The Power of SMS: Enabling a Robust Recovery for Retail

April 29, 2020 Hanna Lee

Businesses around the world are feeling the challenging effects of COVID-19 and are subsequently adapting. Restauranteurs are offering takeout, retailers are providing curbside pickup, and social distancing practices remain enforced.

Yet as these waves of uncertainty are continuously brought upon us, brands are looking to re-engage with their customers by establishing a strong communication channel that allows for quick and efficient exchanges of information. Simultaneously, customers want to be kept in-the-know on critical business updates, such as change in offerings and store re-openings.

This is how mobile marketing can help.

The Power of SMS

The mobile marketing landscape provides a bundle of opportunity for brands to engage with their customer base, and SMS is proving time and time again to be one of the most dependable channels for 1:1 customer communication. Here’s why.

A new study shows that since the start of the pandemic, consumer behavior has seen a major shift over mobile. In fact, 46% of consumers are reportedly using their phones an additional four hours each day with 48% of consumers preferring text message communication over email.

The takeaway?

Regardless of being physically distant from one another, consumers are keeping their mobile devices close. The additional screen time and preference for text message communication means there is clear opportunity for brands to secure SMS as a reliable communications channel. And with a much higher open rate and engagement rate in comparison to email, it’s a no brainer for brands to adopt SMS into their marketing strategy.

Brands are Adapting to a Contactless Norm

Taking steps toward minimizing in-person interactions has become the new norm for brands. With an overwhelming support of existing stay-at-home restrictions, and some people even wishing for stricter ones, it’s clear this contactless trend is here to stay.

Brands looking for guidance on how to translate their brand experience through digital while adapting to contactless solutions can look to our Vibes Re-store offerings that hones in on the power of SMS to:

  • Launch alerts for store hours, curbside pickup, or re-openings
  • Reroute customers to e-commerce and increase digital revenue
  • Fast track mobile database opt-ins
  • Acquire customers through digital storefronts

Using mobile messaging, retailers can acquire these new customers now, drive online revenue and scale their reach in preparation for re-openings.

By allowing text messaging to serve as your brand’s source of truth, consumers can engage with your brand’s content on a more interpersonal level that will keep them informed and instantly updated while also prioritizing customer safety.

Easing the Transition Back to Normalcy

There’s no doubt that the growing uncertainty surrounding our future makes customers and brands alike uneasy. During a time like this, however, SMS is the key for fast, reliable communication.

High level digital programs will be key in the next few months – ensure you have a reliable channel of communication to reach consumers. 

By leveraging text messaging, brands can provide dynamic experiences and get a head start on contactless methods that ease the transition back to normalcy. While the world may feel like it’s at a standstill, actively communicating with your customers gives them more reason to re-engage, or better yet, re-purchase from your brand post pandemic.

About the Author

Hanna Lee

Hanna Lee is a Marketing Intern at Vibes, located in San Francisco. She seeks to discover how marketing trends are brought to life in the digital world while also providing fresh insights that spark explorative and innovative natures in others.

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