When someone from your audience opts in to one of your mobile messaging lists, it’s like you are beginning a new relationship with them. Because of that, Welcome Messages and Welcome Series are imperative to starting that relationship off on the right foot. As you begin to curate your Mobile Welcome Series, you’ll want to keep these three key steps in mind:
- Follow Opt-In Best Practices: Get an explicit opt-in and follow protocol
- Make a Good First Impression: Begin your relationship with a Welcome Message
- Map Out the Series: Craft a series of messages specific to your subscriber
Opt-In Best Practices
A Keyword is a word that your audience can text to your shortcode/longcode, typically to receive an offer or some pertinent information. You can promote Keywords on-air, in print, in social media posts, etc. You can also use QR codes to help make the process simpler for your audience.
Here are a few other quick tips about mobile opt-ins:
- Gather explicit opt-ins (do not pre-check your opt-ins)
- Provide multiple ways to opt-in – use both webforms and keywords! And promote each in all of your core media.
- Use clear messaging – be concise and include all necessary information about what your audience is opting into
Make A Good First Impression
A Welcome Message allows you to introduce your brand to your new subscriber, encourage engagement, and strengthen your relationship with your subscriber. It also now offers you the opportunity to begin gathering data about that subscriber for segmentation and personalization.
Reiterate the Terms of the Relationship
First thing’s first – when creating your Welcome Message, you’ll need to make sure you are following compliance guidelines. Within your message, remember to include:
- Message frequency
- Message and data rates may apply
- Clear opt-out
- How to get help
Make Sure Somebody’s Home
The quickest way to validate and legitimize a phone number is to enact a double opt-in, and welcome messages/series can act as an informal opt-in!
When using a keyword opt-in, you will definitely want to add a double opt-in because, typically, when someone from your audience texts in a keyword, they are not added to a list. So, after an audience member texts a keyword, include a double-opt-in asking a subscriber to respond Y (or something similar) to be added to one of your associated lists. Now they aren’t a lost contact, and you’ll be able to communicate with them going forward! Also be sure to include compliance language in your double opt-in.
Your audience receives a flurry of texts daily, and you want to make sure you aren’t lost in the noise. So when creating your welcome messaging, ensure that your first welcome message is set to send as soon as the user subscribes. Within your first message, thank the user for subscribing, craft the messaging so it utilizes the tone and attitude of your brand, keep it short and sweet, and, most of all, deliver value.
Your welcome messaging should deliver some kind of value to your subscriber to engage them from the start. Include a call to action that aligns with your goals. Here are some examples of calls to action to get you started:
- Reward programs
- Link to a contest
- Ask to bookmark/save your contact card for better brand recognition
- Event locator
- Link to petition
- Link to donation site
- Link to a survey
You could also take a different approach and provide important information about your organization to evoke emotion to make the subscriber more invested. Another great tactic is to ask for more information about your subscriber to drive personalization. And have fun with it! Include images or emojis if that coincides with your brand.
Map Out the Series
Take your Welcome Message to the next level by creating a Welcome Series. You’ve started your relationship with your subscriber, so now is the time to solidify the value your organization can provide!
Think Big Picture
Ensure you are consistently delivering quality and engaging content by sending your subscribers on a journey that is valuable to them. Also, remember that this series is an opportunity to get to know your subscriber better. Always attempt to gather more subscriber data to further drive segmentation and personalization.
The Welcome Schedule
Include 2-4 messages within your Welcome Series. Start off with an action request or offer to hook your subscriber. Then use the rest of the series to introduce the subscriber to your organization, explain the kind of messaging they will receive, and ask more about their interests.
If you find that the subscriber converts or provides additional information, use this opportunity to send them down a more personalized path. For example, if they provide you with their zip code, their next message could include upcoming events that are within their zip code radius.
Here are a few more tips to help you make your Welcome Series the best it can be.
Your messaging should always align with what the subscriber signed up for, and it should maintain the promised frequency.
Always Collect More Data
Encourage a closer relationship with your subscribers by asking more about them. This will make your subscribers feel valued and also allow you set up more precisely targeted campaigns in the future – driving even more value!
Use the data you currently have to make your Welcome Series more customized. Did you ask for your subscriber’s name on your opt-in form? Use that to personalize even your first messages!
- Appropriate tone of voice (i.e. friendly for ‘Welcome to our list’ or excited/urgent for ‘Sign up for our event’)
- Clear unsubscribe
- Content/Product personalization (i.e. recommended events or products based on previous actions)
- First name personalization
- Utilize images, gifs, memes, etc
- Strong and clear CTA’s with links
- Elements affecting the subscribers’ emotions (i.e. evoke a connection to your cause or excitement about your brand/offer)
Review And Analyze
Review the results of your messaging on a regular basis and monitor your deliverability metrics to maintain a healthy sending reputation.
Stats To Watch
- Click-Through Rate
- Delivery Rate
- Unsubscribe Rate
- Conversion Rate
- Response Rate
- List Growth Rate
Test, Test, Test
You can test these areas of your messaging to see what resonates with your audience. Try A/B testing to compare two options of one test point to determine which works better!
- Message cadence