“Facts are stubborn things, but statistics are pliable.” ~ Mark Twain
SIGN UP BELOW...I BET YOU CAN'T!
I recently had a meeting with a gentleman who was a high ranking executive at both Apple and Google at points in his career. He said the following: "I don't see texting having a major impact for businesses."
There are times in your life to jump in and argue, and there are times to shut up. This was not the time to argue, and I'm so bad at shutting up. The less seasoned Eric would have come out guns blazing like a Sherman Tank and run roughshod right over that statement...thank goodness I've matured. I offered a very delicately worded rebuttal; "it's a communication tool direct to mobile, some businesses may not need that direct to consumer power, while others may incorporate it as a tool within their business model." He agreed.
This was so much better than my first thought..."are you f'n kidding me?"
...and then he said "but I would not be the one to ask, I don't text and I have never used social media." Ahhh, that makes a lot more sense. It also means I can relay this conversation, and he won't read this!
It still amazes me businesses have not incorporated texting into their models. Hell, only 5% of businesses have incorporated any marketing automation into their business models. The 5% who have? They are crushing it...technology never forgets and always follows up, humans don't - especially sales people. Even less have incorporated ”SMS Marketing Automation Platforms” that would automate something as meaningful as birthday texts.
Now for my prediction...the days of email being the king of marketing are numbered. Why do I say that? Just look at the trends...and the trends are down in all the wrong places for email, and up in all the key demographics (reach/response/desire) for texting.
In 2015, 80-90% (depending on which study you check) of all global email is SPAM. One in 5 emails is read. People aren't reading or responding to email like they used to and the numbers are dropping. I hypothesize that SPAM has significantly hurt email's power and will continue to do so. Texting is a true "opt in" when it comes to marketing and thus reduces the likelihood of such negative impact significantly, especially in the short term.
• 91% of people have a cellular phone within reach at any given time.
• People respond to texts 60 times faster than emails on average.
• People text 4.5 times more than they call.
• There will be 1.4 times as many mobile devices as people by 2018.
• Texts have 6-8 times the response rates of emails.
• 98% of texts are read compared to 22% of emails.
• 19% of mobile users click on URL's through text compared to 4.2% of emails.
• 90% of all text messages are opened within 3 minutes. Emails are read within 2.5 days.
• SMS Coupons are 10 times more likely to be redeemed than mail or print coupons.
• 90% of people report favorably on receiving offers from vendors through text.
• 64% of people would rather text a business than call the business.
• 9 out of 10 mobile searches lead to action. More than half lead to sales. These are staggering numbers.
Did you read these stats and digest them? These stats are from Cisco, Pew, OneReach and more...
90% of mobile searches lead to action? 64% would rather text a business? 90% like getting offers? 60 times faster response than email? 1.4 times as many mobile devices as PEOPLE. These numbers are STAGGERING.
Statistics can often be misleading, but in this case it should be pretty clear that something powerful is happening with texting, and businesses need to take notice.
Leads360 Text Messaging Study – key findings:
Only 2.1% of sales prospects were touched using text messaging, according to the research of more than 3.5 million prospect interactions.
• Texting at the right point in the sales process drives conversion – Prospects who receive a text after contact has been made convert at more than twice the rate of the average contacted lead.
• Send text messages with purpose – three or more purposeful text messages after contact has been made with a prospect can increase conversion rates by 328%.
If used inappropriately, sending text messages to prospects can be detrimental – text messaging a prospect prior to making contact on the phone decreases the likelihood of ever making contact by 39%.
There are a lot of sales people and business owners out there looking for an edge. Throwing money at marketing can be a costly way to learn that you can't buy success. You can either be ahead of the curve or play catch up. One way or another, texting for business purposes is a great way to increase conversions and it is not being utilized by most businesses. I'm not going to call and tell him, but I think my friend from Google/Apple may be surprised at what the future holds.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Eric Beans is CEO of Texting Base, Inc., out of Orlando, Florida. Texting Base is a cloud-based ”SMS Marketing Automation Platform” which allows entities to personalize group text messages.
Prior to Texting Base, Eric was the first US employee of TechSpan which became Headstrong. Headstrong sold for $550M to GenPact.
With a group of partners in 2005, Eric started Premier Mortgage Capital, Inc., a nationwide state charted Mortgage Company that grew to over 2B/Year in originations.
Eric is the author of "Changing The World Through Texting Software" and writes the entrepreneur section of "LA Style Magazine." Eric is an inventor, investor, and longtime entrepreneur.
Texting Base does not offer legal advice-please consult an attorney before starting to text for business purposes.