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Using Mobile Keywords to Brand Your Business

Branding With Mobile Keywords

Are you familiar with mobile keywords? It’s a term that may not be familiar, but mobile keywords are extremely important for the success of your text-to-win campaign. Here’s a breakdown of how you can use them to brand your business when texting.

First, What Are Mobile or SMS Keywords?

A mobile keyword, also called an SMS keyword, is a short word with letters and/or numbers that is sent in a text message to a short code (a 5-digit phone number). It not only brands and identifies your business, it also triggers a response from the mobile texting platform.

For example, let’s say the keyword for your business is TYKETOYS. To signup, a subscriber would text your keyword (TYKETOYS) to our short code, which is 65047. They would then get an automatic return text confirming their subscription.

This keyword also brands and identifies your business when you send out text messages, since each message is prefaced with your keyword.

Here’s an example of a message: “TYKETOYS: Make the most of spring with our outdoor toys! Get 15% off with coupon code SPRING15.”

Keywords serve a dual purpose: to allow someone to subscribe or opt-in automatically and to identify your business.

Choosing Mobile Keywords

You won’t be able to change your keyword easily, so it’s best to choose one carefully. Any changes to the keyword could cause confusion and derail your campaign.

Keep these tips in mind when you select mobile keywords for your text-to-win:

  1. Make the keyword easy to remember by relating it to your business name or product.
  2. Make sure the keyword is as short as possible and one word only (no spaces).
  3. Use proper spelling and don’t try to invent new words.
  4. Avoid special characters, including symbols.

Promote Your Branded Keyword

Once you’ve chosen the right keyword, why not use it to promote your brand and your sweepstakes? Here are a few ways to promote your campaign and your business with your mobile keyword:

  • Print it on promotional items and apparel. For a creative push and fashionable branding, feature your mobile keyword on t-shirts, baseball caps, apparel and promotional. Think of them as conversation starters that can attract new customers to your text-to-win.
  • Do you have company vehicles? Brand them with not only your logo and information, but with your keyword as well. Used this way, your keyword will be truly mobile and can be another avenue to increase subscribers.
  • Online promotion via social media and video. Promote your mobile keywords online via multiple channels, such as social media and digital video advertising. The best way to boost participation is to make sure your message is seen by as many people as possible.

Using mobile keywords to brand your business is a simple way to increase the effectiveness of a text-to-win campaign. Getting new subscribers and potential customers into your pipeline is the ultimate reward for using mobile keywords!

Reserve your mobile keyword today to get started with a text-to-win campaign. Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help.

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Why Text Message Marketing Must Always Be Opt-In

Opt-in is required for text messaging

Are you afraid of giving your mobile number to businesses? When it comes to text message marketing, many still believe if they give their mobile number, it’ll be sold and they’ll get unsolicited texts.

But this should never happen. Companies are legally required to get consent (or opt in) or they’ll face consequences.

Breaking the Rules = Heavy Fines from the FCC

Texting users without permission can bring down heavy fines and significant penalties from the FCC. Those fines can reach up to $1,500 per text, per person. This is covered under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) of 1991, which was amended to cover SMS in 2012 by the FCC. The TCPA makes it mandatory for businesses to receive “prior express written consent” before texting consumers.

Know the Legal Requirements of Text Marketing

Momares’ text and text-to-win programs are designed to only text to those who opt-in. This ensures clients don’t inadvertently run afoul of the legal requirements. Our recent blog post on the legal rules of text messaging covers everything that you need to know before you start your campaign.

