Get Ahead with These 2021 SMS Marketing Trends

SMS marketing messaging has been growing steadily over the past few years. The latest stats show that globally about 90% of consumers prefer text communication, and that these messages are 35% more likely to be read than emails. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in many more people using their phones for virtually every aspect of their lives and SMS messaging is very much part of that reality.

A Quick Look at eCommerce Growth

eCommerce was already an established shopping practice before COVID-19 but has really taken off since 2020. The pandemic has had a marked effect on customer buying practices with many using mobile devices for online shopping. In Australia, four in five households purchased online, which translates to 9 million. This was driven by the need to stay safe during the health crises with many consumers not feeling confident to go into physical stores.

SMS Marketing Trends for 2021

Covid has changed the way we do life, and especially how we communicate on a personal and business level. Most of this interaction is now done in the digital space, and this is the perfect opportunity to rethink how you communicate with your customers.

SMS text marketing is the perfect tool for getting your message to a larger audience – at the click of a button. In Australia, it is forecast that 61% of businesses will increase SMS marketing budgets as a result of the pandemic. We take a look at the 9 SMS marketing trends for 2021 and into the future.

1. SMS Marketing and Usage Will Continue to Grow

Since the beginning of the pandemic consumers worldwide have found that they are receiving more marketing messages, and the research indicates that this will grow by about 40% globally in 2021. As businesses develop innovative ways to keep in touch with their customers, SMS Text marketing will significantly contribute to this increase in digital communication. One of the reasons for this is because customers are more trusting of SMS marketing, and view it as less likely to be spam. SMS is a relatively new marketing channel so companies can still put out a unique message and be truly competitive with instant communication. The different applications of SMS including updates and promotions means that SMS messaging is a perfect stand alone marketing tool.

Cellcast takes it one step further offering easy bulk text messaging using a streamlined process that allows you to create your own campaign from any device.

2. More Brands Will Adopt SMS as a Customer Service Channel

Marketing departments have always relied on the supporting role of customer service to make true on the company’s brand promise. With instant communication being the norm, consumers expect speedy feedback to their inquiries and will readily share poor service on the different social media applications. Research shows that globally over 50% of customers prefer the option of being able to text customer support rather than speaking to someone on the phone. Customer service can also provide support using SMS to do the following –

  • Order confirmations
  • Delivery tracking information
  • Appointment reminders
  • Appointments reschedule
  • Answers to frequently asked questions
  • Product and service feedback

3. SMS Will Improve the Performance of Other Marketing Strategies

Another aspect of SMS messaging is how it will be used to support other marketing channels. One of these applications is email newsletter support with SMS sent as a reminder to subscribers that the newsletter has been sent to their inbox. Because of the high opening and reading rate for SMS it is likely that the email newsletter will get read. Expectations are that SMS will also collaborate with social media. Your latest blog details can be sent to subscribers via direct link in an SMS.

4. 10-Digit Numbers Are On the Rise

With businesses planning to expand their use of SMS messaging, and customers preferring text to phone calls, 10-digit toll-free numbers are the perfect fit. This option allows you to engage with your customers via SMS messages 1-on-1 and also in sending large campaigns. For those industries where voice calls are still important, you can use the same number for both voice and text messages. Customers perceive the 10-digit phone number as safe.There is also the option of a local recognisable 10-digit long code number that belongs just to you – which means you can message millions of people in one large campaign.

5. Promotions, Sales, and Special Offers via SMS Marketing Are Increasing

Globally businesses are finding that SMS messaging translates into nearly 14% conversion rate, and these results are fast making it a popular choice as a marketing channel for sales and promotions. The findings also show a high opt-in worldwide to receive text messages from businesses – about 49 million. SMS marketing is also used to enhance brand loyalty by launching VIP programs and birthday/anniversary specials.

6. Increased Focus on Using Automated SMS Messaging to Keep Customers Up-To-Date

With so much change due to the global pandemic, and many businesses operating online, customers’ expectations have changed and so has their demand for effective engagement. Automated SMS messaging plays an important role in keeping customers up-to-date with their order status, and can also be used in the following applications:

  • Abandoned carts reminders
  • Appointment reminders
  • Order status updates
  • Confirmations
  • Review requests

Another thing that has changed is that customers want to receive marketing offers via SMS texts.. This makes for improved relationships and easy transactions for both businesses and customers.

7. SMS Will Become An Effective Tool For Gathering Feedback

Research has shown that worldwide as many as 88% of shoppers check reviews before buying, and actually value these reviews almost as much as personal recommendations. You can harness this powerful tool by using SMS messaging to ask your customers for a review of their purchase. This follow-up indicates customer care, and your business benefits by reflecting the feedback on your store site for future customers. You can also include a review link in the text message which makes it easy and fast for customers to send their feedback.

8. More Businesses Will Adopt B2B SMS Marketing Strategies

SMS messaging as part of marketing and sales strategies in the Business-to-Business sector has started to grow over the last couple of years. It is predicted that this will increase in 2021 as SMS is used more for lead generation, sending valuable content, and communicating with existing clients.

9. More Influencers Will Adopt SMS Marketing Strategies

Influencer marketing is a strategy that has been used for some years with social media platforms being the usual vehicles for this. With businesses always on the lookout for innovative ways to increase this effectiveness, SMS messaging is set to become a powerful channel for influencer marketing. The advantages of SMS is that it makes ROI calculations easier and enables businesses to grow their subscriber list. This is done by offering discount codes linked to influencers. Research shows that globally 72% of customers are only interested in personalised marketing messages that reflect their interests.

With Cellcast it is simple to personalise bulk SMS campaigns which includes the customer’s and sender’s name. This helps create strong relationships.

Get More Out of Your SMS Marketing With Cellcast

Cellcast.com.au is a leading SMS messaging service in Australia. We offer over 10 years experience in the communication industry. Using both SMS and MMS marketing, we help our clients increase their open rates and conversions. Our SMS API makes it easy to integrate our services with your other applications. You can send SMS online, and easily track your data to improve campaigns as you go. Contact us on 1 (03) 8560 7025 or complete this form. You can also register here for your free trial and download our information pack. We look forward to working with you and helping you connect with your clients in a meaningful way.


By Andrew Kelly | Categories: Cellcast SMS & MMS | Tags:

About the Author: Andrew Kelly

After completing a PHD in telecommunications Andrew found himself as interested in the literature as the technology itself. Andrew now writes engaging and informative prose at Cellcast sunny office in Melbourne, for offices across the globe.

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