Using Loyalty Text Messages to Retain Customers

Among consumers, up to 75% would actively engage with loyalty programs if the rewards were accessible on mobile. Learn how text-based loyalty programs help foster and nurture your most loyal relationships.

How Does a Text-Based Loyalty Program Work?

Loyalty programs are proven to work wonders for customer retention marketing among all industries. The LTV of a loyal customer is 4x higher than an average customer. Loyal customers provide referrals and buy more over time. These programs work by encouraging current customers to make a purchase and rewarding them when they reach a specific purchase power.

For example, fashion retailer, Express, reward loyal customers with cash to use on future purchases once they spend a specific dollar amount. On the other hand, Starbucks rewards points on every purchase that can later be turned into discounts for future purchases or even store merchandise.

SMS or text-based programs are a more cost-effective solution than others. That’s because individuals already own a mobile phone and are already used to texting. The only difference is that loyal customers would have to sign up for the program in-store or online by using their mobile numbers.

This tactic is used by small businesses and large for loyalty-based programs including brands you know such as Home Depot and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory. Once customers sign-up to receive text messages for your business, then you can send them special discounts, current business news, or any other relevant information, including their rewards for making a purchase. Reward-based programs are proven to encourage customers to make new purchases. For this reason, return customers tend to spend around ten times the value of their initial purchase.

Starting a Text Message Loyalty Program

Loyalty text message programs are easy to manage once you have started the conversation. For this reason, it is important to start with good branding. The following tips will help you set up and operate your SMS program while maintaining a professional appearance throughout all your communications.
  1. Choose a Catchy Name

    On average, adults in the U.S. send and receive approximately 32 text messages per day. For this reason, the name you choose for your program must help you stand out among other text messages.

    A catchy name that is easy to remember helps you stand out from your competitors and is key in creating a successful loyalty text message program. e.l.f. Cosmetics is a good example. Their program name is Beauty Squad. A text-based loyalty program works best with the tone of your brand in messaging.

  2. Establish a Rewards Earning System

    Once you have a catchy, brand-appropriate name for your program, it’s time to decide how your customers will earn rewards and what these rewards will be.

    With text messages, it’s easy to set up keywords that customers can text to your program number to claim a reward. For example, once a customer has made a specific number of purchases, they can text a particular keyword to claim a reward like a discount code or even a free product for their next purchase.

    In Coors Light’s most recent effort to improve loyalty, they’ve approached Valentines Day with puppies as rewards. For the majority of February 2020, they provided reimbursement up to $100 in adoption fees for 1,000 eligible dogs as an olive branch from their larger campaign targeting women that skip cuffing season and instead, drink a beer at home with their dog. Followers of the brand have been notified to text COORS4K9 to 28130 with a picture of the adoption receipt. Coors Light showcasing just another clever way that texting boosts loyalty and amplifies targeted campaigns.

  3. Upload Existing Contacts

    If you’re starting a new program, but you already have customers who have signed up to receive text communications from your business, then you can upload their mobile numbers into the subscribers tab on Textedly.

    It’s important to note that these should only be customers who have explicitly signed up for text communications. Textedly will approve contact uploads accordingly and only when they come from a verified business email address.

  4. Set Up a Keyword

    Once your program is set up, give customers a keyword that they can text to opt-in or out of the program at any time.

    Remember that the goal of the program is to create a loyal relationship between you and your customers. If you don’t give them the freedom to come and go as they want, they’ll feel trapped into something which will end up hurting or even breaking that relationship instead.

  5. Create User Filters

    Not all customers who sign up for your program will be the same. You can use filters in Textedly to segment your subscribers into groups and hyper-target them accordingly.

    For example, you can choose to only text a special discount code to customers who haven’t made a purchase in a while. This will keep you fresh in their minds and encourage them to come back.

  6. Using Multimedia in Loyalty Texting Campaigns

    Textedly supports MMS (Multimedia Messaging Services). This means you can include photos, videos, or even a PDF file when texting your customers.

    MMS texts create more engaging messages, help to separate you from competitors, and quickly transpire a feeling that more briefly words can’t. MMS has an average conversion rate of 30%, while the conversion rate for SMS averages across industries at 16%.

  7. Compose Text Templates

    Text templates are a great way to save time when composing your text message. Especially if you are sending the same message multiple times a day to different customers.

