Black Friday 2021 is expected to be the busiest United States holiday shopping day of the year. If you’ve been waiting for a better occasion to get the best out of your SMS marketing list… Let us tell you, it’s now.
Due to social distancing and other COVID-19 restrictions, shoppers made $9 billion worth of Black Friday online purchases last year. Although the online shopping trend is here to stay, people are finally getting more comfortable with this unfortunate situation. Chances are, some of them are going back in stores to hunt for the best Black Friday deals.
Whether you sell online or own a physical shop, Black Friday SMS campaigns can be a great way to not only remind people about your business but also encourage them to choose you over your competitors.
In this post, you’ll find some Black Friday text marketing tips and ideas that you can simply adjust to your store.
When is Black Friday in 2021?
In 2021, Black Friday shopping officially starts on November 26th. It is common to extend it through the whole weekend, which is followed by Cyber Monday the next day.
However, many businesses start marketing their Black Friday deals and promotions at least a few weeks in advance to create some buzz and give customers time to create shopping wish lists.
BFCM means Black Friday Cyber Monday (Cyber Monday being an online-shopping-only event).
BFCM refers to the whole shopping weekend starting on Friday and lasting until Monday midnight. Due to the e-commerce surge amid pandemic, the line between Black Friday and Cyber Monday is thinner than ever but it’s still common to call this even a BFCM Weekend.
9 tips for winning Black Friday SMS campaigns
Crafting your SMS strategy for Black Friday might get overwhelming unless you know and follow the key rules.
Find 9 of them below.
1. Encourage people to opt-in for SMS way before
To send Black Friday messages to your potential customers, you must get their permission first. Without a solid (and legal!) SMS marketing list, there’s simply no way to move further this point.
Some ways you can get people to opt-in for your SMS marketing campaigns:
- Let your email subscribers know. If you use email marketing, you can include instructions for SMS opt-in in your next newsletter, stating the benefits that your text messages will bring to those who will subscribe.
- Add a sign-up form to your website or use pop-ups. Allow your store visitors to leave their phone number right on your website to receive SMS discounts and offers in the future.
- Organize a contest. You can also do it the fun way – organize a “text-to-win” competition and watch your list grow. You can put this on social media or again, present the rules in one of your email newsletters.
- Invite to subscribe at the checkout. Someone has just bought/is about to buy something from you, meaning that they already trust you. Enable an option to subscribe to your text marketing campaigns by simply clicking the checkmark next to the shipping details, for instance.
Once you're happy with your subscriber base, it’s time to let them know about your upcoming Black Friday deals.
2. Start building buzz early
Although late November might still seem far away, you should keep in mind that first searches for Black Friday deals appear at the end of September, according to Google Trends.
As people start planning their shopping lists and look for possibilities to save some money, it’s a perfect time to put your business on their radar.
Sending a teaser SMS and letting your subscribers know what they can expect from you this Black Friday can encourage them to visit your store to check out more. If you play your cards right, they will come back when it’s finally time.
Personalization can help you meet the needs of a demanding consumer and put you ahead of the competition. 91% of consumers are more likely to shop with brands that recognize, remember, and provide relevant offers and recommendations, research by Accenture has found.
Of all marketing channels, SMS is one of the most personal and straightforward. However, you can’t expect generic messages to work as well as you’d want, and that’s why you need to tailor them for specific subscribers.
For this, you need to know your audience. Addressing them by their names is nice enough, but think about how you can make your offers more relevant. Segment your audience based on location, age, gender, etc. This will allow you to craft a message that’s more likely to convert.
4. Offer real value
People subscribe to receive marketing messages because they expect to benefit from them. So with every Black Friday message you send, think – does it provide real value?
As great as promotional messages are, you might want to vary the content of your SMS a bit. Offer different incentives, send some useful Black Friday tips and tricks, organize and invite to participate in a contest, send links to your latest (relevant) blog posts, etc.
SMS marketing can make it easier for them to discover your best deals while also increasing your brand awareness.
5. Use more than a plain text
The content of text messages is quite limited but you can still take advantage of some simple visuals, like pictures or GIFs (MMS messaging).
Visuals can boost user engagement, grab their attention, and make them want to learn more about your offer.
For instance, if you want to promote a new product, showing it instead of just talking about it can bring you a much better result. Or if you are a realtor, including a picture in your house listings can encourage responses.
