First off, what is it? SMS marketing is intended to send out specials, coupons, promotions, alerts, and more via highly targeted, permission-based, opt-in text messages. At City Hive, we integrated one of the industry's leading SMS marketing services directly into the Merchant Dashboard to streamline the experience. There are three different solutions that we support out of the box, and we'll go into each below.
Before we do that, let's go over how and when we support SMS marketing. Text messages aren't like emails or push notification, they require explicit opt-in permissions to be obtained from each customer, and can't be predicated on purchases. In other words, your customers have to knowingly opt-in to receive SMS marketing messages and it can't be turned on by default.
There are two types of communications that your customers can receive from the City Hive dashboard, transactional and promotional. Transactional requires no opt-in and are not customizable by the consumer. These are things like order notification texts/emails and loyalty program updates.
If you're interested in creating a loyalty program configuration that integrates your in-store customer data from your cloud-based POS, contact our support team.
Promotional texts are any type of text that do not fall within the transactional definition. This means invites to join your loyalty program, download app texts, and anything in between. To start, we would assign your store a phone number that is specific for SMS marketing (it will match your store's area code). Once you have a number assigned, you'll need to start building your customer list. There are a few ways to do this:
- Use an existing SMS list, imported from a third-party service.
- Ask your customers to text "SUBSCRIBE" to your store's SMS phone number to join
- Use an in-store signup form (contact us for details)
We do NOT support using a customer list that has been created by storing phone numbers from your in-store customers without their express consent. An example of this is using your Drizly customer list.
Once you've built your customer list, you can choose from the below solutions that you can begin to utilize immediately:
- Occasional marketing SMS messages. (Special offers, sales, featured products, etc.)
- Raffles - Use a keyword phrase that allows your customers to text your phone number to enter into an online raffle
- Autopilots - Using our autopilot system, you can set automated messages based on purchase/customer behavior
Here's a link to an article that goes over where the strict regulations are coming from and how to be in compliance with them Click Here