Prabhat Kumar Singh, COO, Enterprise Services, ACL Mobile tells BusinessWorld why SMS is an important Marketing Tool during Festive Season
Why SMS Should be on Top of Your Check List While Finalizing Your Marketing Budget This Festive Season?
While December is a golden goose for US and UK markets, India witnesses record breaking sales in the month of October and November. Regardless, as marketers and entrepreneurs, we all need to up our game ahead of the festive season.
As the end of the year approaches, we can see a frenzy building up with retailer and many other businesses to woo customers Festivities and holiday is a golden opportunity for businesses to push for their products and services. While December is a golden goose for US and UK markets, India witnesses record breaking sales in the month of October and November. Regardless, as marketers and entrepreneurs, we all need to up our game ahead of the festive season.
The Unique Benefits Offered by SMS Marketing during the Festive Season
At the risk of sounding repetitive, I would like to make the fact known that SMSs enjoy a whopping 98% of open rate. Given all the marketing doorways available for an organization, it is needless to say that SMSs offer the maximum penetration and visibility for brands. Since SMSs are so much intimate and directly reach users, the same are preferred by brands over email and marketing and social media notifications. Looking at the way how busy the prospective customers are going to be, celebrating the festivities, navigating their way across the increase traffic jams, it is further advisable to use SMSs.
Another fact that should be leveraged by the marketers looking for deeper reach to the prospects is that the 90 per cent of the messages are opened within the first 3 minutes of receiving the same. Hence, SMSs work in the favour of brands by the very virtue of its nature and reach, irrespective of the services offered. However, the same potential can be strategically utilized to push for decision making at an impulse.
Firstly, buying over smartphones has become popular in the best few years. The same trend is going to increase, given the busier lives we are living and the festive season adding to the woes of commuters. Besides, by including a link directly in the SMS, brands can further optimize their SMS outreach. The link may either lead the users to a download button or a landing page of the ecommerce, depending upon the motives behind the outreach programme.
Secondly, there is a unique way in which we can integrate SMS marketing with increasing the offline outreach. This feature would particularly sound interesting for brands with their offline stores, restaurants, pubs, shopping malls and the likes. Since the SMSs are read within first three minutes of receiving the same, offline retail stores and other outlets may send out creative messages, welcoming the users for a visit. We also need to consider the fact that during the festive season, an end term user is much less likely to browse through emails and social media posts. If at all, the activity would be limited to priority e-mails and posts on social networks. However, a text messages breaches all these barriers, directly getting the word out without fail.
Offering a welcome drink or a discount on the order is another way of rapidly increasing the sale for the restaurants. In fact, promoting festive discounts via SMSs can be further explored by different businesses. Along with festive greetings, brands can also send across messages regarding clearance sales, availability of stock – or the stock which is rapidly approaching the sold out, hence fuelling the impulsive decision making, opening or closing hours, especially if you are keeping the store open for later hours during the festive season.
Lastly, do understand that SMS, like email, users need to select to receive messages. One way of getting more sign-ups for SMS notification, is by offering special discounts. You may also simply offer to notify users regarding sales and offers, should they just drop in the number. Furthermore, to make the users feel respected, do give them a choice between receiving daily notifications or weekly insider stuff. On that note, I would sign off! Wishing you all a joyous and prosperous festive season ahead!
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