10 SMS Marketing Best Practices for More Effective Campaigns

SMS Marketing Best Practices

SMS marketing remains as one of the best ways to engage with existing and prospective customers. Whether you’re looking to communicate with your current audience or want to reach out to new leads, SMS marketing is a practical, cost-effective solution that can help you reach your audience in real-time.

Business SMS benefits from its ability to reach customers when they’re most receptive. When you send SMS messages, they are sent directly to your customer’s phones, allowing them to view them immediately.

It’s also important to remember that text messages are highly personal. Through SMS, it takes around 90 seconds for someone to respond compared to 90 minutes on average for an email, proving SMS’ efficiency.

Knowing the best way to do things can mean the difference between a successful SMS campaign and a waste of resources. This infographic will showcase key SMS marketing best practices that businesses should adopt to give their future campaigns the best chance at success.

SMS Marketing Best Practices - Infographic

SMS Marketing Best Practices That Make a Real Difference


  • Respect privacy and security

Today, hackers have improved their abilities to breach different systems and gather personal information. These days, people have become more cautious about sharing personal information online, but because of how digitized society has become, it has become all but unavoidable.

In the case of SMS marketing, it’s essential that you have a strong and secure system that ensures that all data is safe. Additionally, if a customer does not want to receive messages, you should respect their decision and delete their contact information from your CRM database.


  • Ask SMS marketing recipients to opt-in

Asking SMS recipients to “opt-in” is similar to a call-to-action (CTA). If they show interest in what your business has to offer, they can consider subscribing to SMS messages. Once they do, you can send a text that indicates a keyword asking them to confirm. 

The worst thing you can do is send bulk messages to your entire audience because some may not be interested in receiving SMS and can deem them as spam. You will lose trust, and your brand image will suffer as a result.


  • Send your messages at the right time

It’s important to remember that people are busy most of the day and have a lot going on. Sending an SMS message when they’re not expecting it could make them feel like they’re being spammed or harassed by someone they don’t know.

That’s why it’s vital to send the messages at the right time, which is when people are likely to read them. When you know what times are best for your customers to receive SMS messages, you’ll increase engagement with your brand and build loyalty over time.


  • Offer immediate value

Businesses should offer immediate value to their customers in SMS messages because it is a great way to drive sales and engagement. 

By offering something of value, you are showing the customer that you care about them and that you want them to continue doing business with you. This step will help build trust between the two parties, which can lead to them being more receptive down the road.


  • Be consistent (branding, timing, and frequency)

When a business sends out an SMS message to its customers, it’s an opportunity to build trust and brand loyalty. But if that message is inconsistent in terms of branding, timing, and frequency, the business will send mixed signals to its customers.

Instead of changing things without explanation or notice, businesses should keep sending their messages consistently so their customers can count on them being there when and how they expect them to be there.


  • Be responsive to replies

If you send an SMS message to a customer, and that customer replies, then it’s crucial for you to respond as soon as possible. 

If you don’t respond quickly, it’s going to make your customer feel like they’re not important and that their needs aren’t being met. That feeling can lead customers to think of you as unreliable or untrustworthy—and ultimately, they might choose not to buy from you.

But if you are able to respond quickly when your customers reply after receiving an SMS message from you, they’ll feel like they’re getting the attention they deserve. They’ll feel valued, which will help them trust that business even more.


  • Provide an opportunity to unsubscribe

Many companies assume that it’s okay to keep sending SMS messages to their customers for as long as they want. But this isn’t the case. If a customer wants to unsubscribe from your company’s SMS messages, then they should be able to easily do so.

It’s not just about goodwill or building trust with your customers; it’s also about staying compliant with the law. Even if you’re not a big company, you still have to comply with regulations that protect consumers’ privacy rights and prevent them from being harassed by marketers who won’t stop nagging them with unwanted text messages.


