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What is the Difference Between SMS and MMS?

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SMS and MMS are different ways of sending text messages, and as text marketing has become increasingly popular in recent years, it is definitely not going away anytime soon.  

So, what are SMS and MMS messages, anyway? They might seem similar, but they have key differences that can benefit your mobile marketing strategy in unique ways.

What is the Difference Between SMS and MMS?

The main difference between SMS and MMS is the type of content they contain. SMS allows for text-only communication, while MMS allows you to send pictures, video, and other media types. The one you choose to use for your text marketing depends on your budget and strategy. 

What is SMS?

SMS stands for Short Messaging Service. It is the basic message type that you can send between mobile devices. It only supports text and cannot send images, audio, GIFs or even emojis. It is limited to 160 characters, and longer messages are frequently separated into multiple texts.

Send longer messages with Texting Base and free yourself from character limits. 

What is MMS?

MMS stands for Multimedia Messaging Service. Any text you send that contains a picture, GIF, or even an emoji is an MMS. MMS has a much larger character limit of 1600, which increases the amount of information you can send to your customer.

SMS vs. MMS Pros and Cons

If you’re on the fence about which to choose for your marketing strategy, let’s briefly break down the pros and cons of each. You may find that you don’t need the bells and whistles of MMS or that you can’t achieve your goals with the limitations of SMS.

SMS Advantages 

  • At 160 characters, it is quick and easy to send out a short blurb to your customers.
  • SMS is cheaper. Cellular networks charge two to three times more to send an MMS, so using SMS marketing is better if you have a small budget. 
  • Any cell phone can receive SMS messages, even if it is not a smartphone. This increases the number of people you can reach.
  • These days, most people have an unlimited texting plan, so there is no cost to the customer to receive the SMS.

SMS Disadvantages 

  • If you want to send an image, it will appear as a link, and the customer will have to click the link to see the image, resulting in a clunky user experience.
  • Since SMS is most compatible with plain-text, it is not as attention-grabbing as an image or GIF, and it can result in a lower open rate (the percentage of people who open your message).

MMS Advantages

  • MMS supports emojis, images, and GIFs, attracting more attention to your message and increasing engagement.
  • MMS has a larger character limit (1600) that allows you to send more information to your customers.

MMS Disadvantages 

  • It is more expensive to send MMS
  • If a customer does not have a smartphone, they might not be able to receive parts of your message.
  • MMS marketing combines text and graphics. If you don’t have skills in those areas, you might have to hire someone to write copy and create images, which is another cost to your business. 

Boost Your Reach With a Bulk SMS Provider Like Texting Base

Whether you choose SMS, MMS or a combination of the two, both are valuable tools in your marketing strategy. SMS is ideal for a minimalist, streamlined campaign and a smaller budget. In contrast, MMS allows you to send longer, eye-catching messages at a higher price point. 

Texting Base offers an easy-to-use, streamlined platform that makes any marketing strategy a breeze! Find out how much Texting Base can do for your company by signing up for a free trial today!