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Running an SMS Marketing campaign can seem, at first sight, pretty easy: you just have to write a short message, select your recipients and click send. It can take no more than 10 minutes, and that’s why it’s so convenient for small and mid-size companies.

But what if you could maximize the results?

You can make a lot of improvement in only 160 characters. Here we’ll show you 8 core elements that your message should include (and why) to make the most out of your SMS marketing campaigns.


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Call to action (CTA)

Tell your clients their next step. If you don’t know it yet, then you might want to reconsider why you’re sending the SMS in the first place. Think about the goal of your message, and the CTA will follow. Keep it simple but compelling, be direct and avoid double-meanings or difficult words.

Eg. “Show this text”, “Click here”, “Enter GIFT on checkout”, “Come with a friend”, “Finish your purchase”


Offer something valuable

We need to put ourselves in our shoppers’ shoes: if you had to perfectly fine shops where to buy a jacket, why would you choose one over the other? Give them something they might find useful to help them make up their minds. Normally, it’ll come in the form of a coupon, discount or free gift, but you could also make a contest. Get creative!

Eg. “2×1”, “get a 10% discount”, “save 5£”, “FREE dessert with your meal”, “3×2”, “get 7£ of credit”


Include the name of your store in your message

The target is that your audience remembers your name. Give all your messages a special touch of branding to keep them thinking about you, not only the name of your store but also the name of your products. For example, if you have a spa, instead of offering a “spa day” offer the “Deluxe Relaxation Package”. Extra tip: personalize your keywords as well.



It is more likely that almost all your recipients will have internet access on their phones. You have the chance to include a URL to a relevant page on your site to the extent of your message beyond the 140 characters that make one SMS. Use it wisely! Drive them to meaningful and related pages on your site and make sure that they’re adapted to mobile, or in a word, responsive.

Extra tip: use URL shorteners to use fewer characters in your SMS. This will also allow you to track your results. (Read here why tracking links is so important)

Eg. “Find your closest store bit.ly/73hdn”, “Learn more: bit.ly/jdh785”, “Check our availability: bit.ly/79fhg4”, “Buy your tickets here: bit.ly/7923gh”


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Sender’s name

Some providers and plans give you the possibility to personalize the sender’s name (in Octopush you can do it with our Premium SMS). This is the first thing your audience will read when you send them a message, so if you want to avoid being ignored or deleted by mistake, customize it and let them know it’s you. The more they see your name, the more they’ll consider your brand.


Personalize your message

Use the data you have on your audience to tailor the messages you send to them. It’ll feel more familiar, personal and it’ll increase their attachment to your brand. One easy way of doing this is to use tags or variables in your automated messages. If you’re using a CRM, or have an e-commerce, you can easily do this using the app Zapier (check out our post on how to do automations with SMS for your ecommerce)

Add a sense of urgency

There’re a lot of studies regarding the psychology of urgency, but what’s important about it is that people are more willing to convert when they feel that time or things are running out. Add urgency resources like a deadline, a countdown or limited stock, highlight potential price increases or scarcity of an item. If this is your strategy, you might as well include it in your CTA’s.

Eg. “Only 3 left. Get one NOW”, “Last day! Make your reservations now”, “Price increases soon. Buy tickets at promo price”.



In some countries, it’s compulsory to include a way to unsubscribe from your promotions (in France, for example, the law dictates that you should include “STOP au XXXX” in every marketing SMS you send). However, though you could avoid this, it’s always advisable to give your audience control over what they want or may not want to receive from you. We’re looking to delight and engage with our customers, not to flood them with annoying messages they don’t want to receive.


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