Text messages are a vital part of any good marketing strategy.

Studies show us that 98% of marketing-related texts are opened—83% of those are opened within 5 minutes of being received.

Those open rates far outpace even the most clever email subject line, so texting should definitely be in your marketing toolkit. Text message marketing is a great way to retain customers by letting them know about promotions, discounts, and special events in the way they clearly like being reached.

With that in mind, let’s look at some things to keep in mind when you’re crafting a text to send to clients.

Write Like a Human

As far as marketing channels go, texting is a pretty intimate one. Write like you’re texting a friend (because, in a way, you are) about what’s happening at your business.

Be Concise

You know that moment when you get a head-scratcher of a text and write back with “?”

Don’t put your customers in that same uncomfortable situation. Make the value of your message straightforward in a way that makes it clear (A) why they should care, and (B) what they should do next.

However, don’t overdo it with “brevity.” Here’s an example of a text that’ll fall flat:

U ready 4 a discount? 2day only!

Don’t save characters at the expense of texting like a professional. It’ll set off “this must be spam” alarm bells. Write in the best conversational tone of your brand, and don’t sacrifice your “voice” for the sake of space.

Discounts

When you send a text, you’re raising your hand and saying, “I’ve got something really important to tell you right now!” In the context of a business-client relationship, this is often a discount or special offer.

Try to give your offer a little context—is it only available to loyal clients…are you celebrating something at your business?

Also, be sure to let them know where the discount is available if you have multiple locations, and how long the offer will be available. Include an expiration date for clarity.

CTAs

Above all, text message marketing success depends on an easy and clear call-to-action (CTA). If you’re giving customers a code to use upon checkout, include it in the text. If you can’t fit it all into one text, rewrite it until you can.

Remember, the action you want your clients to take is the most important part of the text.

Don’t Abuse the Privilege

The warm, fuzzy feelings of connection with a brand that texts can evaporate quickly if you’re blowing your clients’ phones up constantly with texts. Try to limit your messaging outreach to no more than 4–6 times per month.

Time Matters

A big key to sending the right marketing message is knowing when to send it.

Catch clients when they have some down time, as opposed to late at night or during weekdays while they’re at work. Target early evenings and weekends for your outreach efforts.

Remember these guidelines as you craft your upcoming text campaigns, and good luck.