  • Use a conversational tone

Businesses should send SMS messages with a conversational tone because people are more likely to engage with a message that sounds like they’re talking to a person rather than a machine.

A conversational tone makes it easier for customers to respond when they receive an SMS message. It also helps strengthen relationships between businesses and customers by making it clear that the company understands their needs and wants to help them out.


  • Use common language

When sending an SMS message, you need to remember that not everyone will understand what you mean when you use abbreviated terms or jargon.

You can avoid this by using common language in your messages. It will help ensure that everyone understands what you’re saying and won’t misinterpret your intentions or get confused about when they should respond back.


  •  Add an element of exclusivity

In today’s digital world, businesses are constantly competing for the attention of their customers. In order to win that battle, businesses need to differentiate themselves from their competitors in some way—whether it’s through pricing, brand recognition, or customer service.

One way to do this is by adding an element of exclusivity when sending out SMS messages. The sender will only provide these types of messages to customers who have opted-in to receive them, giving them a feeling of exclusivity and importance.

Straight Road to Success

SMS marketing still holds its value today, and businesses should capitalize on it to increase sales. The SMS practices discussed aim to maximize the returns from your text messaging campaigns, strengthen customer relations, and drive more engagement. 

The key to drive success is understanding your customer base because your strategies will revolve around how your customers react and respond to you. If you take the time to analyze them, your business will surely flourish.

Looking to power your business with SMS, contact Semaphore today!

Alex built Semaphore’s tech backbone and keeps it running smoothly. With deep experience in tech: Over 20 years in Web Development, IT and Infrastructure; 10+ years management experience in technology; and an expert in enterprise application architecture, development and tech processes, Alex is an old-hat in bridging the gap between geeks and suits as well as applying tech to real-world business problems. Connect with Alex on LinkedIn.

SMS Marketing vs Mobile Marketing (What’s the Difference?)


In recent years, more and more people have been using mobile devices for their daily activities. Mobile devices don’t exclusively just mean phones, but also relate to tablets, and even watches. The strong adoption and overall reliance on smartphones pose an opportunity for marketing companies to adapt and improve the way they do businesses. 

This also meant that marketing firms had to acknowledge that marketing on mobile devices has turned into an effective strategy. As such, they needed to make their content and marketing strategies friendly to general phone users. While many have since adjusted to meet the shift in platform demand in the industry, others may still be left in the dark. 

The purpose of this post is to provide you, the reader, with two types of digital marketing geared toward mobile phones and similar devices, what they are, and how they are different from one another. 

What is SMS Marketing?

The Benefits of Email and SMS Marketing Combined – KitschyImage Source: kitschy.ca

Short message service (SMS) marketing makes use of phones and sends text messages with the purpose of delivering marketing or promotional content to potential customers. Usually, these messages can include info on hot deals, new items, or special sales and discounts. 

SMS marketing operates the same as traditional email marketing, with the biggest differences being the platform it’s being delivered on and the length of the message. SMS messages are short, easy to read, and straight to the point. Even so, a good campaign doesn’t compromise the marketability and selling points of the item being marketed. 

What are the Benefits of SMS Marketing?


  • It provides an immediate channel

One of the reasons why SMS marketing is an effective promotional tool is due to the channel it immediately has access to. Because most people always have their phones at arm’s reach, it’s virtually impossible for them not to read through your message. 

As a matter of fact, within 15 minutes of initial delivery, there is a high read rate of 97%. Additionally, almost half of the SMS campaigns being distributed receive a positive return on investments, with that statistic increasing further when in tandem with email and social media marketing strategies. 

  • It takes advantage of a large audience pool

With SMS marketing, although the effort required may not be as significant as with other content channels, it remains an effective tool for businesses since it taps into a comprehensively wide pool of mobile users.

Because of this vast pool of potential, your business can almost guarantee that an SMS marketing campaign will reach its intended audience. Even if the average turnover per conversion may not be as big, another consolation is more people become aware of your brand and the products or services being sold.

