Today, your smartphone has more computer power than the whole of NASA had when they guided and monitored spacecrafts to the moon in 1969.
By 2019, mobile advertising is expected to represent 72% of all U.S. digital ad spending.
As it stands today, 68% of companies have integrated mobile marketing into their overall marketing strategy.
We rely on our mobile phones for a multitude of tasks. They are our video cameras, calendars, alarm clocks, gaming machines, sources of news, music players, and occasionally things such as phone calls and text messages too!
As brands and businesses start to seriously consider and invest in mobile marketing and technology, they also need to adapt to the technology and components that make SMS marketing efficient, cost effective and measurable.
That’s where mobile keywords come into play.
A mobile keyword is a single word that can contain letters or numbers and is picked by a business as the word to be sent via text message to a short phone number called a "short code". The purpose being that the person sending the keyword is volunteering to join a text messaging list or enters into an interactive SMS campaign.
When was the last time you looked at a product and saw something along the lines of ‘Txt JoinNow to 76543’ now to enter our competition for $1000’
This is just a relatively straightforward example of how mobile keywords and shortcodes are being used in everyday marketing by some businesses. In the above example, ‘JoinNow’ is the keyword, and ‘76543’ is the shortcode.
By texting that specific keywords to the short code advertised, a consumer is opting into a competition or a service.
The beauty of mobile keywords and shortcodes is that they give consumers the option to voluntarily share their details and opt into your marketing database. A clever marketer will offer exclusive offers, updates, monetary incentives, VIP deals, and a myriad of other bespoke privileges to those that opt into their mobile marketing database.
Pairing a keyword to a short code allows your customers to communicate directly with your company. Placing your keyword in front of a message they text to your shared short code identifies them to a SMS marketing provider, so the provider can route the message to your Inbox. For example, if you wanted to entice customers to join your store’s monthly sale notification list, you could add a Call To Action to your signage such as, "Text Jewelry to 313131 to receive monthly sale alerts before anyone else!".
How are mobile keywords used?
Although mobile keywords are often used to promote a specific discount or competition, they can also be used to promote new products, flash sales, or simply as an option to subscribe to a company's news updates.
Some customers feel such an affiliation with a brand or a company that they want to receive updates from them frequently, and what better way to do this than from the comfort of their smartphone.
Customers feel privileged to feel part of an elite set of brand affiliates that receive updates and offers before the general public do. This type of affiliation enhances brand loyalty and also builds close relationships between brands and consumers.
Examples of keywords and how they are used in marketing campaigns
As you can see, keywords are an incredibly powerful tool when it comes to constructing and disseminating a successful mobile marketing campaign. The best way to understand how keywords can be used for different purposes is to look at some examples. Below are some hypothetical examples of how different keywords can be used for different purposes by any business,
VIPSMS– This keyword could be send to a shortcode that your SMS marketing provider creates exclusively for your business. By texting VIPSMS to your shortcode, customers are opting in to receive your latest offers, news and exclusives direct to their smartphones as soon as you have updates available for them. These updates can be pre-programmed and automated, letting your SMS marketing campaigns run themselves.
Always give your customers the option to opt back out. This would normally be encouraged by a simple message such as ‘Txt Stop VIPSMS to this number to end’
2FOR1 – This is an example of the power of mobile couponing. When you encourage your customers to text in to receive a coupon, you also collect their phone number, which you can use for future marketing campaigns (with permission) – ‘Thx for joining our VIP text club! Show this to your server and get 2-4-1 appetizers all night. Reply STOP 2FOR1 to end.’
SHOES – This is an example of a marketing alerts campaign. Build loyalty by letting interested customers know about specials before everyone else – ‘Welcome to Shoe Junkie’s preferred customer program. We'll send you exclusive invites to amazing sneaker launches and you can to attend before the general public! Reply STOP SHOES to end.’
Rules when choosing keywords
There area few golden rules to follow when you choose the keywords that you will be using for your latest mobile marketing campaign!
Keep it short – Too long of an SMS keyword and potential subscribers will avoid your campaign, shorter keywords are memorable and easier to use!
Avoid special characters – It’s just an added inconvenience for customers to tab from letters to numbers/symbols on any mobile phone.
Make it memorable – Sometimes potential subscribers only are able to give an SMS keyword a few glances, make sure it sticks in their head when they look down at their mobile phone.
Avoid using multiple words – Spacing can cause a lot of confusion when it comes to mobile marketing keywords. Therefore stick with single words. For instance… If your keyword is SHOESALE, keep it clearly printed as one word on all your marketing material. That way, customers won’t type it as two words and slip through the net for your marketing campaign.
Straightxt has a range of features and tools to make your SMS marketing campaigns professional and successful.