Is Your Program in Compliance? Ask Yourself These Questions

Before you launch your campaign, be sure you can answer YES to all of the following questions. This ensure you are indeed establishing a respectful and lawful relationship with your subscribers:

  1. Are you sending text messages only to users who have provided express consent per MMA regulations?
  2. As part of that consent, are all programs and instructions, including message and data rates, program terms and privacy policies clearly displayed with all opt-in promotions?
  3. Have you taken steps to ensure the user’s consent applies only to the specific program for which the user opted-in and the consent has not been treated as approval for other programs?
  4. Are you using double opt-in for subscribers who join the program via a Web form or other method? (In many cases, texting from a mobile phone is the one time that a single opt-in should be permitted.)
  5. Have you communicated that opt-out (STOP) and assistance (HELP) mechanisms are available at the time of opt-in?
  6. Are all opt-out requests honored within 72 hours of receipt?
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Why SMS Marketing Is the Key to Reaching Millennials

77M Millennials in the US today and half of them use their mobile phone to research products and services. If you want to reach them, it’s going to be on their mobile.
There are 77 million Millennials in the US today and half of them use their mobile phone to research products and services. If you want to reach them, your best bet is mobile.

Millennials make up one of the largest segments of the population in the U.S. at 77 million. And roughly 85% of them own smartphones, according to Nielsen. So how do you reach them? Text and SMS marketing.

Here are some reasons why text message marketing is the key to reaching Millennials (ages 18-34).

Millennials Prefer Texting

If you want to reach Millennials via smartphone, using text message marketing is the best way to do so. Text messaging is the most dominant form of smartphone communication for Millennials, per a 2014 Gallup poll. In fact, it’s most prevalent for anyone under 50. And, of course, we’re talking text messages for which they’ve opted in!

Text Messages Have Higher Open Rates than Emails

The open rate of text messages is 85% or higher. Compare that to email open rates of roughly 20% or less. This difference can have a dramatic impact on your ability to reach prospects and customers. Need I say more?

Text Messages Are Preferred Over Mobile Apps

Do you use all of the apps on your phone? Users are getting app fatigue and are unlikely to download another app unless it offers significant value. Don’t force your customers to download an app to interact with you. You risk getting deleted. Use texting instead. It’s on every smartphone and everyone knows how to use it.

Millennials Don’t Use Voicemail

The New York Times says voicemails are about as obsolete as swing dancing and are virtually useless to Millennials. I’m not a Millennial, but I’ve been using it less as well. Have you? Part of the reason is voicemails are considered a little more cumbersome, when the same message can be sent instantly with a text. Is your company still making cold calls for sales? With this generation, it’s not a good idea.

Want to reach Millennials with a mobile campaign? Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help.

I’d love to hear what you think in a comment or email me at marcos@momares.com

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Mobile Marketing: Leading Advice & Quotes for 2016

Mobile Marketing in 2016

As a leader in mobile marketing, we’ve predicted the rise of mobile for years. In 2016, mobile is getting more attention as mobile usage now dominates all other forms of communication.

Take a look at these insights on mobile marketing from leading experts to decide if your business is ready for mobile in 2016.

The Most Consequential Year

“2016 will be the most consequential year for companies on the path to customer obsession, and that includes adapting to empowered customers who expect to get anything they want immediately, in context on their mobile devices.” – Julie A. Ask, Forrester Research

Missed Opportunity

“SMS marketing is, truly, the biggest missed opportunity.” – James Harrison, Oxygen8 UK

Staying Power

“SMS has staying power in a world that has become saturated with multiple chat and messaging platforms.” – Brian Patterson, Go Fish Digital

Plays a Key Role

“SMS may be viewed as antiquated technology – but the reality is it that SMS plays a key role in connecting most modern technologies.” – Jamie Tolentino, TNW

In a Renaissance

“SMS, or text messaging, is in a period of renaissance currently.” – Brian Heikes, 3Cinteractive

He goes on to describe a study by SAP global, which showed that 70% of consumers feel SMS is a good way for a company to get their attention and 64% believe organizations should use SMS-type engagement more frequently.

It’s Familiar

“Texting is easy. It’s familiar.” – Kyle Vanhemert, Wired

This is why texting texting will stand the test of time–in contrast with apps which have a learning curve. As Kyle says, it’s a “medium in which we’re already fluent.”

