Email + SMS: Why Integrating Will Boost Reach & Conversions

Email + SMS: Why Integrating Will Boost Reach & Conversions

Posted on: May 1, 2021 | Written by: Kelly Olson, Ignite Visibility

If you want your company to stay ahead of the competition, you need to continually find new ways to effectively engage your audience.

And often, that means you need to have a blend of tactics to support your overall marketing efforts.

While email is a tried and true communication channel, adding SMS to the mix is a surefire way to optimize your reach and conversion.

In this article, Ignite Visibility’s Director of Email Marketing, Kelly Olson, will discuss the benefits of complementing your email program with SMS to create a cohesive, killer strategy.

What We’ll Cover:

Integrating Email and Text Marketing

People are on their smartphones now more than ever, with over 54% of ecommerce sales predicted to be driven by mobile devices by the end of this year. So it would be remiss to not try to reach people on the device they use all day, every day. And while it’s still relatively new to the game, SMS delivers some powerful marketing advantages. With the ubiquity of smartphones in modern culture, text marketing has become an extremely powerful platform for sending timely, concise call-to-actions to prospects and customers. On average, SMS marketing drives between 10% and 15% click-through rates, with over 50% of consumers making a direct purchase after receiving a branded SMS message. And with 90% of all text messages read within 3 seconds of delivery, this channel’s timeliness is indisputable. Currently, nearly 60% of consumers say emails affect their purchase decisions. It’s a tried-and-true platform with global accessibility that offers a direct way to connect with leads, nurture them, and turn them into loyal, lasting customers However, email marketing is just a tiny sliver of the customer engagement process. But when deployed in tandem with SMS, your outbound strategy can level-up and become a seamless, reliable, and scalable experience that drives conversions unlike anything else. After all, 43% of consumers are now accessing their emails through their mobile phones, which means there’s never been a better time to start thinking about how to integrate email and text marketing to appeal to the needs of your increasingly mobile audience. While there are plenty of reasons to justify an omnichannel approach, let’s get into the top 3 reasons why email and SMS work better together . SMS isn’t as powerful for B2B as it is for B2C brands — I’d like us to steer away from focusing on B2B in our email blogs, as we are trying to attract for B2C and specifically ecomm clients. If we can swap this with a statistic for ecomm or B2C, that would be great — otherwise, I’d like to remove.

3 Biggest Reasons to Integrate Email and SMS Marketing

Reason 1: No Cookies Necessary for Email and Text Marketing

Both email and SMS are permission-based channels, meaning that people have to provide consent on both platforms in order for a brand to communicate with them. What’s great about this is that you’re not relying on constant ad spend to get your brand and your message in front of potential customers. Once you acquire their email address and/or mobile phone number, you now have the ability to nurture and remarket at a much lower cost, resulting in a higher ROI for your business. According to TechJury, 75% of users don’t mind receiving SMS messages from brands once they’ve opted in. Even coupons sent via SMS are opened at 10 times the rate than when they’re delivered through other methods. This means there’s plenty of opportunities for email and text marketing to synchronize and help you acquire more customers. Not to mention, with increasing privacy concerns, owned channels like email and SMS are going to become even more valuable to brands as they begin to lose the ability to serve ads and remarket across paid channels in the same way as they previously did with third-party cookies.

RELATED:  A World With No Third Party Cookies: How to Transition


What Are Third-Party Cookies?

Reason 2: Complementary—Similar, But Distinctly Different

Email and SMS are great tools to use to reach your prospects and customers to engage and nurture conversion, but the two platforms are distinctly different in that there is a time and place for each. A clear understanding of the advantages of each medium will allow you to cross-promote in a way that will yield better business results. Emails are typically better for longer-tail nurturing, brand education, visual product announcements, long-form messages, press releases or publicity updates, and newsletters, as you can fit more information into an email than a single text. In general, email is the best option if you want to send out messages that are not as time-sensitive. By contrast, SMS messages must be much more succinct and can be used as a complementary communication touchpoint that helps drive the conversion quicker. Think reminders (receipts, reservations, etc.), confirmations (post-purchase, appointment scheduled), limited product offers, giveaways, urgent updates, or contests. SMS can also be strategically used to pique interest and excitement for subscribers, while email follows up with additional, more comprehensive information. For instance, imagine how you would approach a new product launch. Try sending out a succinct, enticing SMS message and then follow up with a more robust email that includes product features, pricing, and any other technical information. This winning combination will drive higher engagement and conversions than email alone. Also, think of SMS when you’re looking for quick responses. People tend to respond to text messages faster than emails. Flash sales, for example, are perfect scenarios to utilize SMS marketing for more immediate results.

Email Marketing

Reason 3: Optimize for Conversion with Cross-Channel Insights

Pro-tip for kicking off your SMS marketing journey: leverage learnings from your email program. As you test and learn things like what language or types of content drive higher engagement within your email program, you can take those insights and apply them to your SMS messages from the start. Have you found that your audience prefers one term over another within call-to-actions? Implement that within your SMS messages to come out of the gate with data-driven insights that will help increase engagement and conversions. And if you take the time to build a strategic testing plan before you officially employ both channels, you’ll be able to learn over time what platform your specific audience prefers for different types of messages, as well as what works best to optimize for conversion on SMS compared to email. Is there a difference? Test it to find out!

Wrapping Up

Combining email and SMS marketing is a strategic way to nurture prospective customers on the platform they prefer to be reached on, optimize for increased conversion rates, drive incremental revenue, and add value to your existing marketing efforts. Ready to get started with email and SMS? Ignite Visibility specializes in helping companies realize ROI from these two powerful channels by developing a holistic strategy that aims to deliver the right message, at the right time, on the right channel.   About the author: Kelly Olson is the Sr. Director of Email Marketing at Ignite Visibility. With a decade of experience in the digital marketing space developing and executing strategy to drive increased acquisition, engagement, and retention, Kelly has led enterprise to SMB level clients on a trajectory of engagement and revenue growth. She holds an MBA in Marketing and a Bachelor’s in Business Management, as well as a passion for one of the oldest, yet most effective marketing channels out there — email. Generating an impressive ROI, this powerhouse channel can drive incredible incremental revenue with a comprehensive strategy and solid execution. Outside of the office, you will find Kelly somewhere outdoors — on a hike, boating on a lake, or wine tasting in the sun.  

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