Unlimited Text Marketing Plans Vs. Tiered Pricing Plans: Which One to Choose?
Remember when you used to have to pay for every text message you received on your cell phone? Luckily, most of us have unlimited texting plans now, so we never have to think about the cost of the SMS messages we send and receive on a daily basis. However, text marketing plans work a little differently.
That’s because, unlike a private user, your text marketing messages are typically sent to many subscribers at the same time. So, while you may only send 10 personal messages per week to each of your five closest friends, your business could be sending 10 SMS messages per week to thousands of subscribers simultaneously.
This is why text marketing plans are so different from regular text messaging plans. Many SMS marketing platforms don’t even offer unlimited text marketing plans at all – they only provide tiered pricing plans for a set number of messages per month.
Let’s take a look at the differences between unlimited text marketing plans and tiered plans and discuss the pros and cons of each, so you can determine which pricing model works best for your business.
Unlimited Text Marketing Plans vs. Tiered Pricing Plans
On a personal cell phone, an unlimited texting plan means you can send and receive as many messages as you want with no (or very few) limitations. An unlimited text marketing plan is usually structured differently. While you’re generally allowed to send as many messages as you want, you’ll likely be limited in how many subscribers you can send those messages to. Even if you only send one mass text in a month, if you have 10,000 subscribers, you’re really sending 10,000 messages, so it makes sense that text marketing providers would cap your contact list.
In a tiered text marketing plan, you’ll have a limit to how many messages you can send per month, but generally, you can have as many subscribers as you wish. You just need to make sure that your subscriber count doesn’t exceed your message cap. For example, if you purchase a tiered plan that gives you 1,000 messages per month but you have 3,000 subscribers, then you can’t even send one text per month without incurring 2,000 overage fees.
Which One Should You Choose?
There isn’t any one-size-fits-all answer to which text marketing pricing model works best for every business. There are benefits and drawbacks to both pricing plans, so you’ll need to compare your options and determine which features are of a higher priority for your company.
Unlimited Text Marketing Plans: Pros and Cons
As mentioned above, most unlimited text marketing plans aren’t truly unlimited, but they do still have some benefits. If your company is still growing or you haven’t fully developed your marketing strategy yet, having a fixed-price text marketing plan can help you keep your costs low while you’re figuring out your branding and messaging.
Knowing that your text marketing bill is going to be the same every month makes it much easier to manage your budget, and if you don’t have a large subscriber base yet then you don’t need to worry about hitting your limit.
On the other hand, as a growing business, you should hope that your subscriber base will also grow. Unlimited text marketing plans don’t scale well because of their subscriber caps, and because you don’t get any discounts as your volume grows. And if you do find a truly unlimited plan, it’s likely to be a bare-bones SMS delivery service that doesn’t offer any of the advanced tools and features you need to create effective text marketing campaigns.
For this reason, many companies start with an unlimited text marketing plan but then transition to a tiered plan as their campaigns gain traction and their subscriber base expands.
Tiered Text Marketing Plans: Pros and Cons
Tiered text marketing plans are much more common than unlimited plans. You’ll receive a set amount of SMS credits that can be used to send messages to as many subscribers as you wish, and if you go over your monthly allotment, you’ll be charged a small overage fee per extra message.
A tiered pricing model easily scales up with your business as you grow, since you can usually transition to larger plans without breaking your contract. Also, most providers charge less per message as your volume grows. For example, you may pay $0.03 per message in a 1,000 SMS credit plan but only $0.02 per message in a 10,000 SMS credit plan.
One drawback to a tiered plan is that you may incur overages if you send too many messages per month. Overage fees are usually minimal, but if you don’t pay attention to your usage you could end up with a surprisingly large bill at the end of the month. Also, if you only have a few subscribers and you don’t send many text marketing messages, you could end up overpaying for a large plan you don’t need.
Again, many companies solve this problem by starting with an unlimited plan and then upgrading to tiered plans as their text marketing campaigns become more successful.
Whichever pricing model you choose, it’s also important to find a platform that provides all the text marketing features you need to launch a creative and engaging SMS campaign. Some of the most important features to look for include:
- Unlimited subscriber groups for audience segmentation allowing you to better target your text message campaigns.
- Text-2-Pay and Text-2-Donate so your audience can send secure payments right from their native text messaging app.
- Multimedia (MMS) text messages so you can add images and video to your text marketing campaigns.
- API support so you can integrate your text marketing platform with your customer management, accounting, and communications software.
Here at NorthText, we include all of these features and more in both our unlimited and tiered text marketing pricing plans. Our transparent pricing makes it easy to manage your monthly marketing budget, and our custom volume pricing solutions empower you to grow your campaigns and your business with no hassles or limitations.
NorthText isn’t just an SMS platform, we’re also your text marketing partners, and our live, U.S.-based team of experts is here to help you take your text marketing strategy to the next level.