High ROI

“Sending an SMS message is much cheaper than most marketing channels, and it can deliver the same (if not higher) level of ROI.” – Krissy DeAngelis, Waterfall

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How to Promote Your Mobile Campaigns on Social Media

How to promote your mobile marketing campaigns on social.

Whether you’re offering Text 2 Win prizes, mobile coupons or other offers, your campaigns will only succeed as long as you keep promoting them.

We see many clients promoting their campaigns once or twice, then letting them fall off the radar. Are you doing the same? If so, you’re losing opportunities to get new subscribers!  Be consistent about reminding your fans/followers of your text message offers.

Read on for tips on promoting your mobile offers, in some cases on auto pilot.

Promoting (and Scheduling) on Facebook

It’s a no-brainer to promote your campaigns when they launch. But how do you keep it going consistently? Schedule those posts.

Did you know you can schedule posts within Facebook? You can schedule a post to run each week. Here’s how…

1. Enter your text and upload your photo in the post box on your Facebook page. Then, instead of clicking “Publish,” click the down arrow right next to it and select “Schedule.”

How to schedule your mobile promotion on Facebook.

2. Choose the date and time you’d like it to post on Facebook and click “Schedule.”

Scheduling your mobile marketing post on Facebook.

3. Facebook will confirm it has been scheduled. You can see all of your scheduled posts by clicking “Publishing Tools” at the top menu of your Facebook page and “Scheduled Posts” on the left.

A confirmation of your scheduled post on Facebook.

4. Your post will appear at the scheduled time. Make sure to interact with any fans who respond!

Scheduled post on Facebook.

Remember to include your call-to-action. A photo or visual will also help get attention.

Other Networks & Tools

For Twitter we recommend scheduling a message to run once every day or two (at different times).  If you’re posting on LinkedIn, we suggest 2 times a week while the campaign is running.

You can also schedule posts with apps like TwitTimer or Hootsuite.

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3 Things You Should Know About Mobile Coupons in 2016

What you should know about mobile coupons in 2016

The role of mobile couponing in SMS text message marketing is expected to change this year. While couponing is still used to promote a product or brand, the sophistication of tracking technologies and other analytics tools give us more data and offer more options. Here is what you should know about mobile coupons in 2016.

1. Track Purchases and Behavior with Mobile Coupons

In 2016, you can expect to see more emphasis on the mobile coupon as a way to track purchases and consumer behaviors. With sophisticated analytics tools, marketers can now analyze the use of mobile coupons at the individual level to see patterns and trends. With more granular data available, companies can better personalize mobile campaigns to drive higher sales conversion rates and engagement.

2. Retailers Focus Less on Coupon Sites

Part of the shift in mobile coupons has resulted from retailers relying on their own marketing efforts to boost mobile coupon redemption rather than coupon aggregator sites. As a result, retailers are now using SMS marketing campaigns to provide unique coupon codes so that users can be individually tracked. In the end, retailers will rely less on third-party sites to advertise coupon offers.

3. Delivery of Coupons via SMS Will Increase

The use of text message marketing to deliver coupons to consumers will also see an increase in 2016. This is because marketers are beginning to embrace mobile as an integral part of the system of devices and platforms that consumers use to engage with a brand. Jupiter Research estimates that the number of unique mobile users that redeem coupons will rise to 559 million this year. By the end of 2019, this figure is estimated to reach 1.06 billion users.

While mobile coupons are well-established in the United States, there is plenty of growth still to come in this area for marketers. As paper coupons become less common, we can also expect to see more companies using mobile marketing as couponing goes digital.

Want to learn more about using mobile coupons to boost your text message marketing campaign? Contact us or call (305) 505-5393 for help.

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4 Ways Businesses Can Use Text Messages to Boost E-Commerce Sales In 2016

Add text message marketing to your mix and watch you sales go up.
Add text message marketing to your mix and watch you sales go up.

