Boost revenue and customer engagement with <span class="platform-hero__heading--blue">SMS marketing software</span>

Deliver value to customers and your business by using text marketing software. When SMS marketing is done right, you’ll see increased revenue and higher customer engagement. Reap the benefits of SMS marketing today by joining Textline.

Thousands of customers trust Textline’s text marketing platform

Small and large businesses rely on Textline for their SMS marketing needs. Read their reviews and success stories.

<span class="platform__quote"><q>It made our business communication way more efficient, allowing us to get more leads and business in less time. <span class="platform__quote--blue60">I was looking for a solution like Textline for years. It was a lifesaver for us.</span></q></span>

<span class="platform__quote__author">Lina L.,<span class="platform__quote__author--blue60"> Capterra</span></span>

A screenshot of a text message

What is SMS marketing software?

SMS marketing software is a platform that allows businesses to implement marketing campaigns via text message. The software enables businesses to send promotional SMS or MMS messages to customers who opt-in.

SMS marketing, a strategy for generating sales via text message, has grown in popularity over the last few years. That’s because more companies want to cut through the noise and reach customers on their mobile devices. SMS marketing is a good supplement to an email marketing campaign and can be used to build customer loyalty.

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There are many benefits to using SMS marketing software

See improved marketing campaign performance

On average, SMS marketing campaigns perform seven times better than email marketing campaigns. Plus, SMS has an average open rate of 98 percent. This is nearly four times the average open rate of an email.

Achieve better click-through rates

The average CTR for links in text messages is much higher than other channels like Google Adwords and Facebook. Text links see above a 9 percent CTR, while the others sit around 1 percent.

Immediate delivery

SMS is a reliable form of communication because of its high delivery rate and immediacy. Research suggests that 90 percent of texts are read within three minutes.

Build personal connections with customers

If customers give your business their cell phone number, it’s a big display of trust. This makes SMS marketing a great opportunity to help strengthen customer loyalty and satisfaction.

What makes a good text marketing platform?

Many organizations use text marketing platforms to send promotional offers and alerts to customers. While every SMS marketing software is different, we believe that there are a few key features to look for when choosing one for your business.

Mass texting

<div class="platform__mb40">Save time and effort with an SMS provider that allows you to send text blasts to many customers at once. Instead of typing the same message over and over, you can send one message to many simultaneously.</div>

Seamless opt-ins

<div class="platform__mb40">Pick a provider that makes it easy for customers to opt into your marketing messages. The provider should offer clear instructions about how customers can opt into your messages. They could also offer text-to-join, which typically allows people to sign up to receive SMS messages by sending a keyword like “join” to your phone number.</div>

Seamless opt-outs

<div class="platform__mb40">One key to legal text marketing is to ensure customers can easily opt out of promotional messages. The right software automatically unsubscribes contacts if they reply with words like STOP or END.</div>

Campaign Registry familiarity

<div class="platform__mb40">You want an SMS provider that is familiar with the Campaign Registry. This was created by mobile network operators to curb SPAM messages. When using a 10-digit long code number to send marketing messages, you need to register or could face penalties.</div>

Two-way messaging

<div class="platform__mb40">There’s a human behind every phone number in your contact list. As a result, you’ll want to ensure you can respond to anyone who replies to your text marketing message. Having two-way text conversations will help you build connections with customers and answer questions quickly to close more sales.</div>

MMS

<div class="platform__mb40">When it comes to marketing, often a picture is more engaging. As a result, pick an SMS software that supports multimedia messaging.</div>

Contact management

<div class="platform__mb40">You want a provider that makes it easy to import contacts with excel or CSV files and manage contact lists. Another key is finding a provider that allows contact segmentation. This will make it easier to tailor specific messages to a group of contacts.</div>

Message scheduling

<div class="platform__mb40">Ensure your business SMS platform allows you to schedule messages around the clock. That way, your marketing message will be sent to your target audience at the right time.</div>

SMS API

<div class="platform__mb40">Some businesses will want a provider that has an SMS application programming interface. This will allow for greater marketing automation. The API can make marketing workflows more productive and connect disparate software.

