SMS in Your Marketing

Updated
Marketing continues to move through new platforms going to the places their customers are at. At least, that's how marketing should be working. When email opened up our worlds our marketing tactics moved from snail mail or radio to email marketing. Then social media came into play and again we moved to Instagram, Facebook, or even TikTok. Once again,  we transition to the next platform to make sure we're meeting our customers where they're at and serving them through text messages. Yes, SMS messaging is the latest and greatest in marketing and could be your next marketing strategy.

How it works

When your students create a Union account we ask for the phone number. This isn't just so you can call them in case something goes wrong but so you can use it to market to your audience. Through our email integration software, Customer.io, you can connect another app, Twilio, to send SMS messages within your sales funnels or as a one-time newsletter. By messaging your students right to their phones, you're sure to be seen by your students, but be careful, while emails are easy to ignore text messages are not, too many SMS messages could lead to an unsubscribe leaving you without a way to reach that student when you have big promotions or announcements. 

Types of SMS Messages

Just like email, you can choose to use SMS messaging in a variety of ways. Big announcements like annual sales or new offerings are great to share through a broadcast SMS (a one-time newsletter). This content isn't evergreen and has an end date so getting the message out there as quickly as possible with a link to a landing page to make a purchase is the goal behind this method.

On the other hand, you can choose to add SMS messages to your drip campaigns. With this strategy letting students know when their trial of a subscription is ending and a notification that their regular priced subscription kicks in, in a few days is a great message to share. You could also send a SMS message to students with one class remaining in a package and provide a link for them to purchase more. Or let subscribers know when you've released a new program that's included in their subscription.

SMS messaging is a way for you to share short and sweet updates with your community either to make a sale or to increase retention. Just like with email marketing it's important to not overdo it with SMS messaging so that you keep your subscribers and are able to reach them when it really matters (like that big 48-hour sale you're planning for next month.)

Getting Setup

If you currently have a Customer.io account that's connected to Union you can easily integrate with Twilio using this helpdesk article. From there, this tutorial video will show you how to set up your SMS messages as a broadcast and a campaign so you can start reaching your audience where they're at. If you're not connected to Customer.io yet but want to learn more just reach out to [email protected] and they'll get you taken care of.

SMS marketing is just one more way to meet your customers where they're at and provide the utmost value to them, whether that's making sure they know all the things they have access to as a subscriber or giving them amazing deals on your classes. Experiment with SMS messaging in your marketing strategy and see what it does for you!


Katie Leigh is a Marketing Strategist for small businesses. She helps Orgs simplify their marketing, connect with their audience, and create work-life balance. Download her free guide to work-life balance here