Text Marketing for Small Businesses

Small business owners need marketing methods that are affordable and reliable. Get the most bang for your buck with our text marketing service.

text marketing and sms marketing for small businesses

Our small business customers love our reliable and affordable text marketing service. To name just a few, they take advantage of the following features: birthday rewards, text to win contests, social media integration, age verification, email capture, and email integration. They even use our software to text-enabled their landlines and power all of their business text messaging.

Long story short, small business owners love working with our easy to use, text marketing service. Our customer support team and educational resources empower you to succeed. Let's talk a bit more about how text marketing works.

How Text Marketing Works

The Keyword

The small business owner selects a keyword. This keyword is a word or two words that accurately represent your business. Customers then text your keyword to a short code which is a 5 or 6 digit phone number used for mass texting. This is how they join your list.

Let's say you own a local ice cream shop called Cornerstone Cones. Near the end of September, business rapidly slows. You want to transition into hot cocoa over the winter season, but need to inform current customers of this new addition. To spread the word fast, you think about giving text marketing a try, so you reserve the keyword CONE. When customers want to join your VIP text club, they text CONE to 31996.

The Auto Reply

After joining your list, customers receive an automated text back explaining the details of their subscription. This message is called an auto reply. An auto reply for Cornertone Cones might look a little bit like this.


Thanks for signing up to receive weekly deals from Cornestone Cones! Starting October 1, we'll be serving dozens of new hot cocoa flavors for the winter season. Show this text for buy one cocoa, get one free.

The Offer

During the entire month of September, you gather 497 subscribers. That's great! Now, when you're ready to transition over from cones to cocoa, you might fire out a"first cup free" offer. This will help drive new business to your cocoa stand, and reward loyal customers for stopping in. This is your offer. As your business grows, you can use your mass texting service to regularly send out weekly promotions that encourage more business.

Having a hard time grasping the whole text marketing concept? Here's a great example.

Example Scenario

Owning a local business isn't easy. Max and his sister just opened up a hardware store downtown, and so far, business hasn't been great. They usually get three new visitors a day, and out of those three, only one makes a purchase. Definitely not the way things should be starting out.

One day, Max is fed up with the lack of interest, so he decides to speak up. He heads over to his Facebook page, and posts a status that reads, "Business has been kinda slow at the new hardware store. Any ideas?" Within the first hour, ten people comment, saying something along the lines of, "We're having a hard time finding your store!"

It all starts to make sense. They are wedged between two large warehouses, and Max never mentioned this odd location in any of his marketing materials. This could definitely be the problem.

Finally, his sister Christine speaks up. "This might sound dumb, but can we text everyone the location info?" They actually have a list of numbers they collected right before their grand opening. They go online, Google "text marketing," and Slick Text is at the top of the list. Max gives us a call, and asks about using our mass texting app to engage his customers.

Because he put a compliance statement on his initial sign up sheet, he can then manually add these numbers to our platform, and fire out a location text. The next week, Max and Christine are seeing 50+ new visitors a day. They then continue to fire out text promotions every week, which grows their business.

How Will SMS Grow Your Small Business?

Let's start off with these three common truths.

  • People love shopping.
  • People want to save money.
  • Everyone reads texts.

Sending text message blasts is doing wonders for our customers. Small business owners who follow our best practices observe the following.

  • Increased foot traffic
  • Increased offer redemption
  • Heightened brand awareness
  • Strengthened customer engagement

What do these benefits have in common? Every single one increases revenue.

Why Choose SMS?

Out of all other marketing solutions, what makes texting perfect for small businesses?

  • Everyone can receive texts.
  • Over 90% of all texts are read within the first 5 minutes.
  • The average American looks at their cell phone 150+ times a day.
  • 70% of Americans want to receive mobile offers from their favorite businesses.
  • It's perfect for the business owner on a budget. At just pennies per text, it's cost effective.

These benefits just scratch the surface. Our platform also offers unparalleled customer support, innovative features, and educational tools that empower you to succeed.

How to Get Started

1. Choose Your Keyword

Your text marketing keyword must be simple, easy to remember, and totally unique to your business. For example, if you own a local record store downtown called Steve Spins Tunes, you might want to reserve the keyword STEVE or STEVESPINS. Even SST would do.

2. Write Your Auto Reply

Your auto reply is an automated text that subscribers receive immediately after opting in to your SMS marketing list. This includes a confirmation of subscription, offer redemption details, and a compliance statement. To protect you, we automatically include a compliance statement at the end of your auto reply.

3. Grow Your List

The next step? Promoting and growing your list. Settle on an irresistible opt in incentive, and then try the following list growth techniques.

  • Post a text to join graphic on Facebook.
  • Send out an email with opt in instructions.
  • Put up in store flyers.
  • Insert a sign-up widget on your website.
  • Verbally engage with customers, and ask them to sign up.

4. Send Out Irresistible Promos

If your text promotions aren't irresistible, subscribers will eventually grow disinterested. Avoid this unfortunate speed bump by making campaign development a group effort. Have a sit down with employees, and review ideas.

If your messages offer little to no value, people will opt out. That sucks for you, as it ruins the entire purpose of text marketing. The more subscribers on your list, the more impact your messages have on sales.

Sample Text Campaigns for Small Businesses

Email Capture

You always want to be building your marketing web of influence. Use our email capture and integration features to grow your email list while engaging with text marketing subscribers.

Want 20% off your next in store purchase? Reply with your email address, and we'll send you an exclusive mobile coupon available for immediate redemption.

Text to Win Contest

You can't argue with the effectiveness of a text to win sweepstakes. Make sure your grand prize is irresistible, and then use this as a tool to grow your list.

Want to win a year's supply of Limited Athletics merchandise? Reply with GEARME, and enter for your chance to win. Winner announced on 4/13.

Mobile Coupon Codes

This is one of the most obvious use cases, as the majority of text marketing customers use our service to fire out special offers.

Sally's Bakery is running a half off all homemade bread special today! Stop in and show this text to redeem your loaf, quantities limited.

Helpful Resources for Small Businesses

Want to do a bit more research? More power to you! These SMS marketing resources cater to small business owners nationwide, and help them learn the ins and outs of this mobile communication tactic.

Final Thoughts

There's no doubt that SMS marketing is a standalone technique for any business. With an open rate that soars above 90%, and an affordable, low monthly cost; this tactic will please any small business owner on a limited budget.

Don't delay your small business progress. Hop on the texting bandwagon and sign up for your free plan today.

P.S. Not ready to sign up? Give us a call at 1.800.688.6290 or shoot us an email. We'll walk you through the entire process, and give you personalized recommendations.

Get started with text for your small business today!

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