  • It’s generally more cost-effective than other marketing tactics and strategies

Compared to other forms of promotional content, SMS marketing has proven to be both effective in generating returns and cost-efficient. With its ability to be both customizable and accessible to anyone with a phone, SMS marketing beats the traditional use of billboards or tarpaulins, which are generally more expensive alternatives. 

Making use of SMS marketing also allows you or other relevant users to gauge the performance of your campaign, and can adjust accordingly, which isn’t the case with other traditional forms of marketing content.

  • You can increase customer engagement

SMS marketing tools allow businesses to connect with potential clients and create meaningful engagements with them as customers. Through this personal connection with clients, your business can keep them updated and informed about what’s happening with your business, what new items they can expect, and if there are any ongoing sales or discounts currently being offered. 

  • You can access data to monitor and learn from

Because opting for SMS marketing lets you track performance and engagement, it can be added value to your business moving forward. This is because leading SMS platforms let you track return on investments, key engagement metrics, and other relevant indicators that reveal consumer patterns and trends. 

When your business has gathered a significant volume of audience data, you can use it to make more informed decisions. Additionally, you can also use these insights to make targeted campaigns that showcase a deeper understanding of your current audience.

When Should I Use SMS Marketing?


  • Retail promotions

SMS marketing can be the preferred mode of promotion when it comes to upcoming events for your business. Because timed store events drive up demand and revenue, text messages which are immediately received by people serve as the perfect way to convey these real-time communications to customers. 

  • Urgent updates

SMS marketing can be used to let your patrons know what happens or has happened to your business in the event of order delivery, as well as store updates to incidents that occur in a branch store. 

  • Appointment reminders

Your business may run on an appointment schedule, so this is one of the times SMS marketing can act as a handy tool for your daily operations. By sending reminders about an appointment made by a client, you can be confident that they will receive the message as soon as possible. 

SMS Marketing Tools

SMS marketing platforms such as Semaphore allow businesses to send SMS messages to customers and manage their campaigns from a single dashboard.

SMS automation tools like Zapier and can be used to automate SMS workflows, such as sending messages triggered by user behavior or events.

SMS analytics tools such as Semaphore also allow businesses to track and analyze the performance of their SMS campaigns, like by measuring open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.

Mobile landing page builders such as Unbounce can be used to create mobile-optimized landing pages that are designed to convert SMS traffic into leads or sales.

SMS survey tools like SurveyMonkey and Qualtrics allow businesses to gather customer feedback and insights via SMS, helping them to improve their product or service offerings.

SMS Marketing Tips

  • Keep your SMS messages short, concise, and relevant to the recipient.
  • Always obtain express consent from customers before sending SMS messages.
  • Use automation and personalization to tailor your SMS messages to specific customer segments.
  • Include clear calls to action (CTAs) that encourage customers to take action, such as redeeming an offer or visiting your website.
  • Track and analyze your SMS campaign performance to optimize your strategy, such as by measuring open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates.

What is Mobile Marketing?

Image Source: businessofapps.com

Whereas SMS marketing thrives almost exclusively through text messaging across compatible devices, mobile marketing operates on a wider scope and range of devices. Aside from smartphones and tablets, mobile marketing has also recently started extending to other devices without SMS capabilities, like smartwatches. 

Another difference mobile marketing has over SMS marketing is the former’s capability to use content marketing tools to send ads to audiences. These tools typically range from SMS to social media or mobile apps that help your business market your product or service. 

Because this marketing strategy covers a broader scope of channels, different types exist depending on the platform and scope. 

  • Video ads

Most mobile phones allow for videos to be viewed in-app, so your business can promote your products or services through these video-enabled applications like YouTube. 

  • Mobile apps

One of the biggest culprits for people using their phones too much is the applications installed on the phone. An estimated 89% of phone time is spent on apps. Because these apps receive high, long-term engagement, your campaigns are seen by more people, increasing brand awareness over time. 

