Christmas SMS Marketing for Retailers
So let’s admit it – Christmas is just around the corner. Well actually there is still the best part of a quarter of a year between now and then, but the briefest of looks around any bricks and mortar retail establishment will leave you convinced that Jingle Bells are imminent. And whatever your opinion about it, if you hang around for long enough you’ll notice something else too – people are buying into it. With customers already getting into the swing of Christmas shopping this early, the time to act and draw attention to your offerings is now – and SMS Marketing is a great way to do it.
Why does SMS Marketing matter?
It is easy to think, in a world filled with incredibly advanced computer technology, that the humble SMS is anything but relevant. You could be forgiven for writing it off as obsolete, especially when as a retailer you have likely invested some serious money into developing a stylish, modern website. The chances are you have also committed significant funds into digital and traditional marketing. So why would you ever want to start putting money into something that is so fundamentally simple and unglamorous? The answer lies in those exact attributes.
Because SMS messaging technology is built in as standard to every single mobile phone on the market, everybody can send and (more importantly) receive text messages regardless of the technology they are using – and when the percentage of the adult population in possession of a mobile phone is edging ever closer to 100%, this matters more than ever. Given that the vast majority of people have their phone on them or within reach almost all of the time, at any given moment an SMS Marketing message has an exponentially greater likelihood of being opened and read than any other marketing channel.
It is also worth noting that there is still a significant gap between possession of a mobile phone versus possession of a smartphone – approximately 1 in 5 adult phone users don’t have one – meaning that an SMS Marketing strategy can give you access to a considerably larger audience than a mobile marketing campaign that relies on handheld web browsers.
So what is the actual difference between a smartphone and a mobile phone? Here are the dictionary definitions:
a mobile phone that performs many of the functions of a computer, typically having a touchscreen interface, Internet access, and an operating system capable of running downloaded apps.
a telephone with access to a cellular radio system so it can be used over a wide area, without a physical connection to a network.
Another reason that SMS matters is that SMS text messages have a personal feel and create a sense of urgency that no technology has ever been able to truly recreate. Whilst the plethora of online communications apps such as Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp do also demand user’s attention, they have never been able to seize attention the same way as the text message has. Couple this with the fact that customers can only receive SMS Marketing messages from companies they have explicitly authorised and have actively chosen to hear from and the result is a channel that has massive potential for return.
How can I use SMS Marketing for my retail business this Christmas?
The only real limit to how you can use SMS Marketing to win both new and existing customers over and increase seasonal sales is your imagination. But in order to help you, here are some simple examples of how SMS Marketing can be used to get your business ahead of the game as we approach the Christmas shopping season:
- Discounts: Customers love feeling like they have special access to a bargain – especially at the most expensive (and competitive) time of the year. Beat your competitors by getting in early and sending customers a text with a simple discount code to use on their next purchase through your website or instore.
- Special Offers: Relay offers on key festive lines such as deal of the week, buy one get one free or a free gift with a purchase over a certain value. Again, all can be summed up in a short text providing a code to enter into your website’s shopping cart or present at the tills.
- Sales: Notify customers of early bird sales and discounts on your Christmas range. A simple text announcing the type and dates of sale can help to direct more customers to your store or website when they otherwise may have missed it from not checking their emails or browsing your website recently.
- Loyalty Programs: Keep customers informed of their points tally and send them rewards for being part of the club. Or just reward them for being a loyal SMS subscriber. Customers like to feel that their loyalty is being recognised and rewarded – especially if they are spending extra to please their family and friends. Consider offering bonus points to entice them to spend with you rather than competitors.
- New Lines/Products: Inform regular customers when you have new seasonal or gift items due to come in or in stock and give them the website link to view. A simple example would be: ‘’Christmas 2017 His & Hers gift range arriving 1st Nov. Click link for range preview’’ Tap into those who like to be first to have the latest items.
- Order & Delivery Status: As courier companies get ever more tech-savvy, customers expect more than ever to be kept informed of their order status. SMS texts can relay the information quickly wherever the customer may be and help them to relax safe in the knowledge that the right presents are arriving nice and early.
- News & Tips: Upsell and provide great customer service by sending links to relevant and interesting topics related to the products you sell. For example, if you sell cycling accessories then you could send something like “Christmas is coming. Top tips and products to make sure you and your bike are ready for the winter weather, click link (to your website)’’. You might wish to link the article to ideal gift products for the passionate cyclist, for example.
Here at Fastsms, we are passionate about helping businesses of every shape and size succeed all year round with our competitively priced business bulk SMS messaging solutions. With our easy sign-up and exceptional customer support, you can be ready to get your Christmas SMS Marketing campaign underway in no time. To find out more about how we can help you to grow, call now on 0800 945 5305.
Shoppers are very tech savvy. Even when they shop in store they are using their mobiles to do price comparisons, look up reviews or post on social media. And while your customers are busy using tech, your store needs to be using it too. SMS is one of those technologies that can really enhance the shopping experience whether your shoppers are in store, or not.
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