After skip tracing your list, SMS is an incredibly effective communication channel. It’s important you understand how to set your campaign...
So you skip traced a lead list to find potential customers. Now you’re planning to send a blast text message campaign to tell all your prospects why they should do business with you. Not so fast….
SMS is an incredibly effective communication channel for brands. But it’s important you understand how to set up that marketing campaign so you don’t violate the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA).
The last thing you want to do is get caught up in a government dragnet when you are simply trying to drum up business for your company.
Keep reading to learn how to create a safe and effective SMS marketing strategy.
SMS is still one of the most effective marketing channels with higher open rates than email, and far greater responsiveness than direct mail. The strong performance is due, in large part, to consumers’ near constant connectivity to their mobile phones.
In addition, data shows that the SMS channel is significantly less spam-filled than email marketing. According to data collected by Symantec, Kaspersky Lab, and Truecaller that was compiled by the CTIA, SMS/ texting had a spam rate of 2.8% whereas email ahd a spam rate of 53%.
While this data is exciting for business owners and marketers alike, the success of SMS marketing has certainly motivated regulators to enact guidelines.
When it comes to telephonic communication with consumers, TCPA is the law of the land. The Telephone Consumer Protection Act was created in 1991. It limits the use of automated dialing systems for marketing purposes.
Businesses should focus on the following critical areas:
If there’s one thing you take away from this post, remember this: consent is critical. As with many consumer protection regulations, consent is the backbone. When a prospect has given consent for communication, only then does it become okay to engage. The same can be said for SMS/text messaging.
75% of people wouldn’t mind receiving an SMS text message from a brand, and when you combine that with the fact that People check mobile phones 85 times per day on average, there’s a massive opportunity to establish relationships and gain trust.
Always, always, always include information about how someone can opt-out of future communications. If you’ve ever seen the “unsubscribe” button at the bottom of an email you receive or a note at the end of a text messaging telling you to text “STOP” in order to opt out, you’ve witnessed first hand how that business is attempting to stay compliant.
Every piece of communication should have opt- out information regardless of if it’s a text message, phone call, or email. Note: do not call list applies to text messages also.
The various regulations have different fine structures for data protection violations, so we’ve highlighted a few below to showcase the importance of staying compliant and how the fines levied could be truly devastating!
Phone manufacturers and mobile carriers don’t have the power to deem an activity illegal. Since CTIA is not an enforcement agency, they also don’t have the authority to decide if an activity is illegal. However, they can decide — on behalf of their members — what behaviors are unwanted. Here’s how they do that:
The rapid rise of SMS marketing has led to an increase in automated activities that are known as A2P (Application to Person) messaging. This sophisticated automation has essentially led to the text message equivalent of the dreaded robocall.
On the other end of the spectrum is P2P (Person to Person) messaging, which is defined as a two-way messaging conversation between two people. In the CTIA’s Messaging Principles and Best Practices guide, they outline what the thresholds are for “typical” consumer behavior.
The idea behind the above matrix is that if you’re doing things that do not conform to the typical behavior model, your messages may get flagged as spam or result in a failed delivery attempt. Premium SMS platforms on the market are built in a way that encourages compliant behavior and rejects the automated sending of irrelevant messaging. When you’re searching for a platform for your business, it’s incredibly important to ask about the features and functionality that is built into the software that helps with deliverability and compliance.
We hear this all the time: “But I’m messaging about BUYING from my prospect, not to SELL them something.” Our answer is that this is just semantics. TCPA is designed to address outreach for solicitation. Most attorneys would consider your offer to buy a commercial solicitation, and therefore covered under TCPA.
You should play by these rules too and ensure you are taking the necessary steps to remain compliant.
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