It’s mobile marketing month here at Insivia and one of the questions we always get from out clients is whether or not our clients should be capturing mobile phone numbers from their customers to use in future forms of SMS marketing. A lot of the times it’s thought of being too intrusive but I’m here to tell you otherwise. For a lot of businesses collecting mobile phone numbers is a great opportunity for you. With SMS messaging over 95% of all SMS text messages that are sent are opened by the end user. As opposed to email where it’s about 6-15% of those emails are read. Mobile marketing and text message marketing is a great opportunity to directly interact with your customer. One of the best ways to do it is to include an opt-in for a mobile phone number on your opt in forms and your other marketing materials giving your customers the ability to give you their phone number to receive SMS interactions from your business. One of the things that I would not recommend is making this a mandatory requirement for people to give you their cell phone number but leave it to them as an option. If somebody wants to receive mobile messages from you, you want to give them an opportunity because the success rate is so high when working with SMS and direct message marketing.

Trulia reduces the time it takes to respond to online leads. The odds of successfully contacting an online lead are 100 times higher if the lead hears from an agent within five minutes of submitting an online form. With programmable voice and SMS, real estate agents are instantly connected on a call with a new lead, or sent an SMS with lead details.

For a more cost-effective solution, you can register a keyword on a shared short code, which means you will be assigned a unique SMS keyword but you will share the short code with other businesses. These short codes are great for competitions or lead generation for example, where customers can SMS your keyword and their details to the shared number to enter or request a quote or more information about your products and services.
First, you collect the opt-in, which 9 times out of 10 will be a 'cold lead', ie., someone (NOT) familiar with you or what you represent. So instead of immediately going into full-on presentation mode, which isn't good for you or your prospect, you create a buffer where the prospect can learn more about YOU in a safe space. The reason this is important nowadays is because your prospect is more interested in you, your story and why you choose to align with your primary program, even more so than his or hers interest in the biz opp itself.
Many MGAs have found SMS to be the business partner to help them succeed. We offer full back-office support, including contracting, certification, supplies and new business status. Our credibility with carriers means you can turn to us to help resolve problems with clients and/or commissions. We do not recruit your agents nor use your client records for anything other than to support your efforts.
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Short codes offer very similar features to a dedicated virtual number, but are short mobile numbers that are usually 5-6 digits. Their length and availability depend on each country. These are usually more expensive and are commonly used by enterprises and governmental organisations. For mass messaging, short codes are preferred over a dedicated virtual number because of their higher throughput, and are great for time-sensitive campaigns and emergencies.[11]
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Mobile marketing approaches through SMS has expanded rapidly in Europe and Asia as a new channel to reach the consumer. SMS initially received negative media coverage in many parts of Europe for being a new form of spam as some advertisers purchased lists and sent unsolicited content to consumer's phones; however, as guidelines are put in place by the mobile operators, SMS has become the most popular branch of the Mobile Marketing industry with several 100 million advertising SMS sent out every month in Europe alone. This is thanks impart to SMS messages being hardware agnostic—they can be delivered to practically any mobile phone and accessed without a Wi-Fi or mobile data connection. This is important to note since there are over 5 billion unique mobile phone subscribers worldwide in 2017, which is about 66% of the world population.[7]
While many agencies spend thousands of dollars launching high-tech, multi-channel campaigns, they sometimes lose sight that less can be more -- and often, the perfect solution is resting right in the palm of your hands. SMS text messaging is a simple but powerful communications channel, reaching customers right where they are and consequently boasting a staggering 99% open rate. And MMS (multimedia messaging) enables sending pictures, video, GIFs and audio, thereby further enhancing messaging. SMS lead generation is equally effective. Think about it -- when was the last time you went anywhere without your cell phone, or failed to notice a text message that you had received? The level of engagement with SMS text messaging is unparalleled -- about 90% of text messages are opened and read within only three minutes of receipt. For these reasons and more, text messaging is quickly becoming the communications method of choice for both business and pleasure. If you aren’t recommending SMS messaging as a communications and lead generation strategy, or using it on behalf of your clients, now is the time to start!
Businesses have been collecting customer information for years by offering a birthday freebie, i.e. a free product or service on your birthday. Customers are more likely to trust you with their phone number if they get some sort of reward in return. You can also send them one-month, six-month, or one-year “anniversary” bonuses based on their sign-up date.
If your open rate is low, your goal will be to start improving that. If there are multiple parts of your message that you would like to improve, start with identifying the most important one. If, for example, your open rate and click-through-rate of the message’s contents are low, it would be better to first work on the open rate. After all, no one is going to see your improved content if no one is opening it in the first place. So, determine your goal and let that direct your focus towards the thing that needs improvement most.  
As the name implies, shared virtual numbers are shared by many different senders. They’re usually free, but they can’t receive SMS replies, and the number changes from time to time without notice or consent. Senders may have different shared virtual numbers on different days, which may make it confusing or untrustworthy for recipients depending on the context. For example, shared virtual numbers may be suitable for 2 factor authentication text messages, as recipients are often expecting these text messages, which are often triggered by actions that the recipients make. But for text messages that the recipient isn’t expecting, like a sales promotion, a dedicated virtual number may be preferred.
Mobile advertising has become more and more popular. However, some mobile advertising is sent without a required permission from the consumer causing privacy violations. It should be understood that irrespective of how well advertising messages are designed and how many additional possibilities they provide, if consumers do not have confidence that their privacy will be protected, this will hinder their widespread deployment.[40] But if the messages originate from a source where the user is enrolled in a relationship/loyalty program, privacy is not considered violated and even interruptions can generate goodwill.[41]
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