For any business, an increase in the number of opt-in subscribers is a healthy sign that reflects a growing interest in its product or service. A clean list of opt-in subscribers is a valuable asset for a brand but requires consistent effort to grow and maintain. After all, you are not only competing with other businesses to grab the attention of your audience—while complying with legal guidelines—but also trying to convince customers to receive your text marketing messages. The trick is to incentivize your potential customers to subscribe to your text messages without appearing pushy or “spammy.”
If this sounds difficult, or you are having trouble growing your list of opt-in subscribers, here are 5 SMS opt-in best practices that you can implement today.
5 SMS Opt-In Best Practices
When you are looking for ways to increase your number of SMS opt-in subscribers, there are a few key strategies and best practices that you need to consider. Let’s dive a little deeper and show how these best practices can improve the performance of your text marketing campaigns and the size of your opt-in subscriber lists.
Incentivize Your Audience
It is estimated that around 75% of customers are comfortable receiving text messages from businesses after opting-in. Such customers redeem SMS-delivered coupons 10 times more than those received through other marketing channels. Your potential audience is more likely to subscribe to your text messages when the call-to-action is supported by a clear incentive. By offering valuable incentives such as discounts or coupons, you can be sure to increase your opt-in subscriber conversion rates.
Follow TCPA Guidelines
This is one of the most important considerations when growing your list of SMS opt-in subscribers. The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association (CTIA) guidelines make it outright illegal to purchase lists of phone numbers for text marketing campaigns. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) and the CAN-SPAM Act prohibit businesses from sending unsolicited commercial text messages without the explicit consent of the recipients.
These guidelines also ensure that a recipient can opt-out of a subscriber’s list at any point. Disregarding these regulations can lead to heavy penalties as well as a loss of trust with customers. If the nuances of these rules are not known to you, be sure to consult the linked resources to be sure you are compliant with these laws. However, partnering with the right SMS marketing platform can save you the hassle of learning all of this information and give you peace of mind that your messages are fully compliant with all laws, as we will discuss later in this article.
Use Brand-Specific SMS Keywords
As a marketer, you may want to uniquely target every segment of your audience demographics via text marketing. One of the best ways to do so, aside from keeping correspondence targeted and valuable for the recipient, is by using SMS keywords that potential subscribers can easily relate to your brand or product and that evoke something they may want.
For example, a skincare company looking for new customers might encourage the audience to subscribe to its text messages by typing SMS keywords such as “Radiant” or “Glow”. By texting these on-brand keywords to the shortcode used by the company, customers can often redeem a specific offer while consenting to receive future text marketing messages. Don’t be afraid to get creative here!
Provide Real-Time Responses
The faster you act as a business, the higher your chances are of converting potential customers into customers and opted-in subscribers. Since customers hold the power of purchase, it is important to value their time with immediate responses. With the help of an auto-responder feature, you can act quickly and efficiently so your customers feel that their time and effort is being valued and respected.
Offer Relevant Information
Opt-in subscribers are likely only going to stay if the information they receive is clear, concise, and relevant to their interests. We live in an era of spam messages, so peoples’ tolerance for irrelevant marketing material is low. Using innovative survey tools to collect information about your subscribers and segment your list is a great way to make sure they only receive the information that they want to receive and, therefore, remain subscribers for as long as possible.
These opt-in best practices can help you grow your lists, maintain the subscribers you already have, and keep your recipients happy. However, just following these best practices is not always enough. You need the right SMS marketing platform to help you easily implement them into your text marketing campaign(s).
Implementing SMS Opt-In Best Practices with an Innovative SMS Marketing Platform
SMS opt-in best practices, when implemented through the right SMS delivery platform, can help you grow and maintain your subscriber list(s). An innovative SMS marketing platform will be built with these best practices in mind, which means that properly implementing them is more about choosing the right tool and less about you having to do more work. Here are some essential features you will definitely want to look for:
- Unlimited keywords: Unlimited keywords give you the flexibility to respond to a large variety of customer requests with relevant responses, immediately. This flexibility can let automated features like auto-responders provide helpful and relevant information to any customers that use your supplied keywords.
- Auto-responders: Targeted keywords are most effective when combined with real-time responses. An auto-response feature can help you connect instantly with your subscribers, allowing you to quickly capitalize on the short attention spans of most customers.
- Increased character limit: Creating marketing messages with relevant information about your business requires optimal usage of the standard, but oftentimes limited, 160 characters. A platform offering an increased limit of up to 240 characters can help you create better and more effective marketing messages.
- Audit trail: When it comes to SMS marketing, your platform should maintain a full audit trail of messages sent and received to protect you from legal liability. There are a lot of laws around marketing, making this feature a must-have.
The right SMS delivery platform will offer all of these features and at an affordable cost. Collecting new subscribers with the help of these SMS opt-in best practices will not be a struggle when you’re supported by an intuitive and innovative SMS marketing platform with great, prompt customer service.
NorthText easy-to-use platform implements these SMS opt-in best practices, allowing you to maintain and grow your opt-in subscriber list with ease and peace of mind. To learn more about how our affordable platform can benefit your business, contact us by phone or text at (312) 869-9070 and we can get you started in minutes.CONTACT US!
Jeff Winaker is the CEO of NorthText. He’s passionate about helping clients reach their customers faster with SMS marketing. He resides in the Bay Area with his family.