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Learn / Blog

Unlocking Business Growth: Harnessing the Power of Bulk Texting

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|  7 min
Bulk Texting SMS
In this article

In the digital economy, consumers demand quick and easy access to information, and expect the brands they interact with to be aware of their needs, highly responsive, and able to provide the resources they require to meet their aspirations and the challenges they face. When dealing with a large customer base with a potentially global spread, businesses therefore require a communications medium that enables them to meet all of these expectations.

Short message service or SMS text provides a cost-effective and far-reaching medium that can enable business organizations to address the challenges of dealing with a large and widely dispersed consumer population. SMS text capability has been available to phone and mobile device users since the early 1990s and can be initiated from smart and conventionally featured devices alike – with no need for an internet connection.

SMS texting also stacks up extremely well when compared to other communications media. Open rates for SMS text messages are of the order of 98%, with around 90% of texts being read within three minutes of delivery. This is almost four times the opening rate of email. In addition, SMS response rates are some six to seven times higher than for direct mail.

Using SMS text therefore empowers businesses to reach large numbers of consumers directly on their mobile devices, and to provide information, offers, and support via a medium that they trust and quickly read or respond to. This is especially true of bulk SMS communications.

What Is Bulk Texting?

Bulk texting or bulk SMS is a marketing strategy which involves sending promotional messages, information, or alerts via short message service (SMS) to a large and targeted list of subscribers. Bulk texting enables businesses to send SMS messages to mobile phones and personal devices practically anywhere on the planet and can encompass both one-way and two-way conversations.

Organizations may initiate Bulk SMS marketing campaigns from a dedicated piece of SMS software or use an SMS API (application programming interface) to enable SMS integration with their existing business systems and software.

The procedure for bulk texting is typically a straightforward workflow: The business uploads a list of contact names and contact information to the bulk SMS platform, composes a message to be sent out to the list, schedules a time and date for its transmission, then sends the message.

Use cases for bulk SMS are numerous and wide-ranging. They include promotional advertising, the transmission of company news and product or service information, issuing alerts or notifications, sending out reminders, staging competitions and polls, and conducting information exchanges with consumers for purposes such as account/identity verification or the completion of transactions.

For this reason, organizations in numerous sectors can use bulk texting. Bulk SMS is routinely employed by enterprises, consumer brands, financial institutions, travel and hospitality agencies, media outlets, healthcare providers, non-profits, educational establishments, and many others.

How Bulk SMS Contributes to Business Growth

As we have seen, bulk SMS can serve any organization with a large base of users or clients that they need to reach out to at once, with certain information. However, smaller scale enterprises can also benefit from bulk texting, using it as a channel to deliver an additional business offer that can increase sales and revenue by reaching customers when it’s most suitable for them, with the most critical information or services they need.

More generally, bulk SMS can stimulate business growth by providing benefits and opportunities in the following ways.

Improving Customer Relationships

Bulk SMS subscriber lists will typically consist of a targeted set of consumers who fit a certain profile, in terms of what they need and want from a particular product or service. Organizations can therefore customize and tailor their messaging to deliver timely and personalized information and offers that meet customers wherever they are along the “buyer’s journey.”

This immediate relevance (coupled with the fact that bulk SMS subscribers have given their active consent and approval to receiving communications from the brand) helps marketers build and nurture better relationships with their consumers.

Increasing Customer Engagement and Brand Loyalty

The ability to send targeted and personalized messages to consumers enables businesses to create a sense of intimacy with the brand, and loyalty among their customers. This translates into greater customer retention, and a greater tendency for existing customers to act as brand advocates, who can spread the word to potential new customers, about how good the organization’s products or services are. This helps in generating new prospects, who can contribute to expanding the brand’s customer base, and increasing its revenue.

Increasing Sales and Conversions

Using bulk SMS to provide timely and relevant information and resources to prospective buyers helps to nudge them over the line, to become paying customers. By bulk texting with targeted and relevant messages, businesses can increase customer engagement, drive repeat purchases, and generate more revenue.