  • In-game mobile

Your business can also make use of mobile games as a location for ads and other marketing content. Because so many popular games exist, you won’t find a shortage of places to buy ad space. 

  • Location-based

Usually best if you’re a restaurant or retail store, location-based ads pop up if someone is nearby your physical address. This is meant to entice them to stop by since the venue is near to where they are. 

  • Mobile search ads

These utilize search engines that offer users ads compatible with mobile devices, meaning these are the promoted things you find when you browse through search engines, like Google or Yahoo.

What are the Benefits of Mobile Marketing?


  • Wider audience reach potential

Billions of people globally own a smartphone, making it easy for your business to reach a more diverse set of audiences. Along with the platform also come instruments and online tools that can help you distinguish different demographics, like age, gender, and location.

Through these tools, you can not only have bigger access to clients, but you can also segment them accordingly and target the ones you’d like to focus on. 

  • It is immediate and accessible

Like its SMS counterpart, mobile marketing is quick and fast to execute. Because people are on their phones for a significant portion of their day, your campaign will likely get immediate engagement upon launch. This level of accessibility lets your business reach audiences anytime and anywhere. 

  • It’s versatile with multiple marketing channels

To add to an already large pool of potential clients, mobile marketing also lets your business have a wider reach in terms of platforms and channels, making for an even wider reach. It also helps that most of web traffic occurs on mobile phones, at almost 60% as of 2022. 

Platforms and tools like mobile websites, mobile-friendly applications, and in-app mobile marketing can significantly fast-track your company’s journey to brand awareness and drive growth at a much faster pace.

  • It’s cost-effective

Like SMS marketing, mobile marketing benefits from being more affordable compared to other marketing strategies, namely traditional marketing strategies or those catered for desktop viewing. In fact, mobile marketing clicks cost 24% less than clicks from desktop equivalents. 

While being cost-effective is a plus for any scale of business, marketing has become much more accessible for small to medium-sized businesses, or any company on a budget. 

  • Results are trackable

Another benefit mobile marketing shares with SMS marketing is the ability for you to track the performance of each post or campaign. This means you’ll be able to monitor campaign performance live and make adjustments when needed. You can also use the more accurate and relevant data to improve future initiatives and strategies.  

When Should I Use Mobile Marketing?

Because there is an overlap between mobile marketing and SMS marketing, a lot of the examples used generally for SMS marketing can also be applied to mobile marketing. 

Despite the similarities shared by the two, your business should opt for mobile marketing strategies if you want to widen your scope to platforms that aren’t exclusive to SMS. To an extent, mobile marketing takes advantage of the potential pool of clients more than SMS marketing does, since there are more people being targeted due to more channels being available. 

Mobile Marketing Tools

Mobile advertising platforms such as Google Ads and Facebook Ads allow businesses to create and run mobile ads targeted to specific audiences.

Mobile app analytics tools like Google Analytics enable businesses to track and analyze user behavior within their mobile apps.

Mobile push notification tools such as OneSignal allow businesses to send push notifications to users and manage their campaigns from a single dashboard.

Mobile wallet marketing platforms such as Apple Wallet and Google Pay Passes enable businesses to create digital passes and coupons that users can save and redeem on their mobile devices.

QR code generators such as QR Code Generator allow businesses to create and track QR codes, which can be used to promote products or events.

Mobile Marketing Tips

  • Ensure that your website is mobile-friendly and responsive to provide a seamless experience for mobile users.
  • Use targeted and personalized messaging to engage your audience and provide value to the user experience.
  • Optimize your mobile campaigns for local searches by including location-based keywords, such as city or state.
  • Utilize push notifications to provide timely and relevant information to customers, such as product updates or promotions.
  • Track and analyze your mobile campaign performance to optimize your strategy, such as by measuring engagement rates, conversion rates, and user behavior.

Message Has Been Sent!

