Despite the many ways businesses can communicate to their audience in today's digital culture, it can be increasingly challenging to maintain genuine connections with customers or even reach them through all the noise. An email was once the preferred way of customer interaction with social media following after, but even those methods are proving increasingly ineffective. We have been led to believe that if an email achieves an open rate in the 20% range, that is good! 

Unopened emails are lost conversions and missed moments of group conversation and group chat. No increased traffic comes from unopened emails, there will be no sales, and recipients will receive no value. No back-and-forth conversation can result from messages app that aren't being seen. Email workflows can also be time-consuming to implement and manage, causing a burden for the business or provider. As the inbox crowds, the average service provider or small business needs to become skilled in crafting persuasive email copy, valuable content, and appealing graphic design elements. All of this has become necessary for effective email engagement.

Social media and email often act as fail-safes for one another to ensure marketing campaigns reach consumers while simultaneously bouncing the consumer between those two communication channels. While a good strategy, in theory, businesses are left to fight the whims of social media algorithms, maintain an active presence across all channels, and hope for a high email open rate. Suppose you are not spending time crafting how your social media messaging aligns with your email marketing campaigns. In that case, you will leave your consumer feeling confused and overwhelmed.

By leveraging SMS and a tool that offers simple broadcast messaging capabilities, you can quickly deploy a text message, delivering content directly into most of your audience's hands within less than three minutes

With Subflow's SMS broadcast feature, businesses can do just that. 

Subflow's How-To Guide to Building your First SMS Broadcast 

Step 1: Define and Plan the Type of SMS Content You Want to Deliver to Your Audience

SMS content planning should be an essential part of launching your SMS subscription. Consider the problem with email marketing: because consumers are bombarded with sales, promotions, and product offerings, many campaigns are viewed as "spammy" and easily ignored by the receiver.

Your text messaging content should not be this way—especially your mass text messages (broadcasts). Utilize some of the other variety of content types beyond sales and promotional content. Consider the content types below:

  • How to's 
  • Motivational 
  • Inspirational
  • Guides
  • Lists
  • Videos
  • Photos
  • News
  • Engaging or conversational
  • Podcasts
  • Q&A's 
  • Interviews
  • Quotes
  • Testimonials
  • Infographics
  • E-courses
  • Comparisons
  • E-books
  • Workshops or Event invitation

By planning must-send content ahead of time and understanding what information your audience values most, you can thoughtfully execute meaningful content strategies. Planning will increase the likelihood that you are providing your subscribers with value and increase your chances of maintaining a long-term relationship with your audience.

Step 2: Segment Your Planned Content into Separate Categories Based on Your Desired Engagement

To develop more targeted text content and better understand your audience, you should segment your planned content into categories, known as content buckets. Content Buckets are collections of content pieces with a common theme or purpose. Providing your subscribers with various broadcast content will keep their experience fresh. It will help support subscriber satisfaction and enable you to provide the best value to your members. 

Consider segments such as Educational Information, Tips or Tricks they may benefit from, How To's, Live Updates and Announcements, Upcoming Event Notifications, Opportunities to Give Input or Feedback, and finally, Sales and Promotional Notifications last.

You should develop rules for your broadcasts based on audience engagement, feedback, and topics relevant to your business. For example, define the frequency of SMS broadcasts that your subscribers may prefer and develop any other rules that will help you maximize your broadcasts. Commit to abiding by the rules you set for using the broadcast feature; however, continually check in with your audience to ensure you are delivering value and they are enjoying their experience. 

Step 3: Set Up Your Products in Subflow and Write Your First Broadcast Text Message 

With your plan of attack formulated, you're ready to work! Begin by creating an account with Subflow if you do not have one already. Once on the platform, create a NEW PRODUCT. Write detailed descriptions of what you will be offering via SMS, price them accordingly, and get ready to share your listing page URL with your audience.

Step 4: Convert Your Audience to Subscribers with Free SMS Subscriptions 

With your subscriptions prepped and your first broadcast ready to go, it's time to invite your audience to join your SMS subscription. First, list all the relevant social media platforms and communication channels, both online and off, that you are connecting with your audience or customers on. Next, go through that list and link your Subflow product listing page where applicable. Then, take it a step further and draft up an email to your contact list announcing the launch of your new product and inviting them to join you there. Make sure to describe exactly how they should expect this product to work and give clear examples of the type of value they should expect from you on it.

Not only should you gather initial subscribers from the moment of posting - but your listing page should be readily available to allow you to convert subscribers going forward passively. Get into the habit of mentioning your SMS content subscription whenever you interact with an audience. Letting them know that you have an SMS list they can join will ensure that you're always top of mind regarding their content consumption.

Step 5: Start Broadcasting—Build Trust and Convert to Paid Subscriptions by Adding Value and Not Spamming

Now that you have converted your following from audience members to engaged subscribers, it's time to send your first broadcast message! Head to the broadcast section of the Subflow platform and select the product audience to which you would like to send a broadcast message. Again, remember to keep the text clear, concise, and genuinely beneficial for its recipient.

Note: Subflow allows linking to any content within your broadcast text message—get creative with it!

For some merchants or service providers, your goal may be to convert your free subscribers into paid subscribers to capture recurring revenue for your valuable content. With this in mind, you should work to gain your subscribers' trust by not broadcasting too many overtly sales-focused broadcast messages and instead aiming to add actual value. You may also want to consider holding back the entirety of your valuable content and using a free SMS subscription to allow your audience to sample a portion of your helpful product, experience, or knowledge. 

Consumers unsubscribe from subscriptions or memberships for several reasons, varying from too much communication to unrelated content. Therefore, understanding your audience and intentionally deploying consumer-centered broadcasts are vital in finding success with paid or free SMS subscriptions.

Step 6: How to Tackle Responses

While you may not intend for your broadcast communication to lead to 1:1 SMS communication, it can. Subscribers can respond to your broadcasts. However, unlike group messaging that most are familiar with via SMS and text if a subscriber replies to a broadcast - that message is sent only to you, the service provider. Any subscribers' communication with you is private and visible to your and the subscriber alone.

Knowing this, you can perhaps construct subscriptions and memberships that leverage the anonymity of private response to a broadcast message. The possibilities of how you use the Subflow platform can be limitless - thank's to the simplicity of the platform.

Want to Learn More about Subflow's SMS Broadcasting Capabilities? 

SMS broadcasting takes no time to type and send. It's precisely why SMS broadcasting is such an effective form of mass communication—no more anticipating the algorithms or vying for likes. With Subflow's web-based platform, users can drive engagement and nurture customers in the amount of time it takes to send and receive text messaging.

Watch this video for more information on Subflow's SMS solutions, or sign up and get started in as little as 10 minutes!