How To Use Bulk SMS Marketing to Increase Sales

Discover the secrets of using bulk SMS marketing to boost your sales. Get insights into crafting compelling messages to maximize your marketing ROI.


The average American checks their smartphone 344 times per day or once every four minutes.
Savvy sales organizations have recognized this obsession as an opportunity and are connecting with prospects and customers via text, the channel 90% of consumers prefer.
Whether B2B or B2C, SaaS or a restaurant, you can drive more revenue through texting. If you haven’t incorporated texting into your sales enablement strategy, we’ll help you get started.
First, we’ll provide an overview of bulk text messaging, why it should be part of your sales enablement strategy, and how to use mass SMS messages to close more sales. Then we’ll review best practices for texting prospects and customers before criteria for choosing the right SMS software.
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Let’s get started with a definition.

What are Bulk SMS Messages? How To Use Bulk SMS Marketing to Increase Sales

Bulk SMS messages (also known as mass or bulk text messaging) are automated text messages that allow brands to communicate with multiple prospects and customers simultaneously. Most bulk SMS platforms can also support one-on-one communication.
Mass texting is fast, cost-effective, and produces an engagement rate 6-8 times higher than email as a sales and marketing channel.

Why Bulk Texting is Key to Sales Enablement

Behind every effective sales organization is a robust, evolving enablement strategy to ensure reps are productive and effective. Well-rounded sales enablement strategies address lead generation and qualification, content development and organization, analytics, and professional development.

Every sale begins with an interaction between a seller and a prospect.

These interactions can driven by the seller (aka “outbound”), such as cold calls and emails using paid lead lists, email marketing blasts, traditional mailings, and more. They can also be inbound and driven by the prospect, such as visits to your website through organic search, programmatic ads, or social media marketing.

How To Use Bulk SMS Marketing to Increase Sales

However the customer journey begins, sales reps need the right tools to keep conversations going. SMS messaging is a highly effective sales enablement tool, whether those conversations are one-to-one or one-to-many.

Cold calling and email marketing remain effective for specific situations, so don’t abandon them completely. However, including bulk SMS in your strategy is necessary for modern sales organizations.

Here’s why.

1. Your Prospects and Customers Prefer Texting

Sales prospecting has changed. Evolving contact preferences mean methods of the past aren’t as effective anymore.
Cold calling? Today’s consumer isn’t picking up. In fact, 94% of people won’t pick up calls from unknown numbers. As a result, less than 2% of cold calls result in a conversion. And since 80% won’t open unsolicited emails, cold emailing hasn’t fared much better.
But people do open text messages: The SMS marketing open rate is 82%. Plus, it’s the preferred method of communication for 90% of consumers with businesses.

2. It's More Personal

People generally skip formalities when texting. Crafting messages that are casual, friendly, and brief are essential when establishing trust with prospects.

3. It's Fast and Effective

Prospects are more likely to convert if you can make an introduction while your product or service is still fresh in their minds. The fastest way to do that is through texts since 95% are read and responded to within three minutes.

4. Helps Qualify Leads How To Use Bulk SMS Marketing to Increase Sales

Sales reps must focus on the leads most likely to convert to meet their quotas. But qualifying leads through traditional methods like email, phone calls, and voicemail can be time-consuming and ineffective. With a 98% open rate (compared to email’s 20%), SMS texting offers reps the ability to qualify sales leads at scale instead of waiting for an email response or callback. That means one sales rep can qualify almost 5 times as many leads with follow-up texts for each user that starts a free trial, making it easy to segment by lead quality.

5. Moves the Sales Cycle Along

Any delay in communication can stall a sales cycle. So whether you’re trying to schedule a follow-up meeting, provide an answer, or obtain information about the purchasing process, an SMS sales funnel helps keep the sales cycle moving at a quicker pace than email or phone tag.

6. Boosts Producitivity

You can use power dialer software to speed up the cold calling process, but you still need someone to pick up the phone and have a conversation.
Combining the qualification process discussed above with the ease of scheduling allows you to boost each salesperson’s productivity by giving them proper focus and a schedule full of confirmed appointments.

7. Improves Customer Retention and Build Loyalty

Depending on what you’re selling, acquiring a new customer can cost up to five times more than retaining an existing one. That’s why promoting repeat sales is so important.
Reps can cultivate strong relationships with their existing customer base easily and unobtrusively through SMS texting. Bulk texts about new product features, new releases, and product promotions can keep customers engaged, build loyalty, and make them more likely to purchase again.

8 Best Practices for Texting Prospects and Customers

Even though SMS texting is more conversational and less formal, it’s still important to practice proper etiquette. Here are some guidelines whether you’re using bulk or one-on-one SMS messaging.

