How to run SMS Marketing Campaign? (Ideas + Examples + Guidelines)

· 8 min read
How to run SMS Marketing Campaign? (Ideas + Examples + Guidelines)

SMS Marketing campaign is used to send offers, discounts, reminders, latest information, etc. Find tips, ideas, guidelines and examples in this guide.

Businesses use SMS (Short Message Service) marketing for the purpose of direct advertising and influencing buyer decisions.

An SMS Marketing campaign involves collecting mobile phone numbers (usually by customer opt-ins) using a keyword sent to a short code, which adds the customer’s number to your messaging platform database.

Once numbers are collected, you can prepare a special promotion or update and send a bulk message to potential customers. That’s how SMS marketing works. It’s as easy as that!

Basically, there are two types of SMS marketing campaigns. Inbound and Outbound.

  • Inbound SMS Marketing campaigns are when you request people to text you. To run this type of campaign, you need a reply number. It could be either a Virtual phone number or a shortcode.
  • Outbound SMS marketing campaigns are when you send messages to an existing list. The communication is only one way with this type of campaign and the recipients have no way to reply.

Pro-tip: Feeling Overwhelmed? Begin with our detailed guide on SMS marketing. Learn the basics, features, benefits, and best Practices.

Why SMS Marketing Campaign?

Because it’s where your customers are. If your consumers watch TV, you’d advertise during their favorite show.

Likewise with radio and print. Well, now your customers are on their mobile devices. Just have a look at these facts.

  • Average user picks up their device 85 times a DAY.
  • 80% of users say their phone is the first thing they check when they wake up.
  • SMS has an open rate of 82%.
  • 70% of mobile searches result in action within an hour.

Now, let’s have a look at these benefits of SMS marketing campaigns:

Immediate Response

SMS marketing campaigns are quick, easy to plan and implement. For example, weather forecast determines a lot of things for a company that sells raincoats.

With a rain forecast, you should ideally plan and run an SMS marketing campaign. You can add a special deal as well to attract more people.

Affordable Niche Marketing

You may have a certain product that a small niche really wants. It might be too expensive to make a TV commercial for that small market.

However, SMS marketing lets you cost-effectively market that product to exactly the people who want it.

No Dependency On the Internet

You don’t need smartphones and the internet to read an SMS. For businesses, this is important, because with SMS marketing campaigns you can target even prospects in rural areas.

You can even effectively integrate it with missed call marketing to get better results.

Affordable Mass Marketing

Reaching thousands of consumers with your text ads is very affordable.

Reward Subscribers, Drive Loyalty

Send a specific promotion to your subscribers that no one else sees, thus rewarding their loyalty and encouraging others to subscribe to your SMS marketing campaigns.

SMS Marketing Key Terms That You Must Know

Before you continue with this SMS marketing guide, there are a few key terms and concepts you’ll need to understand.

Shortcodes: These are special shortened phone numbers to which a text message can be sent.

They are shorter than a 10-digit telephone number and are typically 5 or 6 digits. Shortcodes are a tool your customers can use to engage and interact with your business.

Keyword: A keyword is a custom word that you choose to identify your SMS campaign.

Your customer then texts that keyword into the shortcode number to opt-in or subscribe to your campaign.

Keywords work best when they are short and impactful to your target customers.

SMS Marketing Guidelines

Here are a few sms marketing best practices that you must follow for better engagement and results:

Always Use Opt-in

While gathering mobile numbers for the first time from new customers, let them know you’ll be using text messages to keep in touch. As for your existing list of customers, you can send them SMS as they’ve already opted in when they signed up for your service, product, or account.

Always Include A Clear Opt-out Method

There are plenty of people who prefer email marketing rather than SMS marketing. So, always include a way to opt-out in every SMS message you send.

Never Spam Your Customers

Don’t abuse customer confidentiality by sending them messages when they haven’t opted in.

SMS Campaign Time

Don’t invade your customer’s sleep by sending texts too early in the morning or too late at night. Acceptable texting hours are generally 8 am-8 pm.

Tips For Successful SMS Marketing Campaign

To make the most of your SMS marketing campaign, it is important that you learn how to optimize SMS marketing campaign.

1) Proper Keyword

Keywords are unique terms (which can include letters and/or numbers) that are used for communication between your brand and consumers. This is why it should be aligned with your brand name.

2) Use 160 Characters Wisely

Make sure your message is clear and concise and written in plain language. Avoid any abbreviations, emoticons and/or writing in all caps unless there’s a direct benefit in your doing so.

3) Include Brand Name

Your subscribers can save your sender ID. But they hardly do so. That’s why it’s worth including your brand name within the body of the text.

4) Know Your Audience

Understand your customer demographic information using your lead management system CRM or use Google Analytics or you can even use Facebook Insights Data.

With analyzing access to purchase history and location-based demographics, you can send the right message to the right customers at the right times.

5) Convenience

Make it easy for your clients to buy your latest special. Use SMS text message marketing to clearly say when, where and how your clients can act on your latest text ad.

