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Why your business should not opt-out of SMS marketing

By Brittany Bentz

The rules and regulations for a text message marketing campaign are confusing. Trust me, I know. There are a lot of guidelines to follow and they are constantly evolving.

For example, how are you supposed to know when to include the phrase “txt STOP 2 stop” or that you no longer need to say “msg & data rates may apply”? This is why many companies are turning to application push messages to interact with their clients instead of text messaging.

But before we discuss app push messages, let us consider the process of app consumption.

First, the consumer must know the app exists; then, learn about it; search it; download it; accept lengthy agreements about who even knows what; approve notifications; approve location; create login information; and finally, get started with the new app.

Now this is the moment of truth. It is this moment that the consumer decides the fate of your app. According to Localytics, 20 percent of apps are used only once, therefore threatening the lifespan of your app on the consumer’s smartphone.

If your app does make the first round of cuts, it is important to note the steady competition with other more important items in the mobile world.

For starters, the average consumer has more than 25 apps sitting on the smartphone homescreen (Nielsen).

Additionally, in a battery bind, consumers are less likely to use apps to leave the remaining battery life for receiving text messages or making phone calls. If storage space is low, what is going to be deleted? That picture of the family from last year’s Christmas or that app that is just sitting on one of the back pages on your smartphone? You got that right – that app is a goner.

There is one app that is almost guaranteed to always make the mobile team: text messaging.

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Text messaging is the one common denominator across all mobile platforms. It is the way all mobile devices communicate. It is personal, it is high priority and it’s effective.

According to Forbes’ 50 Essential Mobile Marketing Facts, 90 percent of all text messages – even promotional ones – are read within three minutes of delivery.

But how many people are reading your app push messages? Data from Localytics shows that only 3 percent of your app push messages are actually being opened and read. If you can customize the push message based on consumer preferences or behavior, that number climbs to a mere 7 percent.

I know what you are thinking. Smartphones have cool features such as geo-locators, Siri and Apple Pay. Therefore, text messaging is so yesterday. Not so fast. SMS continues to offer one of the most reliable and ever-present communication mediums.

Text message marketing can do more than just deliver a message.

Text messaging can spur engagement. It can include a link to your mobile Web site, a ticket, a sales promotion, a reminder and an invitation.

BOTTOM LINE, it all comes down to engagement.

The app is a necessary element of an effective marketing program, but it is not sufficient in itself.

All mature mobile marketing programs must also include a text message feature to engage your audience through a wide variety of content on a personal level.

So take the time to learn the text message marketing rules. They are not so confusing that you should stop using the most ubiquitous medium out there.

The statistics speak for themselves: app push messages are an enhancement to your marketing strategy, not a replacement.

Brittany Bentz is marketing coordinator at, a King of Prussia, PA-based mobile marketing agency.