Editor's note: The following is a guest post from Dan Slavin, CEO and co-founder of CodeBroker.
As mobile marketing continues to evolve, there's a lot of focus on apps and social media — but text messaging is still a vital conduit to consumers. Texting works on any type of mobile phone; a good thing, considering that feature phones accounted for 21% of all global mobile phone shipments last year at 396 million devices, according to Strategy Analytics.
Many studies report text message open rates of more than 95%, and of the customers who opt in to receive text messages from a brand, 91% find the ones they receive somewhat or very useful, according to a Salesforce survey. Our own customers have told us that text messaging is the best way to drive urgency.
But how do you build that text message marketing list and entice people to sign up in the first place? Here are five proven tips you can put into practice today to increase your signups.
Leverage your locations
Brick-and-mortar stores offer a powerful and direct avenue to drive signups. Consider providing incentives for stores and regions that drive the highest number of opt-ins. Modest bonuses, vouchers or fun team activities can be enough to engage employees. Stoking a competitive atmosphere between locations or among staff can be an effective way to get employees focused on securing those signups.
You also need to seize opportunities to advertise your program. Whether it's shelf tags, end caps, the checkout line or help desk, make your customers aware of your SMS program. You may even consider a promotion rack and external signage on the storefront; POS can be the simplest way to recruit SMS signups. To that end, make sure to train your store associates to fully explain and promote the text message program to customers in the store.
Prime your website
Make sure that you are prominently promoting signups to your text message mobile marketing list on your home page, where it generally makes sense to promote alongside your email signup section. It's also effective to add a check box at the end of the checkout process, where customers can simply click to opt in.
Use social media and related blogs
Going beyond your website, you should craft posts for social media channels like Facebook and Twitter that explain precisely how to sign up for your SMS program and highlight the benefits. You can also request posts on blogs that cover your brand and employ deals to promote signups and drive more traffic.
Consolidate with your loyalty program
It's logical to use SMS to encourage loyalty program registrations and SMS signups at the same time. Using an example like Smart Join makes things easy and convenient for customers by offering a one-stop signup shop that can encompass your SMS marketing list, email list, rewards program (including issuing a rewards number and optional digital loyalty card) and a welcome mobile coupon — all from a single form submission.
Create calls to action
Consider your existing marketing materials and on-demand coupons and content as additional channels for signup promotion. You should create calls to action within your emails, at the bottom of print ads and billboards or as part of the coupons you send out. Tell consumers who they liked a particular offer where to sign up for more. Pooling your marketing efforts like this enables you to increase your influence and grow a text messaging marketing list much faster without spending additional funds.
Make no mistake, increasing a text message mobile marketing list can have a tangible impact on a company's bottom line, as text messaging is often an important channel among your target audience. When we surveyed 1,207 U.S. consumers for the CodeBroker Mobile Loyalty Study, we found that 35% prefer text messages, 18.5% wanted a mobile app and 15% prefer Apple or Android Pay to receive information about loyalty programs they already belong to.
There are a lot of effective ways to grow a text message marketing list faster with cost-effective methods. You can see an immediate increase simply by making sure you're fully leveraging all of your existing marketing channels.