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SMS for B2B: How can you use SMS marketing to improve B2B sales?

B2B SMS marketing is one of the powerful tools leveraged to reach customers. It can help you nurture leads, raise brand awareness, and sell your products.

If you look at the data, around 83.72% of the world’s population owns smartphones. That’s roughly 6.65 billion people you could reach through SMS. 

Not only that. Buyers are more likely to open offer messages compared to other types. The click-through rate is almost 10% higher compared to messages informing them of new products, confirmation, and feedback. 

All is well and good, but the raw data isn’t what makes a campaign successful. Whenever an SMS marketing campaign fails, it’s common for marketers to feel like they’ve hit a brick wall. There are many ways in which your SMS campaigns can go awry — from a lack of permission and ambiguous call to actions to poor visuals and bad timing.

In this guide, the BSG team walks you through the steps of launching successful SMS campaigns for better conversions.

If you’d rather skip the gist and jump right into creating an SMS campaign, here’s a mass texting service to use. But if you’d like to learn more about B2B SMS marketing, you’re welcome to stick around. 

Let’s get right into it.

What is B2B SMS marketing? 

So, what does B2B mean in texting? 

B2B SMS marketing involves interactions between a company and its trading partners through text messaging. Essentially, mass texting for B2B offers a means to present your products to other businesses. 

Between 2015 and 2017, the adoption of SMS marketing as a strategy in B2B campaigns increased by nearly 200%. B2B marketers can harness the features of SMS marketing to provide informational value, sell helpful tools for productivity and maintain relationships with clients.

How does B2B SMS marketing work in 2022?

It’s one thing to have a successful SMS campaign up and running; it’s quite another to comprehend how everything fits together. Here are a few examples of how SMS marketing works:

  1. Automation

For as long as there has been technology, people have desired some level of automation. Recent trends in 2022 show that even B2B SMS marketing has become mostly automated and does not require much human intervention.

In essence, you can easily automate sending highly personalized text messages to customers while keeping tabs on their responses. The cherry on top is that automation tools help in making business promotion more effective and in seamlessly setting up administrative tasks. This could be scheduling appointments, confirming orders, answering FAQs, and sending reminders.

  1. On cloud

Companies aren’t the only ones migrating to the cloud; SMS marketing is as well. You can expect more cloud-based text marketing tools in 2022. An example of this would be the use of a reseller SMS marketing service by B2Bs to maintain contact with leads.

  1. Omnichannel

It’s common for marketers to believe that SMS marketing has no place in their “omnichannel playbook”.

Wrong! Many B2Bs are already incorporating SMS into their multichannel strategies. You may be surprised to learn that SMS-enabled omnichannel marketing campaigns are 50% more likely to result in a conversion. 

Assuming you’ve sent an SMS message to a potential customer and they’ve responded positively. The same potential customer contacts you once again, this time via social media or an instant messaging app. 

Simply put, omnichannel messaging allows your business users to view both interactions as part of a single ongoing conversation. Using B2B sms marketing strategies across omnichannel, your internal team can respond with pertinent questions or information. 

Useful B2B text messaging statistics 

Your B2B messages should be informed by the market trends. Take a look at some interesting numbers below.

  • Both businesses and customers love sms

It’s estimated that 80% of all business communications are conducted via SMS due to its ease of use, lack of intrusion, and lightning-fast delivery.

In 2020, 48.7 million people will have opted to use business text messaging services, making it one of the fastest-growing advertising mediums.

  • Customers want loyalties, but innovative SMS solutions are required

When asked how they would like to receive brand loyalty updates, nearly half (48%) said via text message. This is supported by recent research showing that a majority of consumers (52%) would rather receive promotional texts.

  • Sms is a great way to break the ice

An SMS is a great way to start a conversation with a potential customer or warm up a cold lead. Over half of all customers say they’d rather get in touch with a company via text message than by phone. In addition, consumers in the United States are 5 times more likely to send and receive text messages than phone calls.

What do you need to get started with B2B marketing?

You need three basic things to get started with B2B marketing:

  • Messaging tool: SMS marketing software allows you to create and track multiple campaigns. Most of them are simple to use and have built-in capabilities that can help with marketing campaigns. For example, with two-way SMS, your customers can respond to text messages and you can engage them in real-time. Another strong feature is the 2-factor API, which is used to secure messages. In all, a messaging tool can assist in boosting your return on investment and enhances the user experience.
  • A contact database: A contact database stores the contact information of your customers, such as their names and email addresses. Building a database takes time and never really ends. But you should already before launching an SMS campaign. Click here to learn how to build a bulk SMS database.
  • The CRM tool: Customer Relationship Management tools help you put all the information you need about your contacts in one place. This means better contact management, detailed analytic reports, quick feedback, and a better customer experience.

How to launch a successful B2B SMS marketing campaign?

For a B2B SMS marketing campaign to be successful, you need more than just the tools we’ve already talked about. There must be a full set of steps taken. We’ve put together some simple tips and best practices that should help.

