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7 Channels for “Free Promotion” of Your Opt In Campaigns

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How do you get people to opt in to your SMS marketing list?

You ask them, of course.

While there are many ways you can probably think of to promote your SMS opt in campaign, there may be some “free” channels you’re neglecting. Thanks to Google, I can point out seven of them. At the mCommerce Summit Google gave a presentation about app promotion and optimising. I can’t even convey how exasperated the presenter was when he talked about how many opportunities companies just let slip by.

Those same channels can be used to promote your SMS marketing campaigns too – particularly opt in campaigns. Google focused in on these channels because they are “organic”. That is, they are part of what you are doing already so they don’t cost extra – but they can produce great results.

1. Cashiers

When customers check out, do your cashiers ask them if they’d like to opt in to your SMS campaign? After all, the customer is standing right there, they just bought something from you, what better time to ask them to sign up for special offers and future discounts? If you let them leave without asking, you may be throwing away a potentially loyal and valuable customer.

2. Customer Service Calls

We’ve all called customer support at one time or another. At the end of the call the representative usually asks, “Is there anything else I can help you with today?” Or at least the good ones do. But how about just before that, have your representative ask the customer if they’ve signed up for your SMS list yet? If the call went well, the customer may very well want to sign up. It’s an opportunity you don’t want to pass up.

3. Transaction Emails

When a customer gets an order confirmation, or gets a receipt for an in-store purchase, via email do you include a call to action regarding your SMS list? According to Google, it’s a golden opportunity to get sign ups. People tend to read transactional emails more than they do marketing emails. So if you include the instructions for signing up to your SMS list, customers are much more likely to see it.

4. "Snail-mail"

If you’re sending account statements, ads, or merchandise to customers, why not include information on how to opt in to your SMS marketing too? You’re piggy-backing on a shipment or letter that’s already paid for – you just need to add the few words about how to sign up.

5. Website

Do you advertise your SMS campaign on your website? Too many companies forget this huge amount of virtual real estate they have at their fingertips. Is advertising on it technically free? Not really since you’ll need your web designer to add it to the pages, but the return you’ll probably see will make that cost negligible. You’ve already spent money getting people to the website anyway (via SEO, pay-per-click, or other advertising) so why not ask when people arrive?

6. Mobile Site

These days, people may be more likely to see your mobile site than your regular website. Just because mobile sites need to be optimised for the devices, doesn’t mean you can’t also add calls to action in a pop-over or other graphic. In fact, being on a mobile could make it even easier for people to sign up.

7. Push Notifications

So your customers installed your app and agreed to push notifications. That’s great! But what about using those notifications to let people know about your SMS list too? Are you offering a 10% off coupon to everyone that signs up to the list? That would make a perfect notification! People are more and more likely to interact with brands over multiple channels. According to Walgreens, customers that connected with them over three different channels spent six times more than customers who just were on one. You want customers on as many channels as they want to be.

How many of these channels are you using for your opt in campaigns? Share with us in the comments.

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