Facilitating Transactions

Bulk SMS communications can help customers in the loop regarding the status of their purchases and deliveries, with real-time status reports for shipments, reminders of delivery dates, and notifications when a consignment arrives. This kind of bulk texting helps businesses scale and cope with the critical challenge of fulfillment.

Application-to-person messaging or A2P SMS is typically a one-way communication between an enterprise software system or business platform and the consumer. Also known as enterprise SMS or business SMS, A2P SMS assists in real or near real-time information exchanges that can facilitate transactions. This includes the transmission of security codes for identity verification, or the sending of one-time passwords (OTPs) for two-factor authentication (2FA) and multi-factor authentication (MFA).

Greater Return on Investment (ROI)

In comparison to marketing channels such as TV, radio, or print ads, bulk SMS marketing is a cost-effective option that organizations can monitor by studying open rates, delivery reports, response rates to calls to action (CTAs), and other performance indicators.

Bulk SMS Integration with Other Marketing Channels

By integrating bulk SMS with other marketing channels, organizations can amplify the effect of their promotional efforts and drive further growth. For example, by promoting SMS campaigns on social media, businesses can encourage customers to opt-in and receive bulk SMS messages. At the same time, using SMS messages to drive traffic to social media profiles can increase customer engagement and build the brand’s online presence.

Elsewhere, organizations can include bulk SMS opt-in options in their email marketing campaigns. This can help grow SMS subscriber lists, and reach consumers who may not be as active on email. Using business SMS messages as a follow-up to email campaigns can help increase the likelihood of a response to this slower medium.

Businesses can also use bulk texting to enhance their offline marketing efforts. For example, an organization could send SMS coupons or special offers to customers who visit their physical stores or attend their events. Bulk SMS messaging can also be used to provide information about in-store or offline events and increase attendance.

Best Practices for Growth-Oriented Business Bulk Texting

Here are some recommendations and best practices to follow, to ensure that your bulk texting efforts contribute to business growth.

Build a Targeted and Permission-Based Subscriber List

Segment your list of subscribers according to key criteria (income bracket, age, gender, purchase history, etc.). This will assist your marketing team in creating targeted and more personalized messaging.

Include a clear invitation to opt in. This will help keep you in line with legal and regulatory compliance demands and help to ensure that your subscribers are willing participants in your bulk SMS campaigns.

Provide An Option to Leave

Compliance frameworks such as Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) make it a legal requirement that you should provide clear instructions and simple mechanisms for opting out of bulk SMS subscriber lists. Providing for opt-out offers you legal protection. It also helps to ensure that your bulk texting lists are confined to consumers who actually wish to hear from you.

Use Short and Simple Messages

Short and simple messages are easier for customers to understand and react to. They can also save you money and text credits, with your bulk SMS service plan. Preferably in less than six sentences and fewer than 160 characters, you should identify your brand, greet the customer by name, spell out a concise message, and include a clear call to action (CTA).

Use Strategic Timing and Message Frequency

Study your target audience and identify the time of day and days of the week when they’re most receptive to bulk SMS communication. As a general rule, you should not send more than one promotional SMS to the same recipient in a day. Waiting two or three days before sending a follow-up text is more appropriate.

Test and Optimize Your Messaging

Perform A/B testing on your bulk SMS messaging to determine the effectiveness of alternative wording, images (for Multimedia Message Service or MMS communication), and calls to action. You can send sample texts to internal members of your team, or a select group of target customers.

Choose the Right Bulk SMS Service Provider

The bulk SMS service provider you choose should be able to deliver a comprehensive set of texting tools and SMS integration features, from a secure and compliant platform that offers high uptime and message delivery rates, together with responsive and helpful customer support. The provider should also be able to scale with your business as it grows.

The IDT Express SMS API helps organizations capture global interest using impactful bulk SMS messages powered by a carrier-grade platform and an extensive network of 550+ direct carrier connections. You can swiftly integrate IDT’s Platform into your current systems or applications through a user-friendly wizard-driven code generation process that is fast and effortless to utilize. Comprehensive documentation is available to facilitate quick deployment, along with 24/7 support for you and your team.

To find out more about how the IDT Express SMS API can help your business grow with bulk SMS, book a demo.

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