Whether you’d like to help your sales team close more deals, turn customers into advocates, remind someone about a meeting, or get greater response rates for surveys, text message automation can help your business. What if I told you that you could automate text messages with no help from a developer, and that with just an hour or two of work you could have a full program humming along?
I’ve spent dozens of hours working on SMS marketing for clients and I’ve learned a lot along the way. I’ve learned the hard ways and the easy ways to do text message marketing with Hubspot and other marketing tools. I’ve organized my thoughts into two sections below: 1) Notes, tips and tricks and 2) Tools you can use to easily set up SMS marketing.
1. Notes, tips and tricks
- User experience should be highest priority – Don’t send unsolicited text messages. It’s spammy. People will hate you. It’s illegal too. Only send text messages to individuals that you already have a relationship with, that are opted in, and make sure your texts are truly helpful to them.
- Don’t get sued – Who wants to lose a bunch of money? I don’t. No matter which country you do business in, there are likely business or consumer protections in place that you need to be aware of. Here in the USA, you need to have some opt-in compliance messaging you put at the bottom of each form (that they’re agreeing to when they submit the form). In the USA the TCPA and FCC are two communication regulating government agencies you should be aware of. Here’s an article from the DMA that discusses legalities behind text messaging. I’m not a lawyer, and you should talk to a lawyer for the straight facts, but one of my clients uses language similar to:
By submitting this form I give ABC Corp and its partners express written permission to contact me at the number and email I provided above, via email, phone, text message (SMS/MMS) and/or cell phone (including use of automated dialing equipment and pre-recorded calls and/or messages). This consent is not a condition of receiving services from ABC Corp.
- Get buy in – Whether you’re putting in text messaging automation that will benefit sales, customer support, retention teams, product developers or some other illustrious group, you should get their input when planning out the program and have their complete buy in before getting started. For one of my clients, I sat down with sales reps, sales leadership and their product development team to get input but I still had to revise the program three times. If I hadn’t sat down with them in the planning, I probably would have revised it six times.
- Use action triggered text messages – In the walkthrough below, where I show you how to set up text message marketing with Hubspot and other marketing tools, you’ll see that I’ve used actions to trigger text messages. Text message marketing performs much better when the message is sent immediately following some relevant action the recipient took. If you’re just sending blast text messages they’ll come across as spammy.
- Keep texts short and simple – While most SMS sending solutions (like Twillio that I’ll introduce below) allows you to send longer text messages, people are used to texting short, simple, pithy messages. Make sure your messages match how they like to text, keeping messages less than 160 characters.
2. Easy tools for setting up text message marketing
One of my latest SMS marketing implementations was done for a client who is on Hubspot, so the tools I’m highlighting below will focus on Hubspot to Twillio implementations through Zapier. That being said, I’ve put together the guide in such a way that if you’re on any other platform that integrates with Zapier the process will be the same (or so close that you’ll likely not notice the difference).
Here are some of the marketing and sales tools that you could easily use to setup automated text messages
If you don’t see your sales or marketing tool in the slides above, your system still may be covered by my guide. Zapier allows for custom webhooks and other round about integrations. Just leave a comment with what system you’re using and I’ll take a look into it for you.
Now, grab some popcorn, put up your feet, and enjoy the guide! The video guide is about 30 minutes in length but it walks you through every individual step you’ll need to take to launch your text message marketing with Hubspot!