While both SMS and mobile marketing share a good amount of similarities, its differences lie in their niche and specifications in terms of scope and reach. In short, SMS marketing is part of the bigger umbrella that is mobile marketing.  

Keeping up to date with SMS means understanding the impact it can have on your business operations.

For any consultations, concerns, or inquiries about SMS for businesses, contact our experts at Semaphore.

Alex built Semaphore’s tech backbone and keeps it running smoothly. With deep experience in tech: Over 20 years in Web Development, IT and Infrastructure; 10+ years management experience in technology; and an expert in enterprise application architecture, development and tech processes, Alex is an old-hat in bridging the gap between geeks and suits as well as applying tech to real-world business problems. Connect with Alex on LinkedIn.

12 Clear Benefits of SMS for Businesses

12 Clear Benefits of SMS for Businesses - Banner

With the advancement of technology in the Philippines and around the world, it’s no surprise to see brands shifting their marketing strategies towards newer, emerging channels. 

According to HubSpot, 58% of marketers have found experiential marketing – that is, augmented reality marketing – to be effective. Moreover, social media marketing continues to be among the strongest channels that marketers use. But with consumers being 35x more likely to open mobile messages than email, there’s one channel that remains timeless: SMS.

SMS is a communications channel that doesn’t seem to be going away anytime soon. In fact, it’s one of the most effective marketing channels your business can utilize.

Almost everyone in the Philippines has a working mobile phone with SMS capabilities, meaning that your potential audience reach through SMS is vast. But that isn’t all. 

The infographic below will highlight 12 business SMS benefits and why you should consider including this channel in your next marketing strategies. 


12 Clear Benefits of SMS for Businesses - Infographic

Understanding the Benefits and Advantages of SMS for Businesses


  • Your message has a high chance of being read 

It doesn’t take much research to understand that people are constantly on their phones. It’s been found that Filipinos between the ages of 16 and 64 spend an average of five hours and forty-seven minutes on their phones daily. That means that if someone started using their phone after waking up at 7 AM, the only time they would put it down would be after lunch.

With the amount of time the average Filipino spends on their phone, it’s no surprise to see that SMS receives a 97% read rate. Moreover, it’s forecasted that, out of a population of over 113 million, almost  Filipinos will have smartphones in 2023, giving you the chance to reach a wide audience through your SMS marketing campaigns. 


  • SMS campaigns are budget-friendly

Effectively promoting your business on social media or getting the first search ranking on Google’s search engine results page tends to be an expensive and tedious process. 

Companies typically dedicate $500 – $50,000 per month to their digital marketing efforts. It can be challenging to break through the noise if you don’t have to budget for it. But SMS won’t cost you nearly as much.

With Semaphore, for instance, a 160-byte SMS costs one credit, or P0.50 (exclusive of VAT). So, if you wanted to send an SMS to 1000 people, it would cost only P500 or less than $10 (USD). 

A key advantage of SMS marketing in this case is that you can increase your reach and stretch your budget further.


  • SMS is a more personal channel than others

With the greater use of digital services, the personalization of messages is becoming non-negotiable. According to McKinsey, 71% of consumers expect companies to provide them with personalized experiences – and 76% negatively react when it doesn’t occur. 

Since SMS is one of the few types of marketing where you can reach your customers directly, you’re better able to personalize your messages. With the help of services such as Semaphore, you can customize your SMS even further by easily including each sender’s name instead of a general greeting. 


  • There are few barriers to delivery

One of the challenges you’ll need to overcome with email marketing is avoiding automatic filters. Gmail, for instance, notoriously has a Promotions tab where 93% of email campaigns are filtered to. This was a feature to help declutter the user’s inbox. 

Since most promotional emails are filtered to a hidden tab, only 19.2% are eventually read. 

On the other hand, the advantage of SMS marketing is that it allows you to reach a typically unfiltered space: the user’s SMS inbox. This is why your messages are more likely to get opened than if they were emails. 


