The Anatomy of a Successful Text Message
Did you know that 80% of professionals currently use SMS messages for business purposes? That’s a huge percentage! In a day and age where over-communication is more rampant than ever, it’s as equally important to carefully choose the content in your broadcasts as it is to utilize them for your business. Let’s be honest; we’ve all received that never-ending, rambling, and pointless text or voicemail. Not even 3 seconds in and we’ve already lost interest. If you want your messages to get better responses, here are 5 must-follow tips:
1. PROVIDE AN AUTHENTIC EXPERIENCE
Our cell phones have become an extension of our personalities. Because people receive texts from their friends, family, and romantic interests, they closely pay attention to every text that crosses their screen. It’s important to be able to speak your target customer’s language and use phrases that are relatable to them. Good communication is about the listener, the reader, the customer- it’s not about you. Even though the professional language is a necessity in some industries, we aren’t living in a “Respectfully Yours” era. Formality is old-fashioned. Instead of using a monotone style of language (Bueller, Bueller, Bueller?), try to speak conversationally and use words that emotionally register with your audience.
2. MAKE IT PERSONAL
Texting has evolved into something rather personal. Part of what sets today’s business texts (or voice broadcasts) apart from those spammy, unwanted, “interrupt-your-dinner calls” is that they provide the opportunity to give meaningful, personalized information. To quote Meg Ryan’s character in You’ve Got Mail: “Whatever else anything is, it ought to begin by being personal.”
At Call-Em-All, our platform offers a personalization feature that inserts custom fields (First Name, Last Name, Company, etc.) into your text broadcast by automatically filling in your contact’s information. Adding a little bit of personalization in your text shows your recipient that they aren’t just another number.
3. IDENTIFY YOURSELF
While Call-Em-All offers the added benefit of providing a toll-free number for our customers to use, your recipients may not initially recognize it. We’ve all been there! You’ve received a text from an unknown number, and suddenly a hundred different scenarios play through your head. Is it someone you know and forgot to store their contact information? Do you play along like you totally know who this mystery person is and risk making Happy Hour plans with a total stranger? (The answer is no!)
Making sure your audience knows who is sending the broadcast is just as important as sending it in the first place. Call-Em-All offers a new text templates feature that will allow you to add a previously created text message into your text broadcast. Whether you use a template as a personal introduction or as a signature, your audience will be able to identify you.
Due to recent renovations, the Citadel’s Library in Oldtown will be closed until Wednesday, January 30th. - Samwell Tarley, Student at The Citadel (email@example.com)
4. LESS IS MORE
Part of the appeal for texting is that the messages are concise. Too much verbiage (yes, it’s a real word) hurts our ability to communicate and provide valuable content honestly. This is the reason why Call-Em-All limits the broadcast to 320 characters. Check out the examples below:
Brief and To The Point:
Hey Sansa, Winter storms are escalating in the Winterfell area. A friendly reminder that practice will be canceled tomorrow. - Jon
Too Much Verbiage:
Hey Sansa, Winter storms are getting pretty bad, and we should expect a lot more snowfall and a significant drop in temperature in the Winterfell area. Because of this, we are canceling practice tomorrow. Sorry for the inconvenience, but we think it is the smart move for everyone. - Jon, King in the North
5. OPTIMIZE DELIVERY TIMES & DAYS
The weekend has finally arrived, and you’ve been looking forward to catching up on that much-needed sleep. You’re snuggled up in bed with your head laying on your favorite pillow dozing off as the dog strategically lays beside you. Then SUDDENLY, ping ping pingggg. You’re woken up by the all-too-familiar chime of your cell phone receiving a text at 1:00 AM. Your peaceful slumber is now interrupted with an appointment reminder for a meeting with Dr. Strange next Monday.
Rule of Thumb: Try to avoid sending messages too early or late in the day, consider different time zones, and try not to message team members outside of business hours unless it is urgent or you have a personal relationship with them beyond work.
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Megan Scott is a Marketing Intern at Call-Em-All, an automated calling and texting company that provides solutions for small and medium-sized businesses, large corporations, membership organizations, community groups, and individuals. Megan is currently pursuing her Master of Business Administration - Marketing degree at Abilene Christian University. Megan is also a graduate of St. Edwards University.