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7 Sure-Fire Ways to Build Your SMS Opt-in List

4 mins

Are you ready to launch your first SMS marketing campaign? Maybe you’ve dabbled in SMS marketing before, but haven’t had the engagement you’d hoped for? One of the best ways to ensure your SMS marketing campaign is successful is to actively collect mobile numbers from your customers and potential customers to build your SMS opt-in list.

The bigger the list, the more people you reach with your offers, promotions and discounts, ultimately leading to a successful SMS marketing campaign. We dive into the basics of an SMS opt-in list, and 7 sure-fire ways to collect mobile numbers to build it so you can set up, launch and watch your SMS marketing campaign perform brilliantly.  


What is an SMS Opt-in List?

Have you ever signed up to SMS communications from your favorite store, or even to receive notifications or updates from your bank or utilities provider? As soon as you hit ‘yes’ and agree to receive SMS communications, you’ve joined their opt-in list. An SMS opt-in list is, in simple terms, a collection of mobile numbers that have been given to you from customers, or potential customers, with their express permission.  

The type of SMS being sent to your opt-in list will also determine the rules and regulations around communicating with them. For example, if you’re sending a transactional SMS (or a non-marketing SMS), you may not need to send the SMS with an opt-out function. In the case of a marketing SMS, you need to ensure you remain compliant by following the SMS marketing laws within the United States.  

So how do you build your SMS opt-in list to ensure your SMS marketing campaign makes the impact you want it to? Keep reading to find out. 


1. Events

You’ve hosted an event for your business before, right? Maybe it’s been a webinar during COVID, a fashion parade or even a cocktail evening. If you haven’t, now’s the time. Hosting an event provides you with the perfect opportunity to build your SMS opt-in list. Simply ask eventgoers to provide their mobile number when they purchase a ticket. This could be online or via the phone. Once you have their mobile number you can send them SMS for event confirmations and reminders and also for post-event communication, such as advertising any future events.  


2. Online forms

Another sure-fire way for you to collect mobile numbers to build your SMS opt-in list is through online forms. In this digital world, 72% of businesses have a website, which is considered one of the necessities for modern businesses. No matter what you sell, whether it’s a product or service, if you have a website, you have the chance to grow your SMS opt-in list via online forms. This could be when someone makes a purchase, or even when they fill out a contact form. Get creative and use your business website to your advantage in order to capture those mobile numbers. 


3. Business advertising

Do you use print advertising or digital advertising to promote your business? There are multiple ways you can collect mobile numbers to build your SMS opt-in list through brochures, billboards, digital advertising banners and more. Simply provide a call to action (CTA) for your audience to complete a transaction (through a website link, QR code or other means) or send an SMS to a SMS number dedicated to your business to opt-in.  


4. In-store marketing campaigns

With vaccination rates continuing to climb across the world, many people are heading back in-store to complete their shopping, with businesses in the beauty, health and hospitality industries starting to recoup lost revenue due to lockdowns over the past two years. This provides your business with the perfect opportunity to run in-store marketing campaigns to grow your SMS opt-in list. Display print advertising around your store with QR codes so your audience can easily apply for a loyalty card, submit a competition entry or more. Whatever in-store marketing campaign you plan to run, make sure you have a way to collect mobile numbers.  


5. Contests and competitions

Running contests and competitions not only offers your audience something to engage with and look forward to, but it also promotes sales, positivity and helps improve brand awareness. No matter what industry your business falls in, there’s bound to be an opportunity to run a contest or competition that you can utilize to build your SMS opt-in list. Some effective ways to do this include: 

  • Running a keyword campaign – your audience sends a keyword SMS to a mobile number dedicated to your business to opt-in to the competition for a chance to win. 
  • Submitting an online form – your audience fills in a form to enter a contest or competition that includes providing you with their mobile number to get in contact if they are a winner. 
  • Entering in-store – your audience gives you their mobile number in-store after a purchase has been made or after a service has been given to enter a competition 
  • Sending an email – your audience receives a marketing email from your business and is directed to input their mobile number to enter a competition through a CTA 


6. Social media

Social media can help your business attract customers, get customer feedback and increase engagement with your audience. It can also be the perfect tool for advertising, marketing and promoting your business, or in this case, collecting mobile numbers to build your SMS opt-in list. The latest social media statistics show that there are currently 3.78 billion social media users worldwide in 2021, almost 48% of the current world population. Not only can you post marketing offers, coupons, sales and promotions via your social media channels, but you can also use paid social media advertising to propel your marketing campaigns and reach your audience on a wider scale. Again, it’s all about getting creative with the ways you ask your audience for permission to send SMS to their mobile numbers.  


7. Customer sales or support calls

Building your SMS opt-in list for your next SMS marketing campaign can be as simple as asking a customer or potential customer via the phone, or via online chat, for their mobile number. Someone may be calling your business to enquire for a product and/or service, or they may be requesting support. No matter the reason, they’ve made the effort to reach out to you, making it easier than ever for you to ask them for their mobile number.  


Built Your SMS Opt-in List? Start Sending!

The more marketing campaigns you run, the more mobile numbers you’ll collect to add to your SMS opt-in list. It will continue to grow alongside your business, and you’ll be able to dive deeper into your list for more targeted SMS marketing campaigns. As soon as you’re happy with your SMS opt-in list, you can start setting up and sending your SMS marketing campaigns. Create your Notifyre account, upload your contacts and start sending.  

SMS Solutions
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