When you hear conversations about text message marketing most of the information surrounding the capabilities are more commonly aligned with practical solutions associated with companies in the private and public realm. The interesting thing about SMS marketing is that whether you are a small, medium or large company, the techniques still work! Why? Because direct, instant and reliable communication is meant for everyone, so it can work for the government sector as well.
Air Force Bases offer a lot of services. Conventionally they are thought of as repositories for new and retired air crafts or home to some of the most skilled minds in science, technology, aerospace and engineering. They offer all of those amazing things, but they also offer interpersonal training, skill development programs for youth, adults, and families, libraries, restaurants, career workshops, counseling and a lot of other really helpful resources. These other services are offered to consumers and generate operational revenue for the facility, which is why marketing is still a huge opportunity for them. Public affairs is also another important department on the base that involves campaigning for recruitment and developing a strong reputation for stakeholders. How the base communicates these details on the lifestyle and benefit of the Air Force Base is important to what brings it value. All of these reasons need an outreach strategy and that is why SMS marketing has opportunity.
3 Basic Steps On Implementing SMS
Creating any successful SMS marketing program for your Air Force Base really takes three basic steps. The first is development, the second is production and the third is maintenance.
The development stage is generally where most of the heavy lifting starts because in order to have a successful SMS program you have to set the foundation. All that really means is integrating the SMS marketing program into your brand identity. So what does that mean? It basically means creating awareness around the program, creating digital or print collateral with compelling call to actions for your mobile audience that is motivating enough to make them join. Telling them to opt-in would usually just be as simple as telling them to text a KEYWORD to a short code number like 52236 for example. Put it on every single channel, literally every single space in your digital frontier where you can put it. Let your creativity flow. Another huge component in the development stage is converting your data into what is called “usable data”. Since SMS marketing works on an opt-in and opt-out basis, you have to get compliance from your mobile subscribers before you reach them. If you are a new business, that just means deploying an opt-in strategy from the go. Although you may have already harvested data from years of prior operation, which means that it is time to convert all that data into “usable data” by sending them SMS program disclaimers, letting them know that they have the opportunity to be in your program if they opt-in. Compliant-based SMS marketing software should support this part of the developmental phase of your program and offer opt-in methods that make this seamless such as a local import feature where you can enter the number directly, customizable webforms, keywords and other avenues to feed subscriber data into your program like data APIs.
The production stage is about activity and engagement. This is where all the direct, instant and reliable communication in the form of SMS campaigns is deployed into targeted campaigns. You know how in the development stage you were growing your subscriber list into segments based on their demographics or psychographics? Since you have all of that information now, it is time to send live or scheduled SMS campaigns to them regarding offers, promotions, incentives, information or news. You can even automate SMS campaigns based off of birthdays, recurring events and event triggers which go out based on some affirmative action. Robust SMS marketing software will give you all of this functionality and make the completion of these engagement actions easy and simple.
Like all engines that power a process, they all need some maintenance. Although SMS messaging software does not need a fuel or oil level examination like a jet. Instead it needs a dashboard finetune based on reporting from prior campaign activity. Now that you have developed your mobile marketing program from the ground up and started entering the SMS inbox of your mobile subscribers. It is time to start thinking about how you can make it better. Some fine tune objectives that you can focus on and ask yourself questions about are the following:
- Are there any noticeable list growth signals in my data?
List growth signals would be indicators like which keyword and webforms are showing increases in the number of subscribers based on your marketing initiatives surrounding them.
- Are there any mobile data cleansing initiatives?
SMS marketing software that offers advanced number reporting should tell you the validity of your data. It should be able to tell you what numbers were delivered, what numbers were invalid and/or bad. Based on this information you can filter out those bad numbers so you can have more accuracy of the effectiveness of your campaigns.
- Are there any positive URL click metrics for specific campaigns?
URL click reporting is a great conversion metric to measure the effectiveness of your campaign offers, promotions and endorsement. Using this information, you can use it to gauge what campaigns your mobile audience is engaging and which ones your mobile audience are not.
We hope the education in this article on the strategy for SMS marketing and Air Force Bases was helpful. That is the viable nature behind SMS communication. It provides small bite size information that helps you get the objective of your communication across in a short-form and concise way. It can also be used to direct your recipients to more long-form content without it seeming too overwhelming from the surface. Kind of like what big news mediums do with headlines. Again, SMS is just a canvas that can be filled with anything from private to government engagement.
Want to learn more about how you can use SMS marketing for your Air Force Base today? Click here.