1. Collect Phone Numbers

You’ll need accurate information about your contacts to incorporate SMS into your sales process. Paid phone lists aren’t a reliable source and can leave the user feeling violated. Focus on collecting first-party data instead. Standard methods of collection include asking for personal information in exchange for valuable content downloads or free trials.

2. Introduce Yourself Properly How To Use Bulk SMS Marketing to Increase Sales

The average American sends 13 texts every day and likely receives many more. Unfortunately, most of us don’t bother to save every number that lands in our inbox.
That’s why it is important to tell your contact who you are which explains how you got their mobile number. Of course, including the required opt-out goes without saying.

3. Be Concise

Respect your audience’s time and keep costs even lower by getting to the point quickly. Your customers and ROI will appreciate it.

4. Time it Right

Consider your product or service and the contacts’ time zones when deciding when to send your text.
A marketing agency for Denver’s Restaurant Week would use a different approach than a SaaS company informing customers about a new product release. Studies suggest the best time to send restaurant promotions is between 3-5 PM any day of the week, while B2B brands should text between 9-12 PM on weekdays.

5. Make it Personal

Greeting prospects and customers by name when possible is important, and SMS platforms like Sakari allow you to include custom tags to personalize bulk SMS messages.

6. Embrace Visuals

Engage prospects and customers by including images, animated gifs, audio clips, and videos. A couple of examples include an image of a new product or a brief video clip explaining a new feature.

7. Offer Something Worthwhile

It’s best to have a legitimate reason for texting someone. Unless you’re in an active sales cycle, offer something good–especially if this is the first text. Sales reps can offer an enticing promotion or first-to-know status in exchange for accepting texts. Other examples include new product releases and early-bird discounts to special events.

8. Include a Clear Call to Action (CTA)

A campaign without a clear call to action is a waste of time, energy, and money. “Schedule a meeting” is a strong CTA for a prospect who downloaded tech specs. Visitors that viewed an online demo may be directed to “download a free trial.“ Choosing the right call to action will close more sales, so test your hypothesis and let the users and data decide.

Methods to Drive More Sales with Text Messaging

Whether you’re trying to build a relationship or move the customer journey forward, there are countless applications for SMS texting in sales organizations. Here are a few:
  • Scheduling demos and appointments
  • Appointment confirmation (reduce no-shows)
  • Check in on cold leads
  • New product releases
  • Beta trial offers
  • Follow up unanswered emails and voicemails
  • Post-trial followup
  • Early-bird discount offers
  • Drip campaigns
  • Personalized offers
  • Flash sales
  • Month-end, quarter-end, or year-end discounts

What to Look for in a Bulk Text Software

Now that you understand how to drive more sales using SMS messaging, here are five things you should look for in a text messaging app for your sales team.

1. Intuitive, Feature-Rich Platform

Look for an easy-to-use platform that can support the following:
  • Two-way texting: Allows reps to connect on a more personal level with prospects and customers.
  • MMS messaging: Boosts engagement through rich media such as images, audio clips, animated GIFs, and videos.
  • Texting campaigns: Preschedules text messaging campaigns to keep hundreds or thousands of prospects and customers engaged.
  • SMS autoresponders: Provides immediate engagement with preplanned text replies, so your leads never wait.
  • Phone number groups: Separates conversations from Salesperson A and Salesperson B, so they only view and manage conversations of groups they’re part of.
  • Universal reply: Allows contacts outside of the US and Canada to reply to your reps’ alphanumeric Sender ID.

2. Seamless Integrations

Any new sales enablement tool should integrate with your existing technology stack via direct integration or SMS API.
However, a platform that integrates directly with your CRM lets you incorporate texting into existing workflows. For example, Sakari’s HubSpot integration enables sales teams to automatically send texts to once-hot prospects who have gone cold.

3. Capacity for Bulk SMS Promotional Messages

Look for a platform that supports unlimited contacts that can be easily uploaded in bulk for out-of-the-box text message sales enablement. In addition, ensure you’re able to add customized fields to personalize your messages.

4. Desktop and Mobile Support

Reps and teams should be able to access their SMS platform remotely so find an option with both a desktop dashboard and a mobile app.

5. Straightforward Pricing Built for Testing

Skip complicated pricing menus and look for platforms with easy-to-understand pricing that is built to test and scale. In addition, no contracts, month-to-month options, unlimited contacts, and credit rollover options for unused credits should be non-negotiable.

Next Steps: Complete Your Sales Enablement Strategy with SMS

Ready to complete your sales enablement strategy and drive more revenue? Learn more about Sakari’s comprehensive business text messaging service or test out text messages for your marketing or sales needs for 14 days.

Start a free trial of Sakari now

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