SMS marketing 101: How to use text messaging in your marketing strategy

SMS copywriting example.

6 SMS Marketing Tips for Copywriting (With Examples)

Copywriting can make or break the success of your SMS marketing campaign. To succeed, you need to be able to get your message across as quickly and easily as possible. Follow these SMS copywriting tips, and you’ll do just that.

In the age of instant and personalized communication, short message service — more commonly known as SMS — reigns supreme. According to SimpleTexting, about 60% of people check text messages within 1–5 minutes of receiving them. It’s one of the few marketing channels where you’re likely to not just reach but also engage your customers. What’s more, 96% of marketers who use SMS marketing say that it helps them drive more revenue.

While the channel packs serious potential for improving engagement and conversion rates, there are certain things you need to get right to win at SMS marketing. One of them is SMS copywriting. There’s a lot more that goes into copywriting for SMS marketing than simply keeping your texts short and sweet. And it’s not like marketers have a choice in this matter; the character limit for a single text is only 160!

Crafting compelling copy for your text message marketing campaigns is tough. Approach it with the following SMS marketing best practices in mind to successfully engage and convert your customers.

Use one idea per message

Every day, mobile phones buzz with notifications of messages sent from businesses competing to get their customers’ attention. This excess of ads, emails, and of course, text messages, is resulting in information overload. According to research by Frontiers, customers have a hard time making decisions when there’s too much information to process.

Research by the Technical University of Denmark suggests that the constant exposure to content is narrowing our collective attention span. In the context of SMS copywriting, that means you should limit every text to just one idea. Make sure that your message revolves around a single promotion or product and has one call to action (CTA). Always proofread your copy to ensure you’re not cramming in multiple ideas, promotions, or CTAs in your text before sending it out.

SMS example from Jack in the Box.

Types of SMS marketing campaigns

Promotional campaigns

Coupons and promotions can be an excellent way to drive more people to your store or website, especially when accompanied by a quality call to action (CTA). Here’s an SMS marketing example from fashion brand Jenni Kayne, which includes a personalized coupon code and a direct link to their shop page:

example of sms marketing

Transactional campaigns

Transactional SMS marketing messages are sent in response to an event or action. These campaigns offer information that is time-sensitive and relevant to the customer, such as appointment reminders, shipping notifications or password resets. Because these messages are so timely and relevant, they have a high open-rate and can be very effective in driving conversions.

An example of a transactional SMS campaign is an order confirmation from an ecommerce purchase. Here’s an example from Baking Steel that includes order confirmation, tracking information and an unsubscribe option.

example of sms marketing

Why do businesses use SMS marketing?

Reach customers faster

Increase response rates

Unlike other marketing channels, SMS allows you to reach your customers directly on their mobile devices. Because of this, text messages have a much higher response rate than other marketing channels. Response rates can help keep your customers engaged with your SMS marketing and open opportunities for further offers.

To increase response rates, try including a CTA in your text messages to encourage customers to take the next step. For example, you could include a CTA like “Reply YES to RSVP,” or “Click the link to learn more.”

Complement other marketing channels

While an SMS marketing strategy is strong on its own, it can also be used to enhance other marketing channels. For example, you could use SMS to promote a contest or sale on social media or include a link to an email newsletter in your text messages. You could also use SMS to remind customers of an upcoming event or webinar, in order to increase signups.

Build customer loyalty

SMS marketing can build loyalty with your customers, as it allows you to send personalized messages and offers to individuals. This is a great way to make your customers feel valued, and increase the chances of them returning to your business in the future.

Increase revenue

SMS marketing can help you increase revenue by driving traffic to your store or website. You can use SMS messages to promote special sales and events and include a call to action that encourages customers to take advantage of the offer. You could also use SMS messages to remind customers about items they’ve left in their shopping cart, encouraging them to complete their purchases.


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