6 tips to improve holiday SMS marketing performance

User sharing his content at targeted SMS campaigns
September 27, 2023
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They’re making their lists, checking them twice… I’m not talking about Santa and his elves. I’m talking about your customers! With the festive season around the corner, consumers are beginning to plan their holiday gifts, parties, trips, and more. And all of that means more spending. In 2022, holiday spending in the United States reached $936.3 billion, according to the National Retail Federation.

Businesses that tap into this shopping spree can significantly boost their revenue, brand awareness, and long-term customer loyalty.

In this blog, we’ll discuss the benefits of holiday SMS marketing, some tips to improve it, and how to get started sending marketing messages at scale.

3 benefits of holiday SMS marketing

Holiday SMS marketing comes with unique benefits. Let’s take a look at three major ways it can improve your business performance.

1. Instant reach and high open rates

SMS messages have an incredibly high open rate—90% of consumers read a text message within three minutes of receiving it. This means your audience sees your holiday promotional messages almost immediately. With consumers busy during the holiday season, the ability to grab their attention can be a game-changer.

2. Direct and personalized communication

SMS marketing allows for direct and personalized communication with customers. You can address recipients by their names and tailor messages based on their preferences and purchase history. This level of personalization increases the relevance of your messages and can drive higher engagement and conversion rates.

3. Real-time updates and urgency

The holiday season often involves limited-time offers, flash sales, and changing inventory. Over 60% of consumers want to receive texts for time-sensitive events. Holiday SMS marketing enables you to send real-time updates and create a sense of urgency. Additionally, SMS is a high-engagement channel with a 45% response rate. When customers receive notifications about exclusive deals or items back in stock, they may be more likely to take action.

6 holiday SMS marketing tips

Here are six steps you can take to make your holiday marketing campaigns as effective as possible this year.

1. Build a targeted subscriber list

A targeted subscriber list is the foundation of a successful SMS marketing strategy. Having a list that’s current and specific to your target audience ensures that your messages reach the right people. Segmenting your audience based on demographics and past behavior takes this a step further, allowing you to tailor your SMS campaigns to individual preferences. Of course, only send SMS marketing messages to subscribers who have opted in to receive communications from your company. This will ensure happy recipients, limit the number of unsubscribes, and reduce the risk of being blocked from sending future messages.

2. Craft holiday-specific content

Creative and attention-grabbing holiday messaging is key to standing out in crowded inboxes. Think about incorporating limited-time offers, exclusive deals, and messaging that not only captures the essence of the holiday season but also motivates recipients to take action. If you need inspiration, generative AI can help craft compelling content. Holiday marketing is also a great way to foster brand loyalty as customers will look forward to your holiday season events and deals each year.

3. Time your text messages strategically

Timing is everything for holiday marketing. Understanding your audience's behavior patterns is essential in determining optimal sending times. It’s critical to strike a balance between maintaining engagement and avoiding message fatigue. Overwhelming your subscribers with too many messages can lead to opt-outs, so thoughtful scheduling and frequency are key to a successful holiday SMS marketing strategy.

4. Personalize your content

There are many ways to personalize your holiday marketing content. You can start by collecting customer data, such as names, demographics, preferences, and purchase history. The more data you have, the more specific your messages can be. Then, you can choose which criteria you want to segment your audience by. This will allow you to:

  • Address the recipient by name
  • Provide unique product recommendations
  • Create location-specific offers
  • Time messages appropriately

Take a look at these holiday text templates for inspiration.

5. Track your performance

Tracking metrics like open rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates is crucial to measure the impact of your holiday marketing campaigns. Key performance indicators provide insight into what's working and what needs adjustment. Don't underestimate the power of A/B testing, either. Conducting experiments to refine your messaging strategy based on data-driven insights can help you optimize your campaigns, ensuring that each SMS sent during the holiday season is more effective than the last. Plus, you can use this data to inform the following year’s strategy.

6. Choose a reliable SMS provider

Reliable providers have established relationships with mobile carriers and adhere to industry best practices. This reduces the risk of messages getting lost or delayed. A reputable provider, such as Twilio, will also ensure your SMS marketing is compliant and secure. Twilio Messaging provides consumers with scalable solutions, expert assistance, and trusted quality.

Elevate your SMS marketing program with Twilio

Ready to create your holiday SMS marketing campaign? Looking for a reliable way to send these messages to your customers around the world? Leverage Twilio Messaging, a powerful platform with integrations, scalability, and advanced messaging capabilities. Get started for free today!