6) Hyper-focused Customer Targeting

Location-based SMS marketing allows you to narrow in on customers more efficiently than other less-focused marketing strategies.

As a result, your business forms a stronger connection with your customers, as though you are speaking directly to them right where they are.

7) Workaround CTA

Call to action drives your SMS campaign’s purpose.

Instead of writing an SMS ad and then slapping on a generic CTA, finalize your CTA first and then write the SMS ad to fit the CTA.

To help you focus your CTA, think about what you eventually want your contacts to do.

Bonus: Analysing Facebook Insight data is just one part of your marketing strategy. Check out our complete guide of Facebook marketing strategy to make the most out of this platform.

How to Create a Successful SMS Marketing Campaign?

Planning an SMS marketing campaign is pretty much like planning any marketing campaign.

Begin with a clear goal. And the following tips will help you accomplish the desired outcome.

  • Focus On Interaction: Make sure you have established the frequency with which you will be sending out messages and stick to it. Make sure that you are meeting your customer’s expectations.
  • Be Relevant and Timely: Be sure your messages pertain to the campaign. If your campaign is about weather alerts do not send coupons. Always send messages at respectful times of the day and when your customers are likely to respond.
  • Know Your Target: Ask yourself what kind of messages you would want to receive. You know your industry better than anyone. You should think carefully about what call to action should you use in the SMS marketing campaign that would best motivate your customers and potential new customers.
  • Personalize Your Messages: Your customers are not numbers- they are people. So, make use of a lead management system like Teleduce and using custom fields in your campaigns include your customers’ names in each message.

How To Engage Customers With SMS Marketing?

Below are some thoughts and SMS marketing campaign ideas to get you thinking about how to successfully use SMS to better engage with current and potential customers:

1) Offer An Instant Coupon: You can offer an instant discount coupon when customers enroll in your SMS marketing campaign. The program offers immediacy, especially convenient if a customer is enrolling in-store.

2) News Updates: With an SMS marketing campaign, you can also offer store updates. Sales events and specials help customers plan their shopping trips around the best deals. Brand-new information makes your business appear as fresh and forward-moving to your customers.

3) Online and Offline Promotions: Not only you can offer convenient, instant access to online deals via an SMS marketing campaign, but it also offers exclusive access to offline promotions deals.

4) Help Feature: You can also allow customers to text HELP to the same short code number as they subscribed to. If customers are having trouble with the text ads, help is only a few keystrokes away. This extra reassurance is invaluable for obtaining and retaining subscribers.

5) Referrals: Another way of using SMS marketing campaigns is to offer a discount to customers who send you referrals and say ‘thank you’ to the referrals with the same offer!

Here are some SMS marketing campaign examples of popular marketing message types:

Loyalty Programs

Most industries are dependent on consumer loyalty. That’s why it is appropriate to incorporate an SMS campaign into the marketing mix to increase loyalty.

Are you a VIP? Come in today for a w/ . If not, stop in and sign up today! on

Are you a Joe’s Deli VIP? Come in today for a double punch on your card w/ any sandwich. If not, stop in and sign up today! Joe’s Deli on 121st St.

Customer Retention

Customer retention saves you money and increases revenue. Sending specific and targeted messages to them will make your customers feel that you’re paying attention to them and that you care about their satisfaction.

! If , stop by on for .

Summer is here in full force! If your car’s A/C isn’t as cool as it used to be, stop by Joe’s Auto Repair on 121st Street for an $89.95 A/C tune-up.

Enter-To-Win Contest

Sweepstakes or contest using text message marketing is a great way to build awareness about your brand or organization.

Something as simple as in-store signage asking consumers to text your keyword to enter a sweepstake can reap large rewards.

Participants are entered to win a prize and can also join your database for future marketing that will consist of product introductions, news, and special deals. A great sample text would be:


“Text SWASH to 86201 to win a weekend getaway

for a family of 4 at Swash Waterpark Resort!”


The goal with a coupon SMS marketing campaign to drive in-store traffic on the days they need it.

The database can be used for many other types of campaigns, but this is a great incentive to get a customer to join your campaign. Below is an example:

Show this message to the cashier at to get any ! Stop by on . Exp .

Show this message to the cashier at Joe’s Books to get 10% off any single item! Stop by Joe’s Books on 121st Street. Exp 6/12/2012.

Why Choose Teleduce for SMS Marketing?

Now that you understand how SMS marketing can be beneficial to you along with various tips, you are probably wondering how to do SMS marketing in India?

Well, you can run an SMS marketing campaign easily with an integrated sales and marketing platform like Teleduce.

  • This system allows you to set up and save templates that can be used later for automation.
  • Personalization is extremely simple with the use of smart tags that insert the unique information in a given field for each recipient.
  • A large number of messages can be scheduled to go out at any time.
  • Autoresponders can be set based on triggers like someone subscribes to a list, fills in a survey, etc
  • You can also check all the important statistics like the number of SMSes opened, CTA clicked, etc.

Try Teleduce today, Just Sign up, pick out a keyword, and start your SMS marketing campaign!

7 Days Free Trial