SMS stands for Short Message Service. This service has been around for many years, however it is only in the last few years that businesses have began using SMS to communicate with customers. SMS messages were originally designed to be of 1120 bits is size. This size can accommodate 140 characters of the English language. To understand why SMS Marketing open rates are high, one needs to understand why SMS open rates are high in the first place, from three perspectives – the sender, the carrier or the mobile company and the receiver.
From the sender’s perspective sending an SMS is attractive for a number of reasons. That includes all of the following:
Asynchronous – the sender can send a message even when the recipient is not available to react to that message at that exact time. There is less chance of irritating a recipient by sending a message that they can see at their convenience than by making a phone call, which demands their immediate attention.
A voice call either connects or it does not. If it does not connect because of any reason like the recipient is busy on another call or the carriers network is overloaded at that time, the caller would be inconvenienced and hence irritated. However, with its asynchronous mode of operation, the SMS does not have this problem. From the recipients perspective an SMS is attractive because it is – (a) Asynchronous – so it does not disturb the recipient. (b) Consumes less attention – since the message is on the screen of the device, it is easy to understand most of the message at one glance. (c) Cheaper – In many countries SMS is free to receive, so recipients prefer SMS over an incoming call.
Mass – the sender can create and send hundreds or even thousands of messages programmatically and send them in a matter of seconds. Messages can be personalized to reach just one person or the thousands and do it fast and easy, and without any hassle.
Personalizable – since the sender can programmatically generate the sms, they can personalize it too in various ways easily. From the carrier’s perspective an SMS is attractive because it is can add Value added revenue which means that Carriers can charge a small amount for each SMS sent, this increases the average revenue they earn per user. It also has a Low cost or unused capacity – SMS uses a different channel as against the channel used by voice call. If SMS was not used, this channel would just lie around unutilized; that is it would simply be a wasted resource.
Marketers realize the above perspectives and so they have leveraged SMS for sending marketing messages. For many users their normal behavior towards SMS is why they open it; for others keeping their inbox clean and having space to receive more messages is important, and so they too open it. Hence overall the open rate on SMS Marketing messages is very high. Yet when you look at the situation from another person’s perspective you can easily see that the Marketing is very beneficial to the company as well as to those who utilize the service.