Another Brilliant Idea

Should You Be Using Text Messaging Techniques To Increase Sales

Another Brilliant Idea, Inc., is a certified small and women-owned boutique marketing firm.

Host: Michelle Thames

Podcast: Social Media Decoded


Hello everyone and welcome back to the social media decoded podcast, the number one podcast to help you understand social media better to utilize it to grow your business online. And today I am so excited because we have a special guest, we have Mary Barnett here and we are going to be talking all about text messaging you guys and this is something that we have not discussed here on this podcast yet. 

So I’m so excited to get into today’s episode. Welcome mary, how are you doing today? I’m great. Thank you so much for having me on your show. This is so exciting. Yes. Can you tell our listeners a little bit more about you because I know we talked and you have some really heavy industry experience.

So can you let us know just a little bit more about you? Of course, thank you for asking. So I’m Mary Barnett. They actually call me “MobileMary” as I basically help you make money from your mobile phone and I’m all about everything mobile. Um, I’ve been in business for 33 years and my joke is that I’m only 34 years old. I was a go getter right out of the, out of the bed. But we started in marketing again in 1988 we’ve done traditional marketing for the 1st 20 years of our business and then in 2007 the year the iPhone came out. 

We’re working with Kawasaki Motors and um, we were doing trade shows and um, lots of different marketing events and things and I remember after one of the dealer meetings um, I’ll be honest with you, there might have been a few drinks involved were kind of downloading right from the event and, and the marketing director was complaining that the, that the dealers were whining to her about not getting enough business and she kept saying, gosh, you know, they we never can do enough for them all they want and like, well they do sell your product right? 

And like I said, I was being a little sassy who had a couple of couple drinks and I said, well what do you do for them? Like seriously? And so she was like, well our agencies do all the things, right, we do billboards and we do direct mail and we do this new medium called email and like, oh you email, I said, well aren’t your customers literally mobile? Like aren’t they on their motorcycles, driving around? 

Like do they wait wait by their mailbox to get their mail? Like do they go, you know, they might see that billboard as they drive by fast but like how are you really capturing her? So I started asking all these questions and they’re like, well what do you have in mind? I said, well, you know, I happen to be reading this little industry rag about mobile marketing, it’s literally a way to capture a customers phone number and then send the messages on their mobile device. And, and they’re like, what I’m like, yeah, I know like everybody has a flip phone right in their pockets. 

Some people have smartphones and just iphone just came out. I said, but you should do that. Like I was like so excited about it and they’re like, well, okay, like can you convince our agencies to do that? I’m like, sure. So it basically took two years long story short to basically keep coming back because the agency reasonable, you can’t do this and you can’t do this. 

I’m like, yes we can, yes we can. So I call my, you know, engineering like okay now we need to do this, right? So we built this amazing software and in the summer of 2009 the green light to win campaign actually drove over 93,000 93,000 new customers, their dealerships across the country. I was like, what I mean? Even though we built it and like we were doing it right. I was like shocked. I’ve never had that kind of a response from any marketing campaign I’ve ever done in 20 years. 

So we went all in on mobile and the rest is history. So we basically, I mean, I know we’re talking about this, but that’s kind of how we started in that until we branded Brilliant Mobile. And um, it’s phenomenal. And I just get super excited because it’s so simple. Yes, it can be so simple. So you guys, I am so excited to talk to Mary today because she is an O. G. In this game. As you heard her say 33 years. 

So this is experience talking not just you know out the blue doing this. Starting this yesterday mary has experienced. So I need you all to take out your pens and note pads because as we all know the gems get dropped on social media decoded and I only interview the top social media marketing experts that there are so I’m so excited to get into today’s episode Mary. So let’s let’s

let’s get into it. So what is text message marketing? Because our listeners may not know what text message marketing is and it seems to have grown in popularity lately. 

Why is that? So what is text message marketing and why do you think it has grown in popularity lately? Of course of course. So text market market is basically think about email marketing right? You’re putting it out there asking people to subscribe to your newsletter and then you send them a newsletter, right? It’s just you’re capturing their information so you can send them more information. 

