Guide to using web links and mobile landing pages in SMS Marketing
Use links to show customers rich media information in your SMS marketing campaign.
Keep the message nice and short. You have 160 characters but including a link allows you to show lots more than the SMS can contain. To encourage people to act on the SMS have a clear call to action in the message: for example “Click to claim a 15% coupon”. Encourage people to click through by telling them it’s mobile ready. For example “Click to claim a 15% coupon on our mobile site”.
Phones are clever - they can detect a link in a text message and make it clickable, but what’s the best format to use? Our studies have found people prefer links with www instead of ones beginning with http://
For any marketing campaign to work the consumer must trust the SMS and the contents. Make sure the Sender ID is set. Be professional - don’t use text language in your message. Try avoid using URL shortners - services like bit.ly are great and will save you some characters but most people don’t associate the link with your brand and might be put-off on clicking through. If your goal is to encourage people to visit your store try using one of our links like www.directions.to . We have a range of urls you can use that make sense to the consumer.
Not everyone in the U.K. has a smartphone but they are now the majority. In December 2012 Ofcom stated 58% of all U.K. phones are smartphone The same report stated 23.1% of U.K. smartphone users used their device to visit retail websites. A lot of feature phones can connect to the internet so make sure they can view your mobile landing page.
It might sound obvious but when the link in the SMS is clicked the site must be optimised for mobile. It should work on smart and feature phones and it should be quick to load. Don’t include lots of pictures (they could take a long time to load). In your mobile landing page organise the page into sections like ‘Opening Hours’, ‘Coupons’, ‘Gallery’ or ‘Video’.
We think the landing page should have big clear call to action buttons like ‘Claim’, ‘Call’ or ‘Directions’. Finally, Don’t overload the page with information – like the text message be precise.
If you have personal information for the customer for example their first name you should include this in the SMS and in the mobile page - it makes a great impression. On clicking the link most smartphones are able to determine the location of the person so you can do clever things like a store locator feature which dynamically finds the nearest and updates the page with the stores details. You could provide directions or updates from local transport.
Sending marketing SMS with links is pointless unless you can measure how well the campaign is doing. You should consider measuring:
Click rate & returning visits
Activity while on the mobile page
Share rate i.e. sending to people or social networks
The location of person when they clicked
Breakdown of customer phone type
To conclude - SMS is a fantastic way of connecting with your customer but it’s limited to just plain text. When you’ve got more to say than text message can hold - MoreThan160 is the answer.
Slides available here: http://www.slideshare.net/skehillr/guide-to-links-in-sms