Getting into SMS Marketing (US)

SuperStroker

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Looking for some feedback from people who have experience with SMS marketing. Here's some info I have put together:

Sending Numbers
Short Code:
Costs $500-$1,500 per month but guarantees the highest throughput as long as you are sending in the parameters you stated for the application. Can take a few months to get approved for a short code. Probably not the best way to go for starting out. Can send thousands of messages per second.

Verified Toll-free:
No monthly cost, but sometimes a higher initial cost. Volume is restricted but still far greater than a standard number. This is probably a good compromise as a starting point. Send 20-50 per second.

Standard Number + Country Code
The most basic approach, which is subject to blocks...although it is easy to get large amounts of these numbers relatively cheap, most gateways will limit your send rate to 1-5 per second.

Method of Sending
Gateway Service
Something like twilio, which acts as the gateway between your sending app and the cell network. They charge a CPM rate for sent messages as well as responses. The CPM rate is around $8, which means if you wanted to bang off 100K SMS messages you'd be paying $800.

Hardware Gateway
There are branded products like SMSEagle as well as chinese options from aliexpress which allow you to place multiple SIM cards into a unit to send as though you are a normal cell user. Although it is unlikely to have the volume of a hosted gateway, it is cheaper once you factor in the up-front cost. The drawbacks here are the hidden limitations on how much you can actually send in this manner. Even "unlimited" SMS plans have hidden limits on both total amount sent as well as rate per second.

Ways to promote
Direct response
In this way you would send SMS messages with a link or some kind of message asking them to text a keyword in response if they would like a link, then the link takes them to your offer page.

Call Center
Use SMS messages to drive calls to a call center. Benefit here is that URLs tend to get your SMS numbers blocked, but texting a phone number is less likely to have that effect.


So who can offer some more insights here? Any tips? What networks do you work with and what methods work for you?
 

Mastey577

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The major thing is having high quality leads, when you have that covered it doesn't matter if you're sending 200 SMS per day using Google Voice you'll get returns.

So with your detailed strategy plus high quality leads success is almost inevitable as the pitch us also something to consider so your phone number or method doesn't get tagged as spam same as cold emails especially when you have links in your messages.

My advice is whatever guarantee you have verify your leads using social media like WhatsApp or Telegram then go full blast.

All the best
 

SuperStroker

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SMS Gateways with API (CPM based on 100K sent)
Twilio ($8 cpm)
Bandwidth.com ($4-$6 CPM)
MessageBird ($6 cpm)
Clicksend ($12.50 cpm)
BulkSMS ( $32 cpm)

As far as I know, bandwidth.com is the only gateway that offers the most direct access to the cell networks, so they have to cheapest rates. Twilio drops to $5.30 CPM for messages sent above 5 million messages within a month, and to $3.20 CPM after 20M...but these only apply to those volume tiers, which means the first 5M messages will always cost you $8 CPM so it's not a real volume discount.

Also, it's unrealistic to expedct multi-millions of messages sent to be a figure we can hit when just starting out, and the other consideration is whether or not you will be charged for incoming texts. Twilio charges about the same for incoming as outgoing, but Bandwidth.com and MessageBird do not charge for incoming SMS.

BulkSMS is in its own world with its high pricing. I don't think it was intended to fulfill its namesake. Clicksend is also priced at more than double most of its competitors and I didn't see anything to justify double the cost.
 

Mastey577

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SMS Gateways with API (CPM based on 100K sent)
Twilio ($8 cpm)
Bandwidth.com ($4-$6 CPM)
MessageBird ($6 cpm)
Clicksend ($12.50 cpm)
BulkSMS ( $32 cpm)

As far as I know, bandwidth.com is the only gateway that offers the most direct access to the cell networks, so they have to cheapest rates. Twilio drops to $5.30 CPM for messages sent above 5 million messages within a month, and to $3.20 CPM after 20M...but these only apply to those volume tiers, which means the first 5M messages will always cost you $8 CPM so it's not a real volume discount.

Also, it's unrealistic to expedct multi-millions of messages sent to be a figure we can hit when just starting out, and the other consideration is whether or not you will be charged for incoming texts. Twilio charges about the same for incoming as outgoing, but Bandwidth.com and MessageBird do not charge for incoming SMS.

BulkSMS is in its own world with its high pricing. I don't think it was intended to fulfill its namesake. Clicksend is also priced at more than double most of its competitors and I didn't see anything to justify double the cost.
Great info man, thanks for the share really appreciate it.
 
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