Well sadly the email marketing communication community never really set up any kind of spam type filters. They just kind of put it out there and so people get so much email, they hardly ever open them anymore. So the cool thing about text marketing, the F. D. F. C. C. Actually set up a can the can spam act. So you can’t legally buy a list of mobile numbers so to to really get into mobile marketing, you actually have to provide something of value to your audience in exchange for them opting into your list. So these are people who know like and trust you enough to opt in to your keyword, right? If you, I don’t know if you’ve ever like opted in to get a free frozen yogurt or a free slice of pizza or something like most people use it for that. 

But once people opt in then you have permission to send them messages. And I always say that with great responsibility with great power comes great responsibility, right? You always get that that’s saying wrong, but like you’ve now captured something that’s so personal to someone, right?

You don’t leave the house without your phone, your wallet and your keys so that mobile devices a very personal item and so you need to respect it. So when we um we treat that very um respectively, I’m not getting the right word but I’m saying is so mobile marketing is basically just a way to connect instantly and on demand with your customers for things that they want from you. So it’s awesome. So, and it’s also really short and sweet similar to a tweet you’re sending them something that they will value and it might be something like a sale or a special or a deal, right? 

So it can be very timely but could also be something that we talked about a little bit about for um coaches and things. It can be an accountability tool. Um, something that reminds people like, hey, I just sent this really cool email. You need to check it out or hey, my courses starting, um, sign up here before you know with this coupon, before the spaces get filled up or this is your weekly accountability message, click here to tell me what you’ve accomplished this week. 

So there’s lots of different things you can do because it’s something that people instantly get 94% instant read rate. And I think that’s why to your question, why is it so popular? I think there’s so much noise out there. You know, we have so much coming at us from every angle. 

There’s almost too much content. So when you get a simple message that pops up instantly on your phone, you don’t have to have a nap. You don’t have to be on any social media, right? It just comes to you because if you text anyone in your life, your boyfriend, your husband, your child to come down for dinner, you’re going to get that text message. Right? And so again, it’s something that people value and they, and they protect. 

Yeah. And it’s right in their hands, right? You want to send them the message that’s right in their hands. I’m not gonna lie. I’m on Gary. I think I’m on Gary V’s text list and he sends like motivational messages and things, but also to sign up for his programs and things like that. So so many ways that you can use it and it doesn’t have to be hard. I’m so glad that you said that. 

And yes, I do think that it is more popular because we do have our phones in our hands and it is a really quick way to get in front of people and you don’t have to just have, you know, a brick and mortar business. You like she said, you can be a coach if you want to have accountability, say send positive messages in the morning.

Hey, don’t forget to sign up for my email list. Hey, I just send a new podcast episode mary, I think I’m gonna sign up for this text message marketing. So we’re gonna talk more, We’re gonna talk more about that. You brought up something that somebody actually in the very beginning people are asking me, you know, can we charge her text? Because back in the day before there was unlimited messaging right? 

That people used to have to like, you only got 200 text messages a month or something ridiculous, right? And people are getting these outlandish text because their child was texting with all their friends in the other night was crazy. Well now it’s unlimited. So it doesn’t matter. But um, I’ve had like vitamin stores asked me, hey, can we charge like to send a daily reminder to take their vitamins, I’m like, yes, I mean if you, if somebody wants to pay five bucks a month to do something, they can actually set on their own phone, right? Consider a reminder on your phone. 

But people will, they’ll be like yes just tell me what to do. They really love that. So yes. Just another. Yes. No I love that. And I mean who would’ve thought right that these type of things would be available for your business? So whatever type of business that you have, I’m pretty sure that text message marketing could work for you.

Um So I want to talk about effectiveness because that’s important in business. So how can businesses effectively use text message marketing in their social media strategy Because I’ve seen some people put their text message in their bio and their email marketing.

So I want to bring it back to like how they can even though it’s outside of like technically social media markets all social media marketing, but how can they use it effectively? Yes. Well I’m glad you brought that up because I think it’s really important to use social media to promote your mobile. I call the mobile V. I. P. Program usually or a mobile club or whatever you want to say that, but you’re something that I think we all know but we don’t really know is that we don’t own social media, right? 

