The phenomenon that is texting gives SMS tremendous potential as a marketing tool. That and the fact that just about everyone seems to have a smart or not so smartphone capable of sending and receiving these short messages. While this exciting new form of mobile marketing has a lot to offer, it is best suited for an integrated marketing strategy. This post will discuss how it can work beside your email marketing program.

Add More Subscribers to Your Lists

SMS marketing is like email marketing in many ways, especially when it comes to building your list. In order to engage users with your mobile content, you must get their permission, in addition to their phone number. And just like email, you need to give potential subscribers a compelling reason to hand over the goods. Maybe it’s a free gift, valuable information or just the promise of irresistible savings. Whatever it is, it should be integrated into the message you communicate at every point of interaction. This includes the cash register, direct mail pieces and the preference center you have online for your customers. Play your cards right and you may be able to capture SMS and email subscriptions in one fell swoop.

Use Them Together in Your Communication Strategy

The idea behind picking up SMS is not to replace email but to actually use them together for the greater benefit of your overall marketing efforts. Using both methods to engage readers with timely communications can help to ensure that your brand is always fresh on their minds. For instance, let’s say your ultimate goal is to build up attendance for your next seminar with event marketing. If so, you could use email to send along the initial invitation and get the word out, and then follow up with text reminders as the event draws closer. In this case SMS is best for following up because people are very likely to open and read just about every text message they receive.

Know Their Strengths and Weaknesses

Email marketing and SMS both have their respective strengths and weaknesses. Understanding them is the key to using both tactics effectively in a tandem marketing strategy. Many of us utilize email to connect our audience to relevant content through newsletters, promotions and special offers. Because SMS communications are generally brief in nature it would be best to send your mobile subscribers shorter messages that are quick and painless to read. You definitely don’t want people to have to scroll through a text message – because most won’t.

SMS can provide you with an easy entry into the mobile marketing game, but that doesn’t necessarily mean having success will be a piece of cake. You have to be very cautious not to come off as intrusive even if you are sending messages to subscribers who willingly gave you permission. Spam could easily become a problem on the mobile platform if we as marketers are not sensitive to the consumer’s privacy and preferences.