If there’s one thing that drives me crazy, it’s leaving a text message unread. The little red notification hovering over a messaging app can really drive me nuts. And THAT is what makes an SMS campaign so powerful.
Most of us don’t get push alerts for email. But we do for text messages. Texting is how we stay in touch with family and friends. And when we opt in, it’s how we get communications from our favorite brands and the services we need.
Despite the obvious rewards, many marketers still aren’t taking advantage of this essential channel that connects them directly to potential customers in the moment. Why is that?
We get it. At first glance, it seems like it might be complicated, and getting it right is important to both your brand and your audience. But fear not: there are some simple ways to get started.
Keep your SMS campaigns trustworthy and click-worthy
In this post, I’ll share some of my favorite lessons and a few stories of brands who have made link management a staple of their programs.
If you’re ready to get after your first SMS campaign – or simply looking to improve your current program – there’s an important consideration:
How will you manage and scale the links used in those campaigns?
Managing links in SMS campaigns can be a bit tricky. You only have a limited character count to work with, and you need to comply with various regulations while also tracking link performance. It’s a lot to juggle, but don’t worry, we’ve got your back.
Five Steps to a Great SMS Campaign:
1. Think in terms of scale
Your SMS campaign involves sending a large number of links that need to be tracked individually for accurate attribution. This can be done with standard short links, but did you know that branded links generate a 39% higher click-through rate?
A branded link management system (like Rebrandly) gives you the power to generate a high volume of branded links and the analytics to track their efficacy, both granularly and at scale. You can also monitor, manage, and fix broken links, even after they’ve been sent, and comply with regulations like TCPA and CAN-SPAM by including necessary information like opt-out instructions.
3 Mobile is one of Ireland’s leading telecoms providers with over 2.5 million customers. They’ve adapted their SMS campaigns to include the branded short domain 3.ie, using Rebrandly to transform their customer outreach messages and increase click-through rates. Branded links provide the capability to send links in bulk through transactional SMS, both tailored to individuals and to their entire customer network.
2. Automate UTM Codes in SMS Campaigns
UTM codes are a powerful tool for tracking link performance. By adding UTM parameters to your links, you can track clicks, views, and other metrics across different channels, including SMS campaigns. UTM parameters can be automated through a Branded Link Management Platform, so the tracking doesn’t interfere with branding, or add unnecessary character count to your texts.
Samsonite, a multinational luggage brand, uses custom short URLs to track the performance of their promotions across a variety of retail products. They embed UTM parameters into their links to derive valuable click insights while maintaining clean, organized links for customer communications.
3. Set up Link Redirects for Multiple SMS Campaigns
Link redirects can be a lifesaver if you need to change a link after it’s been sent out. By setting up a redirect, you can automatically forward visitors to a new URL without having to manually update each link. For SMS campaigns, this can be a life saver when you’re promoting a time-bound offer. That link doesn’t disappear from a customer’s phone. The last thing you want is for them to get a 404 error for a broken link.
Panda Express is a popular fast food chain in the US that uses Rebrandly to share links to promotions and other relevant campaigns. When promotions end, they update their links to redirect to current deals and relevant content.
4. Monitor Link Performance Holistically
Tracking link performance is crucial for measuring the success of your SMS campaigns. By monitoring clicks, views, and other metrics, you can make informed decisions about which links to keep and which to retire.
5. Use Dynamic Links
Dynamic links can help you personalize your SMS messages and provide a better user experience. With dynamic links, you can create links that automatically adapt to different devices and platforms, ensuring that your customers can access your content regardless of their device.
Your Brand. Your links. Your campaign.
SMS campaigns can be a powerful tool for any marketer. It’s important to remember that not all texts – or the links within them – are created equal. Do you know if your campaigns are building trust and driving conversions?