Auto reply texts

<div class="platform__mb40">Adding auto-reply texts to your SMS marketing means customers will get a response quickly. This could include order confirmation texts, appointment confirmation texts, or thank you messages.</div>

Message templates

<div class="platform__mb40">To save time and effort, look for a provider that allows you to create and store text templates. This will help you save several canned responses to answer common customer questions or help you craft your next marketing text faster.</div>

Solid metrics

<div class="platform__mb40">You want an SMS provider that allows you to track the performance of your text marketing campaign. Ensure you can see metrics like delivered, not delivered, replies, and more.</div>

SMS surveys

<div class="platform__mb40">SMS surveys are a great way to learn more about your customers’ needs. Use SMS surveys to understand brand awareness, collect customer data, or adjust your marketing campaign.</div>

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How businesses use text marketing software

Businesses across industries have turned to text message marketing in recent years. Here are a few examples:

Welcome offers

If a customer opts into your marketing messages, send them a welcome offer for joining.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Maria! Thanks for signing up for Road Racer’s SMS marketing messages. To wish you a warm welcome here’s a 15% off coupon: &#123&#123link&#125&#125. You’ll hear from us 3 times a month with special offers, product updates, and more.</span></span>

Promotional offers or coupons

Send a promotional offer or coupon to your customers.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hey Ash. Take 25% off your order when you dine at Cobblestone Farm Restaurant: We are open from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Offer valid through 11/11.</span></span>

Limited-time offers or flash sales

Send customers limited-time offers or send a flash sale notification.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Antonio’s Wilderness Resort: TODAY ONLY. Book your stay with us and get 25% off.</span></span>

Abandoned cart reminders

Encourage customers to finish the buying process by sending them a gentle nudge over abandoned carts.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Serene’s Fragrances: It looks like you left a few items in your shopping cart, Sarah 👀 Finish checking out now: &#123&#123link&#125&#125</span></span>

Product restock alerts

Let a customer know that a product or item they want is back in stock.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Marshall. Our heart rate monitor is back in stock! Buy it soon as it is flying off the shelves yet again: &#123&#123link&#125&#125. Text STOP at any time.</span></span>

New product or service offering

Alert customers about a new product, menu item, house listing, or more.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Payton. This is Riley from Crone’s Real Estate. We had three new houses hit the market in your desired neighborhood. Would you like to see more details or schedule a showing?</span></span>

New store opening

Let customers know about a new store location opening.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Shelby. Honeycomb Salon’s new location in Knoxville opens this week Tuesday! Schedule an appointment using this link: &#123&#123link&#125&#125.</span></span>

Price drop alerts

Urge customers to buy a product or service with a price drop text.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">THIS JUST IN. Fit Gym slashed the price of our annual membership for a limited time. Purchase before Dec. 24 to get this lifetime discount.</span></span>

Order confirmations and updates

Send customers updates about their orders, including shipping alerts and more.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Sam! We got your order. We will send another text when your items have shipped 😊</span></span>

Birthday rewards

Send customers a personalized birthday gift via SMS.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Coffee Roasters: Happy birthday, Marcos! 🥳 Stop in this week for a free birthday reward.</span></span>

Appointment reminders

Make sure customers come to their appointments by sending appointment reminders.

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Fern. Your furniture consultation with Morty is tomorrow at 12:30 p.m. See you there! For directions to our storefront, click here: &#123&#123link&#125&#125.</span></span>

Drip campaigns

Use a drip campaign to schedule a series of marketing texts to send to customers at the right cadence.

Day 1:

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Lucas. Thanks for signing up for Coffee Roaster’s loyalty program.</span></span>

Day 3:

<span class="chat-bubble"><span class="chat-bubble__text">Hi Lucas. Present this coupon code for 15% off your order: SWEET15</span></span>

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SMS marketing frequently asked questions

Is SMS marketing legal?

Yes. SMS marketing is legal. But, there are several rules businesses must follow to comply with the laws that regulate texting. This includes the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991 and The Campaign Registry. To comply with the TCPA, you must have the consent of the person you’re texting. Opt-ins can be obtained by sending a text to join or having customers fill out a consent form. Read more about how to grow your subscribed contact list here.

One best practice is to obtain a double opt-in. This means confirming a customer’s opt-in choice in the first text message you sent to them. To explain further, a single opt-in is asking customers for their phone number or having them fill out a contact form. A double opt-in is confirming the choice in a text.

In addition to obtaining an opt-in, you must also ensure your contacts can opt out at any time. This means ensuring customers can reply to the message with words such as STOP or END.

Additionally, companies using 10-digit long code numbers to text customers must register for the Campaign Registry. The registry was created by mobile network operators like Verizon and T-Mobile to cut down on SPAM messages. Not signing up is risky as you can get blocked, face message deliverability issues, or get fined.