If you’re looking for more ways to boost your e-commerce sales beyond the holiday season, consider text message marketing. Here are a few tips to help your business use text message marketing to boost sales online.

Offer Discounts and Specials

Customers love to receive discounts and special deals from online stores they shop at frequently. To get people to subscribe, let them know they can only get the deal or discount by opting in to your mobile campaign. You can also use mobile deals as a draw to attract first-time customers. Offer them the chance to opt-into your email and mobile list.

Send One-Day Sale Announcements

If you plan to host a one-day sale, text messaging is extremely effective for distributing this kind of time-sensitive offer. Send a text notification a day or two in advance and make sure you include a link to your website sales page so they can make purchases. Not only will this gain you extra sales that day, it can also increase customer loyalty as your subscribers start to rely on your text messages for last-minute sale details.

Add Excitement with Text-to-Win (SMS) Sweepstakes

Every customer loves to receive something for free. By offering a sweepstakes, you can ensure customers will be on the lookout for new text messages from your company. Offer it as a freebie when they sign up or send out the sweepstakes offers to your current list of subscribers.

Promote New Products

Text messaging can also offer a quick way to get the word out about new products. This is best saved for “featured products” around which you’d have a campaign, however. If you promote too many new products every month or week, you’ll quickly turn off your readers and cause them to unsubscribe. Use these announcements in conjunction with other offers instead.

Businesses of all sizes can take advantage of text message marketing to boost e-commerce sales. The key to benefiting from this type of marketing is to understanding what motivates your audience and offering this on mobile. Start texting your customers on a consistent basis and you’ll be on your way to developing a loyal mobile customer base.

Ready to start with your own mobile campaign? Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help with setting up your text message marketing.

 

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Why Subscribers are Opting-Out of Your Mobile Campaign

Are users opting out of your mobile campaigns? A few tips to keep them coming back.

With attention spans getting shorter, it takes creativity and know-how to keep your subscribers from opting out.

While you can expect a few opt-outs with any campaign, there are some scenarios that can cause a higher opt-out rate than normal. Based on our experience, your opt-out rate for a mobile text campaign should average less than 1%. If subscribers are leaving at a higher rate, it’s a clear sign you’re doing something wrong!

Here are a few reasons why mobile subscribers opt-out and what you can do to turn things around:

Irrelevant or Unhelpful Message Content

If subscribers aren’t finding value in your text messages, they won’t waste time in unsubscribing. You have to keep them hooked with every message. Instead of sending bland announcements, make sure every message offers value and has a clear call-to-action. Don’t send a text until you have those two things.

Sending Text Messages Off-Hours

Like sales calls, text messages are only allowed between 8 am and 9 pm—in the subscriber’s time zone, not yours. If your subscribers are local, it’s easy to stay within that time frame. If you’re texting a national list, limit those hours to be safe. For example, send between 11 am and 9pm if you’re on the east coast or between 8 am and 6 pm if you’re on the west coast. You can still upset your subscribers if you text early or late, especially on the weekends, so avoid the beginning and ending times of that schedule and avoid going off-hours altogether. Refer to the full list of rules for text message marketing.

Too Many Offers

Don’t trigger the “annoyance factor” in the minds of your subscribers. Many will opt-out if they feel they’re getting texts too often. To avoid this, you need to learn how much is too much. We usually recommend once a week at most. Adding value and varying the style and content of your text messages can help. Also, make sure your subscribers can actually take advantage of each offer. Otherwise, your texts are too frequent.

So-So Customer Support

Does your business offer customer support for your text messaging program? There may be issues with customers who can’t receive texts because of their plan or their carrier. For that reason, it’s important to work with a mobile marketing firm that can help customers by text, email, phone or all three. Otherwise, those subscribers will ignore your text efforts and respond by unsubscribing.

Learn more about the best practices of text message marketing and contact us for help setting up a campaign.

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Using Mobile Marketing to Promote a Gym or Fitness Center

Mobile marketing for gyms

At the start of every year, people sign up at the gym hoping to make a change for the better. Unfortunately, many don’t keep that commitment all year long.

For fitness centers and gyms, getting customers to keep their membership over the long term is a big problem. Fortunately, mobile marketing can help keep customers motivated and coming back.

Here are a few ways to use mobile marketing to promote a fitness center or gym:

Retain & Engage Current Members

It’s a known business adage that it’s less expensive to retain existing customers than to acquire new ones. Text messaging is a way to increase “touchpoints” with your customers and keep them engaged. Text your members once a week with updates, motivational messages, promotions or offers to keep them coming back.

You can also segment your subscriber list and reach out to subgroups of members. Want to send different updates to those interested in yoga vs. spinning, for example? You can. With segmented lists, you can reach out to different customer groups, based on the data you have on their fitness interests.

Create Workout Notifications

You can also use mobile marketing to send out workout notifications to members who enroll in certain types of classes or training at your gym. These notifications can include reminders about upcoming classes or tips for staying in shape between classes.

Notify Members of Last-Minute Changes

If an instructor is sick and won’t be able to teach class, send a text to let members know. Text messaging is a better option for alerts, which your members are likely to check more frequently than email. This will improve notifications of scheduling changes and will also make your gym seem more organized.

Alert Members When the Gym is Less Crowded

Everyone hates going to the gym when it’s super crowded. If you want to get more people in during slow times, why not send alerts when the gym is free? You can also schedule messages about holiday hours or changes. Sending out messages at the right time can create some buzz right when you need it.

Promote New Services

Mobile marketing is also a great way to promote new services and offers. Alert members about new classes, for example or offer specific services on certain days of the week. Promoting these via text will get the word out quickly and will help members feel like their taking full advantage of their membership.

Are you ready to get started with mobile marketing? Contact us or call (305) 505-5393 for help with setting up a mobile marketing program for a gym or fitness center.

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How to Write Text Messages That Will Spark Action for Your Business

Text messages that cause action

In today’s world of increased drama online and off, it takes a little more something-something to get people to take action. And text message marketing is one way to get your customers to take the next step. (Of course, we’re talking about texts that users opt in to receive.)

If you plan to use mobile marketing to promote your business, make sure you maintain consistency and clarity.  Here are some tips:

Offer Value

One of the best ways to get attention is to make sure every text provides value. Customers love discounts, exclusive promotions and other offers. While you don’t have to give the store away, discounts provide a strong incentive for customers to engage with your mobile campaign.

Keep it Short & Sharp

Keep each message short and sharply focused. Text messages are limited to 160 characters anyway, so you don’t have much room. If you must abbreviate a few words, make sure it still looks professional (i.e. no text slang) and is very easy to understand.

Tell Them What to Do Next

It may seem obvious, but it’s best to give readers a nudge and tell them what to do next. By telling them what’s next (the “call to action”), you’re encouraging them to take that step. It’ll be easier for them to move forward in the buying process and redeem your offer, enter your contest, visit your store or call your business.

Text Frequently, But Not Too Frequently

You should decide early on how frequently you will text your customers. During the sign-up process, let them know how often they can expect text messages from your business. The frequency of messaging is important, because some subscribers may opt-out if you text too often. Whether your customer can buy from you as often as you text is also a good indication of how frequently you should send text messages. We usually recommend once a week, depending on the audience and campaign.

Make it Relevant

Make sure every message is relevant to your subscribers. For example, sending out messages about lunch specials in the afternoon or offering discounts on maternity clothing to a list that includes men aren’t likely to get huge responses. Consider the timing and the audience to ensure every message will appeal to readers.

Want to learn more about setting up a successful mobile campaign? Contact us or call us at (305) 505-5393 for help with setting up your (SMS) text message marketing.