The Psychology of SMS: How Consumer Behavior Shapes Text Message Marketing

The Psychology of SMS: How Consumer Behavior Shapes Text Message Marketing

People need some kind of gratification to survive emotionally, which is why texting is so common. When we are lacking in emotional gratification from our jobs, relationships, or hobbies, we must look elsewhere for a fix. So, we move on to the online world. Every successful interaction, whether it be a text message reply, a like, a comment, or a share, releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter linked to motivation and reward.

Dopamine controls our behaviour and actively motivates us to seek pleasure. Dopamine is the principal chemical involved in addiction. An opioid neurotransmitter that collaborates with dopamine to give us a sense of satisfaction is what rewards us. When the desire for gratification is satiated, we stop looking for it.

Dopamine also stimulates our curiosity. We simply can’t resist opening an SMS because text messages are frequently associated with rewards. SMS gateway is so successful because of this.

Dopamine stimulates our curiosity. We simply can’t resist opening an SMS because text messages are frequently associated with rewards.

Therefore, marketers can significantly benefit from mobile marketing platforms if they are successful in arousing interest or stirring up desire.

It is therefore easy to understand why the open rate is so high when you consider the addictive nature and dopamine release of opening an SMS.

Why the human brain prefers quick-form communications

  • Shorter attention spans

Microsoft claims that the current human attention span is only eight seconds, which is less time than a goldfish. Attention spans are probably getting even shorter as a result of our reliance on multitasking smartphones, the ubiquitous nature of data and Wi-Fi, and our frequent use of instant messaging apps.

Consider this: Generation Z and the Millennial generation are born into a world that is almost entirely online. We’ve developed a taste for one- or two-second consumable content, whether it be through texting or short-form story content on social media.

Even a cursory online search can help you find relevant information on the subject of your curiosity right away. However, 53% of visitors leave a website if it takes longer than three seconds to load. Every second matters.

Text messages don’t require much concentration.

This is where SMS comes into play; in fact, it can be argued that the human brain is wired to prefer SMS communications because a standard text can be read and processed in as little as three seconds, which is significantly less time than most people are willing to wait for a page to load.

Our interest is piqued by the text notification and preview itself, so we open the message and skim it. Because we can respond to texts whenever it’s convenient for us, texting is also better suited to our contemporary lifestyles.

In addition, SMS encourages prompt back-and-forth messaging and permits amusing emojis that give each message personality. This makes SMS more structured like an in-person conversation. On the other hand, a medium like email is more frequently connected to work and can feel more formal in tone and structure.

  • Reciprocity: Giving to Those Who Give to Us in Return

People frequently feel compelled to repay those who have first given them something. Giving customers gifts consequently has a direct impact on how much they spend with you.

Create unique offers for new subscribers, first-time customers, and loyal customers by donning your gift-giving hat.

How to Apply the Rule of Mutual Benefit in Your SMS Copy 

  • Offer a discount or a free item to new subscribers who have an item in their cart. 
  • Offer a freebie with every new customer’s purchase. It doesn’t need to be expensive. A small gesture of gratitude from you can go a long way towards inspiring a reorder. 
  • Send a useful resource, such as a Spotify playlist or a gift-giving guide. 
  • Provide early access to new releases and exclusive promotions to SMS subscribers.

Pro Tip: Even if the per cent discount is greater than the dollar amount, credits for specific dollar amounts or free items usually perform better than percentage-off discounts.

  • Everything is about association.

People naturally associate positive things with text messages because of the messages they get from their loved ones and friends. People want to feel heard, understood, and recognised, after all.

Because of this, your SMS marketing campaigns must be extremely pertinent to help create the same favourable association with your brand and entice recipients to keep opening your messages to learn what you have to say or what you have to offer.

How to elicit positive feelings?

Facts won’t persuade customers to act, even if you want them to. Although they are important, the limbic brain—which controls emotions and motivations—makes the final decision.

Therefore, if your SMS marketing generates a positive emotional response, they will accept it and keep returning for more. The easiest route to safe, enjoyable, and rewarding experiences is taken by the human brain by default.

In describing what good old SMS can do and how it can be used to its full effect, we’ve covered a lot of ground and psychology. The same as with any tool, there are advantages and disadvantages. The channel’s success is heavily reliant on the time and effort you put into comprehending it, shaping it to meet your desired outcomes, and how well you comprehend how the message conveyed fits in with the lives of your customers.

  1. Make the message stir up feelings.
  2. Share knowledge instead of selling.
  3. Create new habits and strengthen old ones.
  4. Keep to established ideas that are consistent with the brand.
  5. Be mindful of how the message is presented.
  6. Consider the customer’s long-term value as opposed to quick cash.

Final Words

There’s more than just text. With consumers having the option of seamlessly interacting with brands over a variety of channels, including WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and MMS, the rise of omnichannel messaging also contributes to SMS’s continued appeal.