up in as little as three days and for less than you would imagine.

Merchants, you can send emails to your list asking them to opt into your “Text Message Club”. Once they confirm you can ask them to self-select for different keywords (i.e. Text Deals to 55555 or Text Sweeps to 55555, etc.). Letting them self-select allows you to tightly target the messages and be more relevant. It’s only 160 characters so it is actually less work than email and way higher open rates.

The link in the text can be to a mobile enabled site, ask for their email (and follow up with them through that channel) or to a phone number where they can finish the transaction. You can also display the Text Message Club on your website, in emails, on social media sites, etc. The goal is to get them opted in so you can market to them all year long through their always on, always with them device. If you do not have a mobile enabled version of your website, you are missing anywhere from 3% to 12% of your traffic, and that number is only going to go up.

Affiliates, you can use this in the same way as a merchant, but you more than likely you will not get traffic to a mobile site unless you have one of the top 2 positions in Google mobile search. The better way is to use your existing database and solicit them to receive daily offers through their phone.

If this all sounds a bit confusing or too daunting, not to worry. I have found one of the simplest and easiest to use SMS marketing solutions out there for getting text campaigns going fast. The site can get you up and running within a day or so. This way you won’t be missing the boat when it comes to this Holiday (and you’ll be even better prepared for it next season since you will have some data to review and make better decisions with).

Visit Trumpia today and see how their easy to use interface makes getting started in SMS marketing simple.

Visit the site and make sure to check out their super low rates for getting started.

Happy Holidays and let’s get those mobile campaigns going. Consumers are wanting it, you just have to give it to them.


Jim Lillig, is an accomplished online marketing professional and entrepreneur. His eclectic assemblage of companies and projects gives a new insight into eCommerce tactics and strategy. A pioneering online marketer, Jim has pushed the envelope and found the edges of online marketing to be fertile ground for those who are willing to be bold and set a trail of success. He has authored many performance marketing articles as well as being a featured speaker and panelist at some of the industry’s largest events. Uniquely qualified with over 20 years of online marketing experience and 35 years of brand marketing know-how, Jim delivers innovative fresh approaches for both B2B and B2C clients.

View all posts by jimlillig →