Mark owns facebook and instagram right? And the rest of the world probably by now um other people own, you know all the different social medias and if they go down or if they kick you off even if it’s no fault of your own. You know there’s things that happen maybe you said your facebook ad something happened, you get hacked or something and you you get booted off.

What are you gonna do? Like if you have no other way of communicating with your customers. I have heard people say oh I have facebook, I don’t even need a website. I’m like yikes like you have to have something that you can call your own. And so it’s always been like collect an email list right? But at the same time collect the mobilized like with our software we instantly obviously collect the mobile number. That’s the very first thing. But then we say hey if we could like to personalize your messages and send you goodies by email, you know text back your name and your email address and then boom not only is in our software but we integrate with other popular Softwares like um constant contact, infusion soft, male chimp, so it automatically dumps into that software as well. 

So you have that list because like I said when things go down I think it was when was it that it just went on facebook and instagram went down for like five hours and people lost their minds was that oh my God people were seriously, I was laughing because it was like people were texting me like what do I do, what do I do? I’m like, you have a list. Just send out a message. It says we’re still open. You know social might have gone down but our store is still open. Like here’s a link to our website, right? I’m like keep calm and text. Right? So that I mean that actually was a blessing to me because I spent that time at five hours sending emails out saying hey, if you still haven’t signed up, maybe this will convince you type thing. Um But we had our customers who like, okay so I’ll give you an example. 

So we have one um chain of Mexican food restaurants. We start with them were about seven restaurants and now they’re up to like think 22 23 excuse me. But they have built a list. I think we’ve worked with them for like seven years and their first four years they built up a list of like 76,000 customers and they were segmented by store. So as they grew, we helped them segment like their customers that liked their orange store versus their Anaheim store versus their riverside store. Right? And so when they were opening a new store, they, we would to use what we call geo fencing to actually send a message out in a 10 mile radius of the new location saying, hey if you opt into our new store, um list, we’ll send you, we’ll give you a free burrito on opening day.

And so boom. I mean it’s just blossomed, right? And so during the pandemic, they didn’t lose a beat. They actually grew during the pandemic because they were able to tell people, hey, we’re open, we’re clean and we deliver. And so while other restaurants were scrambling lycopene, God, how many people know that we’re still open? And you know, it was like we got you baby, we got you. So I think that’s something that is important to use your social media kind of going back to the original question is use your social media to get people off social media. Even thoughI know it sounds counterintuitive, you’re basically saying, hey, here’s my ethical bribe, right? 

My freebie, my offer, my whatever opt in to receive it so I can continue these conversations offline like a human, right? Human to human. And it can be automated, but it’s important that we keep our humanness in with any of our communications, not just social obviously, but text as well. No, I’m so glad you said that because I always say let’s get the people off social media, let’s get them off your lead magnets have to lead to somewhere. 

So everything you said was spot on. I always, I mean, and they, everyone on the social media decoded listener part, they know that we always say let’s get them off social media because we’re right. I even did a whole episode about the shutdown and what you should do and definitely having a text message system is, is beneficial. Having an email marketing system is beneficial because again, sometimes there may be glitches and things may go down, but you want to have a backup plan to your backup plan. 

So that’s important. Um I think people don’t think about is an exit strategy. So think about it. If you have a list of 5000 emails and 10,000 text numbers and you go to sell your business, how much more valuable is it than someone who says, oh yeah, here’s my list of customers, right? Here’s my, here’s my clients, but here’s all my customers, right. It’s like, it’s it’s a way that they can hit the ground running and start making money when they buy your business. So it’s just, it’s an asset for your business. And on the opposite side, I also consider it business insurance.

Because if social goes down and you have this list, it’s like an insurance policy of knowing that you can still get a hold of your customers, which is so important and they want to hear from you. I think sometimes as business owners, we think, oh they don’t want to hear from me. 

Like I’m always blathering at them, like sending them emails, bye, bye, bye. Well one obviously we need to balance that right with value, right? It’s not always buy buy buy, but people, if they’re on your list is because they again know like, and trust you and they want, they love your makeup or they love your fashion designer, they love your home improvement ideas or whatever it is and it’s okay. And if they don’t want to hear them, they’re locked out. Right? So I think it’s, I think people need to like let go of that fear and just, you know, put out their goodness, take that bushel the light off the bushes.

