Running a business today is certainly not as simple as it used to be in the” pre “social media and mobile technology era. Besides the usual components of setting up shop, ensuring supply of goods or services, hiring the right people, prospecting customers and finally making a sale, businesses must also engage clients via their website, marketing campaigns and social media platforms. To this effect, CRM or Client Relationship Management has become an imperative business solution for tracking and managing client interactions across channels. Simply put, this is what an effective CRM achieves: CRM = Better Customer Profiling = Targeted Client Campaigns =Differential Client Experience = Higher Sales!
Courtesy cloud technology, more and more small businesses today are able to implement CRM systems and develop marketing strategies basis gathered customer intelligence. However, the conundrum most small business owners face is choosing a marketing method that is both effective and affordable.
Mobile Texts: The most cost effective CRM tool for small businesses
SMS, or mobile text is fast becoming a popular way for communicating with clients and here’s why.
Firstly, almost everyone has a mobile phone; some estimates put the number of smart phones sold each year as higher than the number of PC’s sold. Not to mention that smart phones are being used as comprehensive business communication devices. This means that customers can be reached on their phones almost all through the day.
Secondly, SMS text campaigns are cheaper compared to print and televised ad campaigns. And venturing into a social media marketing campaign can be rather daunting, especially for smaller businesses who may lack the necessary manpower, resources or technical expertise.
Thirdly, text marketing messages are sent to customers who have agreed to receive communication from the specific business, making it the most effective way to reach the target audience. It is estimated more than 90 percent of campaign text messages are read by recipients and have a response rate that is much higher than traditional media.
With SMS marketing businesses can offer mobile coupons for redemption, send appointment reminders as well as market products and services (think SMS sweepstakes).
Looking to initiate an SMS Campaign? Here are some Free Trial Options!
To address concerns of prospective first time clients on the effectiveness of mobile text campaigns, several SMS marketing companies offer a free trial period of about a month. If you are a small business owner who has been contemplating a marketing SMS campaign for a while, here are some companies that offer a free trial account.
EzTexting is a SMS marketing specialist that has handled campaigns for over 50000 companies, which includes the likes of Pepsi and Domino’s Pizza. You can generate an SMS campaign on their website via a free trial account (no credit card details needed). Their paid packages vary from $29 for 200 messages to $149 for 6600 messages a month, with free incoming messages. The company also supports Canadian cell phone carriers. Visit their website to read some of the company’s success stories.
SnapGiant is a social and mobile marketing provider that offers a 30 day trial of 100 messages. Its pricing varies from $24 for 500 messages to about $175 for 5000 messages a month, with a roll over message of credits.
GreenRope with its trademarked business operating solution has also introduced SMS marketing services as part of its overall CRM offering. Besides the free trial offer, it is priced competitively at $99 for 1000 contacts to $169 for 7500 contacts per month.
SimpleTextin is an SMS marketing company which offers 50 free messages for the first trial month. It has the option of paying for a specific number of messages to unlimited subscribers or sending unlimited messages to a specific number of subscribers.
A 2012 empirical study by the Mobile Marketing Association (MMA) concluded that businesses should spend at least 7 percent of their marketing budget on mobile campaigns. Whether yours is a business that deals in real estate, travel and tourism, event coordination or is a non-profit organization or a grocery /department store, mobile text campaigns offer an affordable, simple and effective platform for reaching out to existing and potential customers.