Is SMS Marketing The New Email Marketing?

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Is email marketing dead?

I hear this all of the time usually from people who have a serious case of shiny new object syndrome, people who jump from marketing fad to marketing fad and getting nowhere.

I’ve been involved in email marketing for almost 10 years and I can tell you that email marketing is far from dead, in fact, it is still one of the best ways for any company to generate leads and drive sales.

But…there is one platform that has been around since the early 90’s that quite frankly K.O’s email marketing.

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It’s so good that we try to use as often as we can without annoying our customers.

What is it?

SMS marketing or mass text message marketing.

4 Reasons Why I Love SMS Marketing

Text Messaging Is Easy

When putting together an email marketing campaign I have to run through a laundry list of tasks, here’s just a few:

  1. Select the product or offer
  2. Come up with a handful of catchy angles
  3. Write at least 20 subject lines before deciding on the one I think will get the most people to open the email
  4. Write the first draft of the email
  5. Choose the graphics
  6. Compile the email
  7. Send the first draft around to get proofread by the team
  8. Make necessary updates to the copy
  9. Send the updated draft around to the team
  10. Check that the links and buttons are working
  11. Check that the landing page carries the same tone as the email
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That’s just ONE email campaign and I used to do 42 of these per month on top of my other marketing duties.

Let’s look at an SMS campaign:

  1. Select product or offer
  2. Write text
  3. Send text message copy to team
  4. Check links
  5. Check landing page

Only 5 steps but each of these steps is a lot quicker than its email counterpart.

No SPAM Filters

Email marketing is plagued with algorithms specifically designed to prevent your email from getting through.

Did you know that there are more than 400 commonly used trigger words that could send your email straight to the SPAM folder?

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Not only that but you also have to deal with your email service provider’s reputation score. The lower the reputation score, the less of your emails get through.

When you consider all of the work that goes into creating an email campaign it makes you question the whole thing.

SMS marketing, on the other hand, has no SPAM algorithms or reputation scores.

You send your text message and it gets delivered, period.

SMS Marketing Open And Response Rates Are Superior

At the end of the day, the only real thing that matters is the effectiveness of a marketing channel.

Regardless of the hype around it, can it actually deliver a consistent result? There’s no point shoveling a bunch of money into an advertising channel that doesn’t deliver.

As a marketer, what I’m most interested in is the response rates and when it comes down to it, there is a clear winner between these two mediums.

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Email marketing

  • Average open rate is approximately 20% across all industries.
  • Average response rate (i.e. people who click on a link inside email) is 4%.

SMS Marketing

  • SMS marketing open rates are 82-98%
  • SMS marketing response rates? 19%

While we’ll never abandon email because it still generates the bulk of the revenue for the business when it comes to email campaign vs. SMS campaign, SMS consistently pulls in more revenue and so we use it in combination with the email to get the most bang for our buck.