What is it? Yeah, I don’t know. I’m gonna say, yeah, I don’t know that, that, that term, but we can look it up. I definitely, definitely. But I want to talk about to some dudes and don’t of text message marketing because let’s be honest, there are some things that we see just even online, we’re like, oh, that probably shouldn’t have been posted. 

So when it comes to text messages, what are some dudes and don’t that businesses should just, you know, stay aware of when they are, you know, creating their campaigns and sending out messages. Yes. Well, I actually have a report on the 10 Deuce and don’t, so I’ll have to, I think I remember how to give that, I’ll definitely do that. Um, and it says do this, don’t do that type of thing. Um, but one simple rule and again, talking about simple, um, like we’ve also done bots for people where you like, we used the software called Many Chat and we help people with bots and it connects to our software so they can send out text as well.

But there are so many rules facebook put so many rules like you can’t talk to someone unless they talk to you within 24 hours and you can’t do this and you can’t do this. I’m like, oh my gosh, text messaging is so much more simple. You know, no one’s the boss of you like do what you want as long as you stay away from the shaft. And this is an acronym that I’ll tell you. So shaft is basically a rule the FCC has that you don’t send out anything as is sex. H. Is hate. Um, A is alcohol, T. F. Is firearms and T. Is tobacco. So you can’t send out anything by text with those five subjects, which is probably a good idea anyways. Right? Um, I get sent all the time messages. 

Can you help me with my CBD business? And technically still federally that is still considered a tobacco product. So we can’t help promote CBD unfortunately yet, but because I know I had a lot of health benefits. Um, but anyways, but that’s pretty much the only rules and then our software also helps keep you within the parameters because you’re not supposed to text outside of waking hours. So based on your, your time zone, you’re supposed to not send messages before 7 a.m. Or after 9 p.m. So Nobody wants to get a text about a frozen yogurt special at 11 PM at night, come on. Right. So the software saved you from that. 

But again, it’s, it’s a lot of common sense is the dues and don’t associate with text marketing, just send something that you would want to receive or would want your mother to receive. Oh, I absolutely love that you said that and that goes with all things that you post on social media. If you wouldn’t want your mother to receive it, it probably shouldn’t go on your page. So I love everything that you said. I call it, the grandmother rule. Like if your grandmother would be like, oh my gosh, like or your great grand your grandchildren rule. I I do it on both sides when I do these talks about social media, I said if you, if you project because I talk a lot to um kids, I have a talk called how to use social media, get into the college or career of your dreams. And I’m like, I’m like fast forward 50 years. You’re a grandma that you’ve got a big apron on your mixing the cookies on christmas morning, Your grandchild runs in and their phone who now has a holographic image on it, right? Because that’s where it’s gonna go right and up pops a hologram hologram of you in a tube top with a red solo cup, you know, you know doing some kind of you know funky sign with your hand. I said then they say grandma is this you that might not be something you should post now because someday it’s gonna haunt you, so keep that in mind. 

So yes, the same. Grand. Now I want to talk about some overhead costs and like costs and things because these are things of course that business owners think about. So this text message marketing reduce overhead costs versus other forms of marketing, like you know traditional marketing, print marketing, those types of things. Oh my gosh, yes, so it’s so affordable, it’s crazy. So um you’re basically paying pennies for for a text message in the scheme of things. So there’s of course the access to a platform cost, right?

That’s a monthly subscription. But most subscriptions have plans like ours um that comes with so many text credits per month And then you can of course up that based on your usage. So we have customers who started off paying $47 a month. It comes with 500 outgoing text message, which is just fine when you’re starting out, we’d hate for you to pay for something you’re not using right? And then as your list grows it’s actually a good problem You have to buy more text to be able to send them out. So you can, you know, you might go up to 97 and 1 47. So it’s an incremental thing and you only Get you only get charged for what you use right? 

So now we have customers like that Mexican restaurant that I told you about, they now pay a $6,000 a month because they’re making like $50,000 a month off of the text that they send out. So in relation to what they’re spending to what they’re making, that margin is really small, so it’s totally worth it. So you know again we have so many customers who just start off on the lowest programs and they say that because there might just be for accountability, so $47 a month is the only thing they pay because that’s that’s what they’re using it for.

