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What to Look For in an SMS Marketing Provider

Lindsay Tjepkema
Lindsay Tjepkema , Global Head of Content , Emarsys

Today’s marketers are definitely not at risk of losing purpose. There is now more to achieve than ever before, with seemingly less time to do it. Marketers are under incredible pressure to deliver on concrete KPIs: increasing traffic, driving leads, maximizing conversions, and ultimately pulling in revenue. The expectations placed on marketers are higher than ever, and nothing short of perfection will do.

This widening range of marketing priorities has opened the door for new technologies, designed to address new audiences, platforms, and segments.

The problem, however, is that these platforms can actually hinder a marketer’s ability to perform at the highest level. Marketers need tools at their disposal that enable them to move freely across channels without boxing them in, or hindering their ability to execute.

It’s impossible to think a marketer can perform at the highest level when he or she is switching constantly between platforms and tools. When data and metrics are also housed in multiple platforms, it’s difficult to make strategic decisions that fully impact the business as a whole. Frequently, these channel-specific tools can result in reactive decision-making and misplaced focus.

The New Mobile Marketing Experience

More marketers are recognizing the potential of a single marketing platform that allows them to deliver high-quality content and experiences to consumers, regardless of channel. With more consumers than ever before relying on mobile (the average smartphone conversion rates are up 64% compared to the average desktop conversion rates), any intuitive marketer can see where the future lies.

And, thanks to this mobile resurgence, SMS marketing is on the rise. Today’s consumers spend more time on their smartphones than ever before, and marketers are starting to take notice. Consider these quick-hit statistics:

  • SMS marketing provides 8x better customer engagement than other platforms.
  • 98% of text messages are opened within three minutes.
  • 57% of consumers would join an SMS loyalty program.

Instead of relying on a single solution for mobile and SMS channels, marketers should be able to seamlessly move from traditional (i.e. desktop) campaigns to mobile. Consumers should have a single, cohesive engagement experience with the brand, no matter the channel. Building this singular consumer experience helps foster brand loyalty and trust, and can also catalyze return customers, or even upsells down the road.

Here are some other things to look for when evaluating SMS marketing providers:

Seamless SMS Automation

Modern marketers should rely on SMS as another arm of their already seamless marketing strategy. Automation of critical alerts, such as shipping notifications or birthday announcements, adds another layer of personalization and value to the customer experience.

Automation solutions, while already a bastion of any successful marketing strategy, add another layer of ease to SMS and mobile strategies.

Global Deliverability

As brands grow and scale, deliverability is key to ensuring credibility and awareness. Marketers should look for SMS marketing platforms with rigorous standards and absolutely no deliverability barriers.

A Personalized Omnichannel Experience

As marketers move into specific channels, they should plan to integrate these separate campaigns into a cohesive omnichannel marketing experience.

Any mobile or SMS marketing strategy should mesh with ongoing traditional campaigns for a seamless brand experience, no matter the channel. SMS and mobile marketing solutions should be able to track these experiences and populate personalized dynamic data (product recommendations, messages, etc.) based on previous site or app visits.

Real-Time Reporting

It’s vital that campaign results from global sends are conglomerated within a single report, gathering all of the metrics associated with mobile and SMS marketing, including open rates, conversions, opt-outs, etc., all feeding into holistic consumer profiles.

These profiles can help determine content, focus, and high-level strategy across the marketing department. Understanding a consumer’s behavior and the way they utilize mobile software is critical in optimizing mobile and SMS campaigns for maximum returns.

Final Thoughts

As the world’s leading B2C marketing cloud platform, Emarsys is already developing best-in-class mobile and SMS marketing experiences for clients.

The Emarsys B2C marketing cloud gives marketers the ability to create seamless, omnichannel marketing campaigns. You can learn more about the Emarsys mobile marketing and SMS marketing solutions at Mobile World Congress, February 27 – March 2, 2017, in Barcelona, Spain.

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