There are other rules to keep in mind as well. Read our blog on how to ensure you are legally texting your customers to learn more.

How do I send an SMS marketing blast on Textline?

Sending a mass text campaign on Textline is easy with our Announcements feature.

Here are the steps to create a marketing Announcement on Textline.

  1. Head to the Textline dashboard and create a new Announcement
  2. Compose your message
  3. Add recipients
  4. Select how to manage replies to your mass message
  5. Schedule your message or send now with one click

To see a more in-depth guide with photos, view this help center page.

Is SMS marketing effective?

SMS marketing has proven to be an effective way to engage customers and increase revenue. Here are a few stats that showcase its effectiveness:

  • 96 percent of marketers using SMS said the channel helped them drive more revenue.
  • Consumers redeem coupons delivered via SMS 10 times more than other coupon types
  • 64 percent of consumers want businesses to use SMS more frequently to connect with them.
  • The average click-through rate for offer marketing messages sent via SMS is 9.18 percent.
  • Texting has a high open rate of 98 percent, which ensures customers see your message
  • The average text message is read within three minutes, so brands can share important updates quickly
  • Texting has a 45 percent response rate

When is the best time to send SMS marketing message?

The best time to send a marketing SMS will depend on your industry and customer base. For example, an ecommerce store may have better luck reaching customers on weekends, while a B2B marketing team should aim to reach their customers during the business hours during a typical work week. One good way to find the best time to send marketing messages for your company is to test different send times.

However, be sure you don’t send marketing messages before 8 a.m. or after 9 p.m. in your customer’s time zone. If you send it outside of these hours, you could be illegally texting your customers, according to the TCPA.

How often should you send SMS marketing messages?

There’s not a one-size-fits all frequency for businesses. It will depend on your industry, SMS subscribers, time of year, and more. However, one thing is clear: Do not send too many marketing texts, or you will increase your opt-out rate.

We at Textline recommend a monthly range of two to four texts to each contact.

How do I grow my SMS subscriber list?

There are many ways you can grow your SMS list. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Let customers know they can text you to opt-in
  • Add an opt-in form to your website
  • Convert your existing email or newsletter subscribers
  • Work opt-ins into existing signup flow or at online checkout
  • Incentivize opt-ins with rewards
  • Build a referral program

For more SMS list growth tools, read our blog.

Can people respond to my marketing texts?

Yes! When you’re using Textline to send marketing messages, all customers can reply to your message. You can manage replies in one unified inbox.

How much does it cost to send marketing SMS?

Pricing will depend on your SMS service provider and the number of marketing messages you send. Textline offers three different pricing options. Each option starts with a 14-day free trial and unlimited two-way texting. If you have unique business needs, you can fill out our enterprise form and a team member will work with you to determine a custom pricing plan.

Can I send marketing messages from my personal phone?

Using the Textline application, you can send marketing messages from your mobile device.

However, do not send marketing messages from your native texting app on your personal mobile device. Customers can’t easily opt out of messages from a native texting application. Plus, you can’t send out bulk text messages using a native texting app because it would start a group message versus mass message.

What are some best practices for SMS marketing?

There are many best practices for SMS marketing. Below we break down a few:

  • Always get consent to text
  • When in doubt, get a double opt-in to ensure compliance
  • Ensure customers can opt out at any time
  • Send exclusive SMS offers
  • Send personalized messages
  • Keep your messages short and on point
  • Don’t send too many messages
  • Test different send times to figure out when your customers engage the most
  • Pay attention to customer time zones
  • Avoid sending irrelevant messages or those that sound like SPAM
  • Engage in two-way conversations when possible

To learn more about best practices, read our blog here.

What types of phone numbers can I use to send SMS texts?

There are three types of mobile phone numbers you can use for marketing SMS messages. These are 10-digit long codes, dedicated short codes, or toll-free numbers. 10DLC are local long-code numbers that are approved for two-way SMS messaging. Dedicated short codes are five or six-digit codes for texting campaigns and are often used for one-way text blasts. Toll-free numbers allow businesses to text from an 800 number.

Each type of phone number has pros and cons. Textline recommends using a 10DLC number. 10DLC is the standard long code for application-to-person texting in North America. These numbers are more recognizable, support two-way texting, and are cheaper than short codes. Short codes often cost upwards of $1,000 per month.

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