    You can create different templates under your Textedly account and save them for when you need them. Remember to name your template, so you can identify it quickly when you need to use it.

  8. Enable Auto-Responders

    The auto-responder feature is another excellent tool to save time when managing your loyalty text message program. You can set up autoresponders for thanking a customer for signing up, or if they opt-out saying goodbye and reminding them that they could opt back in whenever they want by texting a specific keyword to a number.

    Another great use for autoresponders is setting up messages weeks, months, or a year after a customer signs up and congratulating them for their anniversary with a special reward.

  9. Engage With Your Customers

    These programs create numerous opportunities for customer engagement; you just have to get creative. For example, if you own a restaurant and are promoting a new dish, have customers text a picture of them trying the dish and reward them for doing so. If you're still stuck on how to get started with your loyalty program, don’t worry. We’ve provided direct examples on loyalty text messages.

Reviewing Loyalty SMS Analytics

Reviewing and tracking the analytics on the loyalty texts that you send is important to ensure you’re reaching your goals.
Textedly offers analytics that provides users real-time data on all text marketing efforts. This includes user history, performance metrics like open rates, subscribers timestamps, and more.

Loyalty SMS Program Benefits

Regardless of the industry that you are in, text message marketing and loyalty programs are beneficial to any business. Some of these benefits include:
  • Retaining existing customers: A text-based loyalty program is a great tool to keep existing customers and turn them into loyal ones.
  • Creating brand advocates: Customers who are loyal to your brand are more likely to advocate for it and refer you to other potential customers.
  • Building stronger personal relationships: Showing customers that you value their loyalty is proven to build stronger relationships between a customer and the business. This lowers the chances of consumers switching to a competitor who might value their business more.
  • Increasing customer lifetime value: A small 5 percent increase in customer retention can increase your business profits by as much as 85 percent. That’s because returning customers are likely to spend, on average, ten times more than new customers. Hence, their Customer Lifetime Value, which is their net profit attributed to your overall relationship with a said customer is higher.

SMS Loyalty Text Message Examples

There are different types of texts that you can send customers when they are part of your loyalty program. Adjust for your company’s branding and products to any of the loyalty text examples that apply:
(855) 397-6679

Pssssst, VIP!

Want to try our new California club sandwich before anyone else?

Just head to checkout and show this text to cashier at your next visit.

Text STOP to end

The exclusive access text:
“As a thank you to our VIPs, we’re giving you exclusive access to our brand new latte. Just show this text to your barista to try it.”
(855) 397-6679

Can you believe it? You've been a VIP with us for one year!

Use promo code ANNIVERSARY20 at checkout for 20% of your next purchase.

Text STOP to end

The congratulations on your purchase text:
“Congratulations on making your 10th purchase with us! As a thank-you, here is a 10% coupon code for your next purchase.” 

The milestone text:
 “Happy 6 month anniversary with us. Let’s celebrate! Here’s a free pastry item with your next coffee purchase.”

(855) 397-6679

Want to win front-row tickets to Taylor Swift concert?

just reply TAYSWIFT2020 to be automaticaly entered!

Text STOP to end!

The follow-up text:
“As a premium subscriber, we would love to hear about your latest experience. Send us your feedback and we’ll send you a special offer!” 

The contest text:
 “Win a two-day pass and VIP tickets to a Taylor Swift performance near you. Real fans only! Reply TAYSWIFT2020.”

(855) 397-6679

Happy Birthday Richard!

 Thank you for being a loyal ANTHRO shopper. Enjoy 15% OFF for your next purchase. Valid for the next 15 days.

Text STOP to end

The Birthday Text:
“Happy Birthday {NAME}. Thank you for being a loyal ANTHRO shopper. Enjoy 15% OFF for your next purchase. Valid for the next 15 days.”

Special Access to Products/Services:
“Sneak peek sale to our VIPS. For the next 24hours only, our members get access to our latest collection... before everyone else.”

Start Sending Loyalty Text Messages Using Textedly

Loyal customers are five times more likely to repurchase, five times more likely to forgive, four times more likely to refer you to a new customer, and seven times more likely to try a new offering.

By simply opening the conversation to a channel that your customers are already used to, like text messaging, you are more likely to create new relationships and nurture current ones. Start using Textedly to set up your own loyalty texting program today.