Tip #1. Have a clear opt-in process

Text messaging is a way to market that requires permission, unlike social media. Sending B2B messages to random businesses to tell them about your business is the most annoying thing you can do. Even if they are already your customers, they should be able to choose whether or not to sign up for your text message services. You can send a simple first text message asking if they want to sign up for your SMS marketing services. If they say something bad or don’t answer at all, you should stop texting them.

Tip #2. Introduce your company

Show off your business and yourself in a professional way by putting your name, location, and registration number front and center. Adopt a brief approach that shows the most important things about your company and brand and explains why yours is the best. Show them why they should trust you.

Tip #3. Use a simple, time-bound CTA 

Your business marketing text messages should include a call to action and a deadline to get your leads to get in touch with you as soon as possible.Add the company name or other information about the recipient.

Tip #4. Personalize the messages 

Even the largest businesses are run by people, and everyone likes to be treated as a unique individual. At their core, B2B businesses also sell to people. 

In fact, these are the kinds of customers who are less likely to buy things on a whim or because of how they feel. To move them down the sales funnel, you need to talk to them in a more personal and conversational way. When you say their name in your message, you make a big impression.

Tip #5. Be polite and friendly

Use a tone that makes conversations easy. Ask questions and talk naturally, but stick to an official language. If you sound too friendly, it might take away from how serious your value propositions are.

Tip #6. Deliver immediate value

Value is what drives business. By giving something of value in your short B2B messages, you can convince people that you have more to offer if they do business with you. Doesn’t that sum up the goal of any good marketing campaign?

Tip #7. The timing is golden!

Effective SMS marketing messages should be sent between 9:00 am and 5:00 pm, but never after 9:00 pm. The goal is to catch a potential customers when they are working, not when they are tired. If you send SMS business-to-business marketing at the wrong time, potential customers will find it annoying.

Tip #8. Check how often you send messages 

As a general rule, you shouldn’t send more than once a week. There may be some exceptions, but you should never send more than once a day. If you do, you might start to annoy or bore your leads.

Tip #9. Build an sms marketing list for your campaign

Building an SMS marketing list isn’t just about getting people to enter their phone numbers into a form. It’s about building trust through clear communication and then giving your customers a reason to subscribe.

So, how do you create the right SMS marketing list for your B2B campaign?

  • Talk to your current clients: Tell your customers that they can reach you more quickly and easily through SMS. Give them a keyword and a shortcode, and tell them to sign up right away.
  • Conduct market research: Make a list of companies that might be interested in doing business with you and send them business cards. This way you can detail how they can subscribe to get your best services and deals.
  • Get recommendations and referrals from existing customers: Your customers are the bridge between you and other businesses that might need your offerings. First, make sure your customers are happy with your service. Then, make a template that lets them share their experience with your business. You can give discounts or freebies in exchange for recommendations.
  • Make a comprehensive website form: You can build a list by having people fill out forms on your website in exchange for something, like a webinar or some kind of training. You can also use the website to tell people about your subscription. When you do these things, you must make it clear to the user that by giving you their phone number, they agree to be contacted by text message. These opt-in rules are crucial parts of phone marketing in B2B that you must follow to stay out of trouble with the law
  • Convert your email marketing list: By giving them a keyword and shortcode, you can turn your email list into an SMS marketing list. Your email subscribers already do business with you in some way, so a good number of them won’t think twice about signing up for direct text message services.
  • Use social media: You can run awareness campaigns on your social media pages and tell your followers to sign up for your SMS marketing list in the same way you get people to sign up for your email list. Also, targeted ads on social media can help customers who are interested in you find you and get in touch with you.

What types of messages can you send? 

Mobile marketing in B2B isn’t all about making a buck. In reality, most consumers are put off by overtly promotional offers but are more likely to make a purchase if they perceive value. 

Other than promotions, you can also send business marketing text messages that provide some sort of value, initiate a conversation, or offer information. This can be in the form of:

  • Announcements: You can let your leads know about new service offers, downtime, price changes, and more by sending them an SMS. These texts can be sent in bulk, and responses can be taken care of automatically.
  • Appointments: B2B messages can be used to set up business appointments.
  • Reminders: People in the business world tend to keep a hectic schedule. So, the best way to ensure they don’t forget about your offers is to send them gentle SMS reminders.
  • Invitations: You can use text messages to invite people to webinars, seminars, training workshops, auctions, and other events.
  • Polls and surveys: Sending survey questions via SMS makes it more likely and faster that people will answer. It also keeps the conversation going and makes customers feel better about the brand. Many SMS marketing platforms have built-in polling and survey tools that let customers give feedback with a single text message.
  • Educational content: Remember that your potential customers are other businesses. Hence, provide them with useful content that speaks to both your and their interests.

Conclusion

Sms B2B marketing is an effective way to boost sales. But to get the most out of your campaigns, you need to know a lot about how they work. The tips above arm you in the best ways possible. If you need further help running a successful SMS marketing campaign, we’re just a click away. Better yet, read this helpful guide for more ways to use promotional SMS to improve your business.

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