Auto Reply Optimization

The Advanced SMS Marketing Guide

To experience a solid growth rate, include something of true value in exchange for an opt in. This is an absolute must. Although it seems obvious, many marketers fall short on this key component of SMS marketing. Offer something that is solidly enticing, and enough to draw in new subscribers. This can't be a half effort. It must catch the potential subscriber's attention and push them to join.

Business owners often struggle with the thought of offering deep discounts or even giving something away for free. It's important to think into the future, and understand the real value of what you're getting in return. You may give away something away for free, but in exchange, patrons of your business are giving you explicit permission to send specials and information to their personal communication devices. So, think about how much that free item or discount costs you, and compare it to the value of a direct information pipeline to your best customers. The benefits will clearly stack in your favor.

To maximize your opt-in rates, the offer must be something that can be immediately redeemed or used after sign up. When looking to grow your list, instant rewards are key. Some business owners think that if the offer doesn't apply to the current visit, it will motivate patrons to come back soon. While that may be true, depending on how great your offer is, less people will then be willing to join your SMS marketing list on the spot.

Calls to Action

A call to action is essential to any marketing campaign, no matter the medium. Always instruct the customer on what step to take next. No offer, whether an auto reply or outbound campaign, should be sent without a call to action.

Some examples of strong calls to action for SMS marketing campaigns are:

  • "Show this text"
  • "Mention this text"
  • "Use promo code at checkout"

Laying out the next steps for your subscribers pushes them in the right direction and greases the wheels for higher offer redemption rates.

Dynamic Expiration Dates

Dynamic expiration dates are an extremely powerful tool. We all know that any good offer is time sensitive. Your auto reply offer should be no different. Because they're sent all the time, relying on one static date of expiration won't cut it. Dynamic expiration dates allow you to specify a number of days out from the date a subscriber joins, and convert that to a specific date in the future.

So for example, if a subscriber joins your SMS marketing list on May 10th, and you have a dynamic expiration date set for 4 days, it will show the expiration date of May 14th in the auto reply. This allows you to compose your auto reply once and not have to constantly update it day after day so that the expiration date is accurate. This is an incredibly powerful tool that you'll find only with the best SMS marketing companies.

Unique Promo Codes

Unique promo codes provide a simple yet powerful piece of functionality to the advanced SMS marketer. This feature allows you to send a unique code to every subscriber that opts in. With this in place, you can track coupon redemption on a subscriber by subscriber basis, and provide codes that are limited to one time use. Marketers can then use the redemption data collected by their POS systems to track the effectiveness of their SMS campaigns.

Compliance

Compliance is an extremely important component of any SMS marketing campaign. Operating outside of legal compliance opens you and your organization up to potential lawsuits and penalties. Luckily, the Slick Text system handles compliance for you by including pre-set messages that are appended to your auto replies. These messages are fairly short, and will vary based on the application of your particular keyword.

For example, if you're using a keyword for marketing, and plan to send future outbound campaigns, your auto replies will be appended with a message that would say something like:

"X Msgs/Month. Reply STOP to cancel, HELP for help. Msg&data rates may apply. Terms: http://linktoterms.com"

Where X is the number of text messages you've specified to send on a monthly basis. The Slick Text system will auto-generate a unique terms of use page for each keyword that you create as well. If you prefer to maintain your own terms of use page, you also have the opportunity to provide that link.

If you use your keyword for one time messages only, and don't plan on sending any outbound campaigns in the future, there will be no appended message. Since people who are texting in aren't subscribing to anything, there's no need to make them aware of future SMS campaigns.

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