Relevant SMS + appropriate audience + right time = excellent ROI. Laurie Sloan from Hudlr (Amorphous New Media) explains that personal relevance of this kind gives marketers a unique and powerful advantage in that customers are far more likely to respond to a message tailored to their demographic profile than a generic, catch-all communication message.
In today's interconnected world there are myriad ways to communicate with a chosen audience. Some are expensive and difficult to measure (such as television) whilst others are relatively low cost and highly measurable (such as pay-per-click advertising). They all of course have their own strengths and weaknesses and are appropriate in different contexts but the key is to know when a communication medium is effective or merely a drain on resources.
Thanks to the dynamic digital landscape we operate in nowadays, communication has the remarkable potential to be far more precise and relevant to the recipient it is targeting. Big data can be used to bridge the gap between myopic guesswork and a finely tuned intelligent strategy. But what is even more remarkable is that this jump in accuracy is not mirrored by an equivalent jump in price - it is in fact quite the opposite.
Hyper local marketing, where an individual is targeted according to their unique demographic profile and location, is increasingly being used as a medium to deliver relevant SMS messages to appropriate audiences at particular times. Personal relevance of this kind gives marketers a formidable advantage over catch-all communication messages which we see so much of these days. For example receiving an 'Invest in your child's future with an ABC band education policy' when you don't have any children.
The intelligent use of information such as name, language, location, gender, age, weather, transit etc., can play a powerful role in customising direct messages and increasing their chances of conversion. Statistically, direct SMS messaging has an approximate 90% open rate versus a 10% open rate for email, as people are unlikely to delete a message delivered to their phone without glancing at it. It is also an invaluable means of communication because a limit of 160 characters ensures that the message will be brief and to the point, and the recipient can make up their mind, there and then, if it is something they are interested in.
Furthermore, messages like these can be used as portals or sign-posts for further engagement, whether they provide a link to a mobi-site, distribute voucher codes, give call centre information or allow a customer to close the loop by 'replying yes' to show interest in a product and thereby give consent for further communication.
Amazingly, communication of this kind is significantly cheaper than its 'traditional' counterparts and they provide a service that is highly flexible and measurable. In this way, marketers are able to learn from campaigns immediately and adjust accordingly so that the most effective strategy is implemented with minimal wastage. It is no wonder that hyper-local messaging is gaining enormous momentum and traction in today's competitive marketplace.