How Should Political Digital Marketers Use AI?
October 2023 | by Emily Karrs
Marketing Our Favorite Tools
For years, email has been the go-to for marketers trying to reach their audiences. But the rise in smartphone usage and oversaturation of inboxes has many marketers shifting gears, opting for a method that takes less time and generates higher engagement rates – SMS.
SMS is the process of sending marketing messages to users via text. It is one of the most powerful ways to communicate with your audience.
SMS has become a quick and cost-effective marketing platform. But, because it lacks the decades of data and market research that email has, some marketers are hesitant to integrate SMS into their own strategies, missing out on countless opportunities to communicate with audiences more efficiently.
We don’t want you to make that mistake. Email has dominated marketing for years, but SMS is on pace to compete with email by 2020. Here’s why:
Text messaging is the most used feature on a cell phone and the most used form of communication in the world. Unlike emails which can sit unopened in an inbox for months, reports show that recipients open 98 percent of all text messages. In comparison, open rates for emails sit around 20 percent.
Not only do most users open text messages, they do it in record time. Text messages convey a sense of urgency, and 95 percent of text messages are read within 3 minutes of sending. In a world that has become accustomed to instant gratification, marketing doesn’t get more instant than SMS.
Besides being virtually instantaneous, SMS is also more action-driven than email. Email click through rates (CTR) are abysmally low, averaging a mere 2.9 percent, while SMS has an average CTR of a whopping 36 percent. If your goal is to drive action, SMS is the clear choice.
When sending emails to a huge list of recipients, marketers run the risk of being flagged as spam. Thanks to the Telephone Consumer Protection Act, text message marketing remains spam-free. The days of spam-free texting may be numbered, however, thanks to peer-to-peer texting which allows marketers to send messages to users who have not opted in to receive their content.
When it comes to email, the more sends per month the better. With SMS, marketers need only send 3-5 per month, because the engagement and conversion levels are so much higher. SMS messages have strict word limits, only providing enough space for critically important information, as opposed to the unimportant “filler content” used in emails.
SMS is the one channel where most people still get predominantly personal correspondence. All other channels are saturated with messages that people are not actually interested in, and ultimately end up unopened or in the trash. Because it is still highly personal, we value each message on text more and more.
Other mediums may still be the best choice for reaching your marketing goals, but it’s important to know the value that SMS brings to the table to ensure that you are not overlooking a valuable marketing medium.
While you're here, check out these related articles: