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The Disadvantages of SMS Marketing

August 27, 2011

http://bit.ly/pNNjHC The vast expansion of the mobile phone platform offers a tremendous opportunity to marketers, who can present their message to a wide variety of people at low cost via SMS, or text messaging. However, marketers must navigate this platform’s pitfalls for maximum effectiveness.

United States law considers a text message sent via SMS the same as a call. As such, laws about telemarketing and unsolicited calling come into play. It’s illegal to deliver unsolicited SMS messages to a cell phone network. Marketing best practices dictate that marketers need permission to send messages via SMS. Violators are subject to harsh fines.

SMS marketing is unique in that the recipient can occur costs for receiving a message. Typically, cellular networks charge both the sender and the recipient of a text message, while only the outbound caller on a traditional telemarketing call incurs a cost. This added fee could frustrate recipients and lead to a bad image for your brand if recipients consider the SMS marketing message a nuisance.

SMS marketing gives businesses a technologically savvy way to reach out to their customer bases by sending text messages to their cellular phones using short message services. Businesses use SMS marketing to communicate sales and promotions, product launches and other important, timely information to their customers using web-based solutions.

SMS marketing gives business owners and their marketing teams the opportunity to send a unified message to its entire customer base or to segments. More efficient than making phone calls to several customers, SMS marketing is a convenient one-touch approach to distributing a message to customers.

Businesses can ask for a customer’s permission to add them to their SMS marketing database for the purpose of receiving product and promotion information. Customers who sign up receive alerts serve as potential leads for sales and services, since they’ve already expressed some interest in the business. The FTC doesn’t have any formal regulations in place for SMS marketing, although Direct Mag reports that they are monitoring the impact of consumers receiving unwanted text messages. Direct Mag also reports that many wireless carriers are blocking volumes unsolicited messages monthly to protect their consumers.

Consider this: 87 percent of the population of the United States own a cell phone, the average cell phone user sends and receives more SMS texts than phone calls, there are over 40 million users of the mobile Internet, an average of 4.1 billion text messages sent every day, and, text messages are read within 15 minutes of being received. Are you still wondering about the importance of SMS marketing?

Text messaging is the most widely used data application on the planet. There are more than 270 million SMS text messaging users in the U.S. alone, who are potential target audiences for your SMS marketing campaigns.

SMS emerged as an accidental success in 1999. At that time, few people realized that the easiest, quickest, and most cost-effective form of one-to-one communication had been born. SMS stands for Short Message Service. Through its functionality, you can send messages of 160 characters or less, called text messages, to mobile phones. Text messaging enables information to be sent to groups of people quickly, in much the same way as email, making it an increasingly popular e-marketing channel. As a marketing medium, SMS provides high reach at a low cost with high retention. It’s a marketer’s dream.

Face it, we live in a mobile world. SMS has become a mainstream communication tool. Mobile or SMS marketing is a necessity if companies want to reach today’s consumer. A recent study by Nielsen Mobile states that 23 percent of U.S. mobile phone users remember seeing mobile advertising in the last month and over 50 percent responded to the ad. The response rate for a more traditional marketing medium-TV-is usually less than 1 percent. ger @box @dropbox @dropshots @expono @fotki @foursquare @gdocs @identi @imageshack @kewego @lj @moby @photobucket @pingfm @plaxo @plerb @plurk @shutterfly @snapfish @sonico @tumblr @twitpic @twitter @yfrog @youtube

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