However, note that photos and/or GIFs can do more damage than good if overused or used incorrectly. For example, there’s probably no need to send a picture with an appointment reminder since it won’t provide any additional value.
6. Master CTAs
Call to action, or CTA is one of the most important parts of your SMS copy. You can choose whether you want to use a customer’s name (although it’s recommended) but failing to include a clear CTA can significantly impact the results of your SMS campaigns in a negative way.
Doesn’t matter what your offer is, make sure to let your subscribers know what you want them to do next by using phrases like:
- Shop online
- Visit our store
- Buy now
- Join today
- Claim your discount, etc.
7. Choose the right timing
Another crucial text marketing point not only when planning Black Friday SMS campaigns but always is to choose the right timing to spread your message. One well-crafted message sent at the wrong time can determine how your customers see you and even boost unsubscribe rates.
When scheduling your messages, keep your audience in mind. What is their schedule, where do they live, any specific occupation?
For instance, if you run your business in the United States but have international customers, mind the time zone differences. Stay-at-home moms/fathers might not appreciate you bugging them with your promos early in the morning. Teachers might be less engaged during the first part of the day, etc.
Choosing the right timing can impact how well your offers will do and whether or not you achieve the results you aim for.
8. Use SMS marketing in combination with email
Using a combination of SMS and email marketing can provide your customers with a seamless communication experience, not to mention result in higher engagement rates and better customer retention.
While email is more suitable for long-form content, SMS is perfect for sealing the deal. Therefore, when combined, they can be a powerful duo that enables you to vary between different ways of spreading information and adjust to different habits of consumers.
Some ways you can combine SMS with email marketing this Black Friday:
- Use email to inform about upcoming offers and SMS to remind them to act on them.
- Introduce customers to your TOP-selling products via email and send SMS discounts to encourage purchases.
- Share some advice on how to effectively plan the Black Friday shopping budget in your email newsletter and send SMS reminders to those who haven't opened it yet.
9. Don’t forget Cyber Monday
Finally, think of merging Black Friday and Cyber Monday into one BFCM Weekend. Historically, Black Friday is associated with physical stores and Cyber Monday has always been an event focused on online sellers.
If you’re in e-commerce, it makes more sense to combine these two occasions and fill two needs with one deed. You will then be able to broaden your audience and extend your sales through the three-day weekend, increasing the possibility to sell more.
Black Friday text marketing ideas for 2021
Conversational SMS marketing
To engage in a conversation with your subscribers, you can use two-way communication available via SMS. This way, you can actually ask what deals your customers prefer and increase the chances of conversion.
“X days of deals”
“Days of deals” campaigns can help you drive customers to your store and boost repeat purchases. You can send the hottest deal available that day for 3 days, for example, or choose any other similar strategy that best suits your business.
Flash sales and limited-time offers
Black Friday and Cyber Monday is the perfect time to benefit from FOMO – the fear of missing out. Flash sales, limited-time deals, and other time-sensitive offers create urgency and people tend to act fast while the offer still stands.
You can use BFCM SMS discounts to encourage shoppers to spend more money and increase their average order value (AOV). For instance, you can offer customers bigger discounts for spending more money with every purchase. Like giving $10 off orders over $100, $20 off orders over $200, etc.
Show appreciation to VIP customers
Events like this are a perfect time to reward your loyal customers. They've been shopping with you for a while already, give them extra perks to express your gratitude and encourage them to keep the pace.
Offer SMS-only deals
Reward your subscribers with SMS-only deals. This will not only make them feel more special and cared for but can also help to grow your list. Special SMS-only deals can encourage customers to “join the club” since they can get extra benefits that others don’t.
Bonus: Conduct a survey after BFCM sales
Once BFCM sales are over, send your subscribers an SMS survey so that they can share their experience with your brand. This will help you collect some valuable feedback and improve for the next year.
Conquer Black Friday 2021 with SMS marketing
Black Friday is both a great way to save some money on something you’ve been wanting for a while and, let’s be honest, even entertain yourself by simply enjoying the process of shopping.
As nearly 10 out of 10 people tend to open and read the SMS messages that they get, SMS marketing is one of the best ways to pass your offers to your potential customers.
So before building your SMS strategy for Black Friday 2021, consider these Black Friday marketing ideas to get the best out of this event. Happy selling!