  • SMS campaigns are flexible

There are two types of messages you can send out in your SMS campaign: promotional and transactional.

Promotional messages are mainly about promoting products with a specific call-to-action, whether using a coupon or offering discounts. Messages with offers have been found to have over a 9% higher click-through rate than other channels. 

On the other hand, transactional messages are geared more towards sending announcements and additional important information to your customer. This includes any policy changes your business has, tracking information on a package your customer ordered, or a one-time pin (OTP) they need to use to log in to their account. 


  • SMS campaigns are relatively simple to set up

SMS campaigns aren’t as complicated as social media or email marketing campaigns. For instance, you won’t have to worry about designing visual collateral to go along with your marketing copy. 

Instead, all it takes is for you to compose a 160-character message. Additionally, it can be made much easier with services such as Semaphore‘s, which allows you to send SMS messages in bulk using templates, avoiding the need to rewrite each message repeatedly. 


  • You have access to valuable metrics

Another clear advantage when sending SMS or text messages in bulk through software such is that you can easily track your SMS campaigns with metrics such as open, click, and response rates. 

Since you can interact with customers directly, you also have access to a message history to further help you gather valuable insights and track responses to know how to improve your business and products.


  • Allows customers to opt-in or out simply

Signing up for an SMS campaign is a straightforward process for your customers. All they would need to do is text a specific number with a text code to opt-in automatically. This simplicity allows you to grow your contact database much faster as well as increase customer satisfaction.


  • Customers have a higher chance of replying

When compared to emails, SMS recipients are 134% more likely to respond. This is encouraging for you as a business, especially because 60% of consumers want to respond to the messages they receive. 

Responding directly to your customers also helps you build longer-term relationships with them, nurturing them to make a purchase and helping them become advocates for your business. 


  • You face limited competition

An effective way to beat the competition is to avoid it. 61% of marketers aren’t taking advantage of SMS marketing, which bodes well for you if you are. 

Instead of devising ways to differentiate yourself in a sea of emails or shell out thousands to compete against other social media posts, you can reach customers directly through their SMS inbox. With little competition, you can more easily stand out to your customers. 


  • You can expect a high ROI

With how cost-effective SMS campaigns are, it’s no surprise that you can expect a high return on investment when you use them. It’s been found that CTAs of SMS are acted on by 33% of recipients, with 47% of them going on to make a purchase. 

Moreover, marketers can expect an up to 500% return on their investments using a text marketing campaign. You can then funnel the savings from SMS marketing towards other initiatives such as growing your business or improving your products. 


  • SMS is ideal for time-sensitive information

SMS is an ideal channel for limited-time offers, and time-sensitive information since deploying campaigns happens almost instantly. An example of time-sensitive promotional messages you could send could be about a flash sale you have that ends within the day.

Additionally, a transactional SMS you could send is a message allowing customers to track their order on their way to them. 

SMS is advantageous because they’re short, simple, and important messages you can easily send to your customers at any time, regardless of whether or not they’re connected to the internet. 


Take Your Marketing Further with SMS

SMS is far from extinct. Businesses not incorporating SMS into their marketing campaigns are missing out on favorable upsides that would be difficult to achieve via other channels. 

The advantages of SMS, including the high chance of your messages being read paired with the low relative cost, can yield a high return on investment for your business. Additionally, it’s simple to set up and a convenient channel to start conversations with your customers and gain insights. 

It’s about time to seriously consider incorporating SMS into your marketing campaign!

If you’re looking to power your business with SMS, contact Semaphore for best-in-class business SMS solutions.


Alex built Semaphore’s tech backbone and keeps it running smoothly. With deep experience in tech: Over 20 years in Web Development, IT and Infrastructure; 10+ years management experience in technology; and an expert in enterprise application architecture, development and tech processes, Alex is an old-hat in bridging the gap between geeks and suits as well as applying tech to real-world business problems. Connect with Alex on LinkedIn.