But for people who are wanting to build that list, grow their influence um markets to more people if they have a commerce brand or um something that they you know more um commodity based um they want to grow it and they’re willing to spend spend that. So um so is that, did I answer your question? Oh absolutely and I just want to let the listeners know running a business there’s going to always be some cost, there’s gonna be always some costs to marketing. So I think that text message marketing is a more affordable option right? If you really want to get your message out, but you do also have to remember and understand that you do still have to build this community, It’s not like, oh I’m just gonna get all these people and they’re gonna be on my text message list. 

You still have to of course build that up. But I do think that it’s a very affordable option and very easy to do because again, other marketing efforts like print marketing or radio or things like that, it’s very expensive. So you just have to really think about what type of marketing that you know, you want to integrate into your strategy. But this has been such a great conversation and I am so excited that we let the people know about text message marketing because you have so much experience. Yeah, it was actually, somebody just brought that up the other day too. As you mentioned print, you know print like ads and direct mail. Like if you sent one postcard, the postage on that is now 50 cents. Like, wow. And that’s getting to one person and you don’t even know if they’re hopefully the postcard, they’ll read it as they’re throwing it away, right? But you know, if you send out a letter right, 50 cents, like, oh my God, so with the text message, you’re paying pennies, I mean our lowest packages like three cents. So it’s so affordable for people. Um and as I mentioned to you offline, we’re actually helping other agencies use our software to start a subscription based service for their clients. 

So they can actually make money using our software. So we’re launching a mobile marketing mastery course next month where we’re taking a very small cohort of people who are interested in doing this. But if you’re interested in the show notes will be a link to learn more about that because it’s something that really saved our business. We’ve been in business for so long and um once we started a subscription based service um we can actually take a vacation and know that our money is coming in because we’ve set up our clients right?

We treat them, we do great customer service, but the money comes in every single month. So  think that’s beneficial if any of your listeners are interested in that, I’d love to talk to them more about it. Yes, no, will definitely leave that information in the show notes. You guys. This will be I think an amazing opportunity if you’re looking for other avenues of marketing to reach different audiences, definitely checking out. Of course all the information will be down in the show notes, but mary let them know where can they find you on social media. They may want to follow you on instagram or twitter or wherever you are on the social uh social media networks and also um the website, we want to know about how we can get connected with your app and things like that. 

So make sure you let us know about the website. It’ll all be in the show notes as well. Oh sure sure. So um yeah, so I’m “MobileMary” and so everywhere I’m “MobileMary”, in fact on facebook though, I think it’s under the mobile mary because mary was taken on that was on on twitter, but I’m “MobileMary”. Right? And so and my website is Another Brilliant Idea, which is my corporate name because everyone needs another brilliant idea. Right? And so that’s that’s why our software is called Brilliant Mobile or brilliant Mobile messaging, because everything we do is brilliant, right? We want to help people to be brilliant in their in their marketing. So um I would love it. In fact, if you go to Another Brilliant Idea, there’s a little button that says, calculate um calculate your smS, you can literally find out if if text marketing would actually make you money so click on it, you just fill out a couple of questions and it’ll give you how much money you can make every month using text marketing called Sms calculator, that’s what it’s called. Another Brilliant Idea. Sms calculator. Oh, that is so awesome. 

Make sure you guys check that out all of the information will be in the show notes. I want to thank you so much Mary for today’s episode. This has been so great. I hope you all took some amazing notes because this was 33 years of experience that we just talked about. So I hope that you guys enjoyed this episode. Thank you Mary so much for coming on today and I want to thank you all so much for tuning into today’s episode. Thank you so much for being a listener of the social media decoded podcast. Thank you so much for tuning into today’s episode. I hope that you’ve got some gems. If you got some gems make sure to tag me on instagram at Michele L. Thanks and share those gyms with me. I cannot wait to talk to you all in the next one piece. 

Thank you so much for being a listener of the social media decoded podcast. Thank you so much for tuning into today’s episode. I hope that you got some gems. If you got some gems, make sure to tag me on instagram at Michele L. Thanks and share those gems with me. I cannot wait to talk to you all in the next peace. Mhm