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Written by
Katy Ratican
11 May 2021
5 minutes

How to write an effective broadcast SMS/mass text message

Follow these top tips and you'll grow into a savvy SMS marketer in no time
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Times were simpler before the digital revolution. For one thing, mobile devices weren’t the norm. And phones didn’t follow you everywhere you went. If somebody needed to get a hold of you, it was either at home or at the office.

Here’s the thing: there’s no turning back.

It might be a bit scary for those of you who are tech-phobic, but your role in this new era has yet to be defined. It’s time to embrace the digital revolution, and one of its main components: mobile phones. More specifically, it’s time to dive headfirst into text messaging.

In this new era, contacting people on their phones isn't as invasive or inconvenient as cold calls. Through texting or SMS, you aren’t going to disrupt someone’s dinner or favourite television show.

That’s why 64 per cent of consumers think that businesses don’t text them enough. By neglecting to take the plunge, you’re missing out on opportunities to interact with eager consumers who want to hear from you.

With that said, brand messaging through a mobile device is much different from traditional approaches — even email.

Don't worry, though. All it takes is a little bit of trial, error, and following the five tips below, and voila! You’ll be writing effective broadcast SMS that drive revenue and encourage brand loyalty in no time.

1. Remember, you're a person — just like your recipients

People are more open than ever to hearing from their preferred brands on their mobile device.

Emphasis on the term “preferred.”

Staying on your recipients' good side hinges on offering value through your mass text messages. You can't do that with written copy that reads as spam.

Remember, contacting someone through their smartphone via SMS is incredibly personal. It’s much more intimate than email, for instance. Identifying who you are and giving a clear call-to-action are both integral to your success.

Something else to consider is that people don't tend to save brands' numbers in their phone. Without clearly stating who you are, you’ll confuse your recipient, who’ll likely block the number.

Here’s an example:

“Hi! It’s Porter’s Steakhouse. We’d love to hear about how you felt about your latest dining experience at our restaurant. Please click this link to leave a review! 😊”

2. Keep a watchful eye on the clock

The clock is ticking on you getting the best results from your broadcast SMS.

Typically, people prefer it if you contact them during regular business hours. If you want people to open your message quickly, then the best time to send is between 9-5pm. This may come as a surprise given that those are working hours. Perhaps people are looking for a distraction — who knows! All we know is that this is generally the most effective sending time.

However, the world doesn't deal in absolutes. As such, the business hours rule isn’t hard and fast.

When an offer jumps into your head, and you're compelled to immediately inform the masses, give it a shot. As long as you follow the first section's tips, it's worth the attempt.

But whatever you do, avoid sending text messages after bedtime. Waking someone up from pleasant dreams is one way to quickly end up on their ‘blocked’ list.

3. Avoid text speak

Even the least savvy of us has adopted ‘txt’ speak, in all its grammatical destruction.

But just remember, you are not talking to your friends here. You're a business owner communicating to your client-base. You need to look professional.

Use full-form words, and don’t go over the top on emojis. Just one at the end should do the trick nicely.

On top of that, get another person to proofread your messages. There’s nothing worse than noticing an embarrassing typo after pressing send. To keep your messages impactful and professional, it’s always best to seek a second opinion.

4. Be conscious of the texting word economy

Finding success with a given text campaign will come down to how much you can maximise your 160 characters. Each word must be carefully chosen, and your message must be to the point. Don’t be frivolous with a single letter or piece of punctuation.

Keep your recipients’ experience in mind. Some can’t directly access domains through their mobile device. If you’re attaching a link, make it easy for them to type it into their computer in case they don’t have a smartphone.

You might find it necessary to have a separate domain for text campaigns, which will pay dividends in the long run.

5. The numbers tell the story

There are plenty of reasons why your business should use SMS text blasts. Top-most being that for relatively minimal overhead costs, you can receive a handsome return. Whether you use SMS messages to prompt reviews, remind of appointments, or send important updates, texting can prove to be a transformative tool.

But that potential return will depend heavily on your ability to write engaging texts. This often necessitates trial, error, and analytics. When choosing the best mass texting service for your business, look for one that provides you with the numbers that tell you how you’re performing.

Those numbers will dictate how you should write your texts and the best times to send them.

In short

Writing a compelling broadcast SMS isn't necessarily simple, but it's not rocket science either. Follow these tips and you'll grow into a savvy SMS marketer in no time.

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