Updated: Jun 12
Developing an SMS marketing campaign is not always as straightforward as logging into your account, writing a 160-character message, and clicking "send". There are multiple factors to consider before launching an SMS campaign.
Firstly, you must create a campaign that offers value to customers, such as a promotional offer, appointment reminders, or booking confirmation. Moreover, you need to determine your target audience, with some campaigns being sent to all of your contacts, and others more selectively sent to specific groups based on demographic variables, like location, age, gender, purchase history, and more.
The timing of the SMS campaign is one of the most significant factors that can impact its success. Even if you are sending a compelling discount or a witty message, sending it at the wrong time can render your efforts futile. On the other hand, a less attractive discount sent at the right time of day can perform much better and generate higher engagement.
Hence, the significance of sending campaigns during peak times should not be underestimated. However, the peak times vary depending on the campaign's content and the industry in which your business operates.
Table of contents:
Factors to consider when deciding the timing for SMS marketing
01. General Timing
It is advisable to dispatch your SMS during standard business hours, that is, from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM on weekdays. It is best to refrain from sending messages on weekends or public holidays, as people tend to pay less attention to promotional messages during those times.
02. Target audience
Take into account the age bracket and behavior of your intended audience. A younger demographic may be more receptive to messages dispatched in the evening or late at night, whereas an older demographic may prefer receiving messages during the day.
03. Purpose of the message
The objective of your communication can impact the optimal timing of its delivery. For instance, if you are advertising a lunch promotion at a restaurant, it might be most suitable to dispatch the message around/before noon.
The sector in which your business operates can also impact on the ideal timing for sending SMS marketing campaigns. For instance, if you are involved in the retail sector, it could be advantageous to dispatch messages during the holiday season, when individuals are more inclined to make purchases.
05. Field of work
Customer occupation is to be taken into consideration while deciding the time for SMS marketing campaigns. The time depends on their day hours, which may differ from person to person.
When is the best time for promotional SMS marketing?
The best time for promotional SMS marketing can vary depending on the industry and the target audience. However, here are some general guidelines for different industries:
For retail businesses, the best time to send promotional SMS messages is during the holiday season and major shopping events such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Amazon Prime Day. Additionally, weekends and evenings tend to be the best times to send promotional messages as people have more free time to shop.
Food and beverage industry
For food and beverage businesses, the best time to send promotional SMS messages is typically around mealtimes. For example, sending a message promoting a lunch special at the mid-morning or early afternoon, or promoting happy hour specials in the late afternoon or early evening.
For travel businesses, the best time to send promotional SMS messages is typically during the off-season when people are more likely to be planning their vacations. Additionally, weekends and evenings tend to be good times to send messages as people have more free time to plan their travel.
For healthcare businesses, the best time to send promotional SMS messages is typically during business hours when people are more likely to be thinking about their health. Additionally, sending messages before appointments or when prescription refills are due can be effective.
For entertainment businesses such as movie theaters, concert venues, and sports teams, the best time to send promotional SMS messages is typically on weekends and evenings when events are taking place. Additionally, sending messages before new releases or big games can be effective.
The time to send messages is scheduled for a period of 12 hours to 1 week or 1 month. The target is to get the highest user engagement during the time.
SMS marketing campaigns are time specific according to user involvement. Such as appointment reminders which are required to be sent at least 24-48 hours (about 2 days) in advance. While sending messages one more thing that needs to be considered is the time when there is rush hour. As during this time, the user will only read messages that are first in their priority list, decisions whether to send messages should be taken in the best interests of the company.
Factors to consider while sending text blasts
Text blasts or bulk messaging is carried out on a huge scale. It typically involves sending messages to a large customer base all at once. For this, we need to determine the ideal customer base for the messages.
High user interaction is a primary factor that needs to be considered while deciding on the customer base. Then we have to decide on the correct timing to send the text blasts. Correct timing should be predicted based on previous timings at which messages are sent.
Initially, some timings can be decided, and messages can be sent at all those timings. Over a significant period, we can decide on the most accurate time for maximum user interaction.
Three-day messaging rule
This is applicable when a customer already knows about your product but needs time to decide about the purchase of your product.
Sending the message immediately will not produce good results as the customer is still in the decision phase. But giving them a three-day time before sending a message will help them consider the purchase of the product in case they have forgotten about the product and reconsider their product. The message should be in such a way that it convinces the customer to buy the product.
Other factors to consider while creating SMS campaigns
In addition to the timing of SMS messages, here are some other important factors to consider when creating SMS campaigns:
Another important part for maximum user interaction after timing is the structure and clarity of the messages. Messages should be in lucid language and should be clear enough for the customer to understand. Consider sending personalized messages that address the specific interests and needs of each customer and include a clear call-to-action to encourage engagement. User engagement depends largely on the structure and format of the messages. Heavy messages containing images and gifs should not be sent as they will acquire space on users’ mobiles and would take time to send. Text messages with links can be sent as it will also help with higher user engagement for the website.
The best time is generally the time when the messages experience the highest engagement from users. The user behavior is an important factor that needs to be considered while sending out business texts.
Further, they can be divided into categories based on the demographics, professions or the most likely time at which they might be available, etc. This will also help to categorize the messages and send them based on the best time in which they will be opened.
The page loaded in the link of message should be user interactive so that user engagement is higher. The more user friendly and attractive the loaded page is, the more is the user engagement. After getting customers the second most important task is to keep them involved by sending updated messages. They can be shipping alerts, reminders for upcoming events/meetings, updates on new products, maintenance reminders or some alert messages.
Studying user behavior
Use analytics tools to track the effectiveness of your SMS campaigns, including SMS marketing KPIs such as open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates. Use this data to make adjustments to your campaign and improve its effectiveness over time.
What is not the right time for SMS Marketing?
01. Outside of business hours
Avoid sending promotional texts outside of regular business hours. If you send texts at odd hours, it could be perceived as intrusive and annoying.
02. Holidays and weekends
Holidays and weekends are times when people generally want to relax and spend time with their families and friends. Sending promotional texts during these times could be seen as an intrusion and may not be well-received.
Sending texts like those of good restaurants to go to during holidays or some must-visit places to explore simultaneously marketing the products/services offered will help promote these products and is counted as a good marketing strategy.
03. Too frequently
Sending too many promotional texts in a short period can be seen as spammy and annoying. Make sure to space out your texts and only send them when you have something valuable to offer.
04. During important events or emergencies
If there's a major event or emergency happening in your area, it's best to avoid sending promotional texts. People will likely be focused on the event or emergency, and your promotional text could be seen as insensitive and inappropriate.
05. Without consent
Always ensure that you have received explicit consent from your customers before sending promotional texts. If you send promotional texts to people who haven't given you their consent, you risk annoying them and even potentially facing legal consequences.
Initially, it is not advisable to take consent from the customer as the customer has no knowledge of the product/service so an opt-in option should be included in the message so that customer can make their own choice.
The right time for sending text messages is not universal. It changes geographically according to the choices of the people and their lifestyles. Several other factors have a huge impact on timing.
Also, the timings do not stay the same for a longer time. People’s preferences change and so does the appropriate timing for sending texts. The correct timing should be continuously tested, and new timings should be decided periodically to maintain maximum user engagement.