SMS Marketing Best Practices

How to Instantly Reduce SMS Marketing Churn

Jun 01, 2020

While growing SMS subscribers is important for any SMS marketing campaign, so is retaining those SMS subscribers. To help retain those SMS subscribers, you’ll want to track the SMS subscriber churn rate for each and every mass text message you send. Why?

By tracking the SMS subscriber churn rate for each and every mass text message you send, you’ll quickly be able to determine which promotions are driving the lowest SMS subscriber churn, and which promotions are driving the highest. With this information, you’ll be able to create better future SMS promotions, which will have lower subscriber churn.

 

What is SMS Marketing Churn?

While tracking the growth of your SMS marketing campaign is important, it’s also good to track how many subscribers you are losing, which is referred to as churn. You can use this measurement to gauge which text messages aren’t perceived by your subscribers as being valuable enough to remain a subscriber.

Formula: Divide the amount of subscribers that leave your SMS campaign by the total amount of subscribers.

 

SMS Marketing Churn Strategy #1

There is however one trick that will instantly reduce SMS subscriber churn for all your SMS promotions. The crazy thing about this one trick is that we rarely see any SMS marketers using it, even though it only takes a few minutes to set up, and doesn’t require any special development. So what is this one trick? All you have to do is add the following sentence to the end of your opt-out confirmation text message, which is the message an SMS subscriber receives after they opt-out of your SMS campaign, usually by texting “STOP” or “Unsubscribe” to your short code.

Want to re-subscribe, reply {SMS keyword}.

SMS Marketing Strategy to Reduce Churn - 1

Pretty simple huh? Why does adding this one sentence to the end of your opt-out confirmation text message reduce SMS subscriber churn? It’s because it helps you win back the SMS subscribers that for some reason unsubscribed, but either did so by accident, or they changed their mind after unsubscribing, and now want to re-subscribe. While most likely you as the SMS marketer know your opt-in SMS keyword, it’s safe to say that your SMS subscriber has forget the SMS keyword they used to subscribe to the SMS campaign. This is a problem, because now the SMS subscriber is unsubscribed, and can’t figure out how to re-subscribe to the campaign. By adding that one little sentence to your opt-out confirmation text message, you’ll automatically start to reduce your SMS subscriber churn on all your mass text messages.

One thing to note, you don’t need to include the SMS short code in the re-subscribe instructions, and including it could even hurt your chances of winning back that SMS subscriber. Why don’t you need to include the SMS short code in the re-subscribe instructions? It’s actually pretty simple, there’s no need to include the SMS short code, because the opt-out confirmation text message is already being delivered on the SMS short code that an SMS subscriber needs to use to re-subscribe to the SMS campaign. This means that all an SMS subscriber needs to do is simply reply to the opt-out confirmation text message, as their reply is already being sent to the correct SMS short code. By including the SMS short code in the re-subscribe instructions, it’s likely that the SMS subscriber will assume that they must create a brand new text message to re-subscribe to the SMS campaign. If this happens, you’re only increasing the effort needed from an SMS subscriber to re-subscribe, which is never a good thing when trying to win back SMS subscribers.

 

SMS Marketing Churn Strategy #2

If you really want to reduce SMS subscriber churn, try offering an incentive to encourage SMS subscribers to re-subscribe in the opt-out confirmation text message. Incentives are a great way to not only gain new SMS subscribers (study found it can increase new subscribers by as much as 520%), but also a great way to win them back. This method though requires a little more complexity, as you have to engineer your SMS marketing campaign to only offer the re-subscribe incentive to actual SMS subscribers that are legitimately unsubscribing, rather than unsubscribing to gain access to the incentive. An example of an incentive to encourage SMS subscriber to re-subscribe is below.

Receive 20% off your next order, when you re-subscribe. Reply {SMS keyword} to re-subscribe.

SMS Marketing Strategy to Reduce Churn - 2

As always, the best way to reduce SMS subscriber churn is to send valuable SMS promotions, but hopefully this one little trick can help you win back those SMS subscribers that unsubscribed by accident, or they changed their mind after unsubscribing.

 

SMS Marketing Churn Statistics

We wrote a blog post on what retailers can expect to see in terms of churn rates for their SMS marketing campaigns. In the post we analyzed 1,180 SMS campaigns sent by retailers, over the course of 450 days to find the answer. To read the post, click here.

 

STOP Message Requirements

If you’re going to be modifying your “STOP” response, it’s important to know what’s required in a “STOP” message. See the video below to learn what you need to include to be compliant.

 

STOP Disclosure Frequency

A common tactic to reduce SMS subscriber churn is to not tell subscribers how to unsubscribe. This is obviously not the best idea, but it does bring up a good question – How often do you need to give subscribers instructions on how to unsubscribe? To find the answer, check out the following video.

 

If you have questions about your SMS marketing campaign, feel free to contact the team at Tatango, we’re here to help!


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