Text Message Marketing
In a short span of time, text message marketing has become an instant hit because it is fast, efficient and cheap. In fact, most expert marketers would agree that marketing through the mobile phone should be on top of the list as the most recommended advertising platform today.
Call it mobile text marketing, sms marketing or mobile marketing, the reality is, mobile text message marketing is a specialized advertising marketing strategy that can target those specific local consumers who actually want to rent, buy or sell property.
With the advancements in mobile technology, many small business owners (including Realtors), believe that using these advancements would be very expensive and therefore only for the big corporate giants like Sears or Walmart. They would be very wrong! It is easy, efficient, effective and cheap.
Advertising Through Texting Is The Present And The Future!
One of the main reasons why it should be on the list of the most loved real estate marketing solutions is because approximately 8 out of 10 people world wide are mobile phone users.
Your method of communication with your clients and prospects plays a very important part in the success of your marketing strategies as well as the success of your entire business. Keeping your clients updated keeps them happy and satisfied that they are your loyal customers.
Email marketing & Traditional Direct Mail Marketing
Using postcards, brochures, newsletters and even emails to keep consumers updated has been the customer relationship management plan for some time. In fact, most agents thought that after the telephone, email was the best technology because it has been the quickest way to deliver a message,... until now.
Email marketing does have its challenges, due to the fact that many marketing emails are identified as spam and redirected to junk folders, making it impossible for prospects to read the message sent. That's bad for business.
Challenges such as this, have paved the way for the evolution in mobile technology and text message marketing.
How Does Real Estate Text Message Marketing Work?
Real estate mobile marketing is on the list of "best marketing strategies", allowing you to personalize your approach for targeting prospects and clients in a specific local area. However, before moving forward, we need to understand some text marketing terminology.
What is SMS?
It stands for "Short Message Service", and is also known as text messaging or texting. It is used to send short, 160 character text messages to and from cell phones. Now when you see references to sms marketing or sms advertising, you'll know what it refers to.
What is a shortcode?
CSCs or short codes are five-digit numbers that can receive Short Messaging Service (SMS) text messages, much like normal 10-digit telephone numbers. Five-digit numbers are much more user-friendly and simpler to remember. Each short code requires registration with all of the national mobile service providers if you're planning to operate a national program.
This allows all customers, to transmit a message towards the same number or get a message on their mobile phone.
What is a Call To Action?
A text message marketing call to action invites people to sign up for your mobile subscription list. It can be as simple as telling your clients and prospects to subscribe, as well as displaying simple sign riders on the for sale signs at your listings. You can also integrate your mobile call to action into your existing traditional advertising direct mail marketing pieces or newspaper ads.
You may want to give your clients a reward just because they signed up. Not only should they get the latest news but there should be more for them than they think. That could increase response rate as well as differentiate you from every other Realtor in your market.
Make sure that you include a call to action at the end of every message that you send. That will signal your targeted consumers that they need to do something. It may be as simple as coming to your Open House, or forwarding the message to a friend who might be interested in your listing.
What is a keyword?
A keyword is used to identify a particular campaign on a given shortcode. It's the word the customer texts in to the short code number to get in and receive your message(s) from your campaign. You may select any keyword you wish provided it has not yet been choose by another sms customer. It is best to keep the keywords short and direct to your market. An example of a keyword would be the word JOIN – Text the word “JOIN” to the shortcode number 83936.
What is a subscription list?
Subscribers interested in receiving information are required to opt-in (either by sending the list KEYWORD via text, or through a web widget), and can choose to opt out at any time. You then market to that subscriber list by sending property information, specials, coupons or announcements.
To avoid many of the drawbacks of email and spam, the registration requirements of a mobile initiative and the short code to support it, are strictly regulated. In the USA, each short code should be approved by CSCA (Common Short Code Administration). In Canada CWTA (Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association), is responsible. The Mobile Marketing Association is a mobile industry association currently at the forefront of establishing best practices and industry guidelines with carriers and application providers.
Today, you can add even more to your buyers finger tips. QR codes or barcodes are another way for buyers to get information about your property and will not only satisfy buyers but also your sellers. The incredible growth of QR codes can now be seamlessly included by tagging your ads and for sale signs.
All a buyer needs is a smart phone with a QR code reader and when they scan the QR code on your for sale sign or advertisement, they are sent a link to your mobile web site.
What Is A Text Message Marketing Campaign?
A campaign is an opt-in list of your subscribers text numbers based on one key word. It can be defined as a subscription list or specific marketing event (poll, open houses, etc). A campaign typically utilizes a primary keyword, and you can setup unlimited secondary or alternate keywords. Voting campaigns include unlimited voting keywords and do not require a primary keyword. Therefore a campaign would consist of one keyword such as “PROPERTY” and the list of subscribers who have opted-in to receive information using keyword “PROPERTY”.
If you are one of the first agents in your real estate market who has recognized mobile text message marketing as a cutting edge tool in your real estate business, then you have an advantage. You're already making good use of the potential of this economical kind of advertising. Businesses not yet using it, are already falling behind.
The possibilities are wide ranging for Real Estate Agents. Text message marketing is an incredibly effective tool in the ever-changing real estate market.
It's time to discover how easy it is to get a flood of new customers with text message marketing and for the latest text marketing tips that could increase the response rate from your prospects, clients as well as improve your income.
~ Christian Nevell Bovee
Over 75% of the worlds population now have a mobile phone, that’s over 5 billion mobile subscribers.
3 billion are SMS enabled.
More than 50% of all "local" searches are done from a mobile device.
At the end of March 2011, Canadian wireless phone subscribers numbered 24.7 million.
86% were subscribers with a smartphone voice/data plan.
Half of all phone connections in Canada are now wireless.
75% of Canadian households have access to a wireless phone.
Canadians send 186 million text messages per day.
228 million mobile phone users over age 13.
31% of US mobile subscribers have smartphones.
66% use SMS texting.
Female mobile phone users text 29% more than men, sending and receiving an average of 716 texts per month compared to 555 for male user.