May 24, 2021

Text messages


The messages app is starting to become the most sought-after piece of digital real estate among brands and retailers according to Digiday. That’s because brands are finding it more difficult to get customers to pay attention to emails, as some customers have now signed up for email updates from dozens of brands after a decade-plus of on-line shopping. Additionally, the upcoming iOS14 update threatens marketers’ ability to use targeted ads on ...sites like Facebook. As part of the iOS14 update, iPhone users now must opt in for apps to track their browsing histories. If customers don’t, marketers will no longer be able to use their browsing history on past sites, like e-commerce sites, to serve them targeted ads. Because people still use text messages to primarily communicate with friends and family, text messaging is one of the last methods of digital communication that hasn’t been completely overrun by brands. But since it’s still not primarily used as a marketing channel, marketers are still trying to figure out just how many texts from a brand customers will tolerate. According to marketing platform Omnisend, the number of SMS messages sent by the more than 50000 companies that use Omnisend’s software increased by 378% between 2019 and 2020, while email campaigns were up 108%. One of the most common ways that marketers are using the channel is texting customers alerting them to sales. Brendan Hastings, director of engineering at brand Thinx, noted that the company used SMS to promote its August sale in 2020. He said that Thinx has found that SMS messages receive open rates close to 100%, where email open rates are 15-30%. Other instance, when Olipop released a limited-time blackberry vanilla flavor in December 2020, the company received $15000 worth of sales in 15 minutes from people on its SMS list. Olipop’s email list still drove slightly more sales — but the company has ten times more email subscribers than it does SMS subscribers.

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