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Getting Started with SMS Marketing For Zoho

SMS marketing can help businesses connect with customers effectively. In this blog, we’ll explore how to use Zoho’s applications like CRM and Campaigns to make your SMS marketing strategy more powerful. We’ll also look into shortcodes, choosing the right SMS gateway, and more. Let’s get started.

Picking the Right SMS Gateway for Your Zoho SMS Marketing

Choosing the right SMS gateway can significantly affect your SMS marketing campaign’s performance. The ideal gateway should offer high reliability, fast message delivery, robust security, and competitive pricing. Here are some items to consider when choosing the right SMS gateway for Zoho:

  • Integration with Zoho: Ensure that the SMS gateway you choose can be easily integrated with Zoho. Zoho supports integration with various popular SMS gateways like Twilio, Clickatell, and Plivo, among others.
  • Reliability and Speed: These are essential factors for your SMS campaigns. Ensure the gateway provider offers high uptime guarantees and speedy message delivery.
  • Coverage: Make sure the gateway covers the geographical regions where your customers are located.
  • Security: Since you’ll be transmitting customer data through the gateway, it’s vital that it provides robust security features to protect this data.
  • Pricing: Pricing models can vary between gateway providers. Make sure you understand the costs involved and that they fit within your budget.
  • Customer Support: Choose a provider that offers reliable customer support. If issues arise, you’ll want to be able to resolve them quickly.
  • Compliance: The provider should adhere to industry regulations to protect you and your customers.

Depending on where you are located, your options may vary. The team over at SmoothMessenger has created a great gateway lookup tool free of charge, SmoothMessenger SMS Gateway Comparison Tool.

Utilizing Zoho CRM or Zoho Campaigns

Your choice of application may depend on your overarching marketing strategy, and may be limited to using either one or both.

Zoho CRM offers a more focused approach to managing your marketing efforts. With numerous extensions available, including ones that enable your sales team to engage with SMS messages directly within the contact record, CRM proves to be an excellent platform for running your SMS marketing. Generally, leveraging the CRM for SMS marketing is particularly beneficial for contacts that are beyond the nurturing phase of engagement.

On the flip side, Zoho Campaigns serves as an ideal choice for lead nurturing. Integrate your email marketing efforts with SMS messages in your workflows. Did your lead click on the email link? A timely SMS follow-up can help seal the deal. Combining these channels within Zoho Campaigns can effectively streamline your lead nurturing process.

Leveraging Shortcodes for High-Volume SMS

For businesses planning to send a high volume of SMS messages, using shortcodes can be incredibly beneficial. Shortcodes are shorter than regular phone numbers (typically 5-6 digits) and are specifically designed for mass messaging. They provide faster delivery rates and are generally easier for customers to remember.

Using Zoho, businesses can easily integrate shortcodes into their SMS marketing campaigns. Here are a few tips for effectively using shortcodes:

  1. Choose the Right Type of Shortcode: There are two types of shortcodes – dedicated and shared. Dedicated shortcodes are exclusive to your business but come with a higher cost. Shared shortcodes are used by multiple businesses and are more cost-effective but carry the risk of being blacklisted if another business misuses them. Evaluate your business needs and budget to choose the right one for you.
  2. Ensure Compliance: Regulatory bodies have rules about how shortcodes can be used, particularly for unsolicited messages. Always obtain prior consent from customers before sending marketing messages via shortcodes. Zoho can help ensure that you’re following all compliance rules in your region.
  3. Make Your Shortcode Memorable: Choose a shortcode that is easy for customers to remember. This is particularly important if you want customers to initiate a conversation or respond to your messages.
  4. Promote Your Shortcode: Make sure your customers know about your shortcode. Promote it across various marketing channels – your website, emails, social media, and more.
  5. Measure and Optimize: Just like with any other aspect of your SMS marketing campaign, track the performance of your shortcode. Use Zoho’s analytics to understand how customers are responding to your shortcode messages and optimize your strategy accordingly.

SMS Marketing Tips

Now that we have covered the basics for getting started with Zoho SMS marketing, let’s touch on a few best practices on the matter.

  • Get Permission: Always secure consent from your customers before sending SMS messages. Consent is not only a legal requirement in many jurisdictions but also a sign of respect for your customers’ privacy. No one likes spam.
  • Use Clear and Concise Messaging: SMS stands for Short Message Service. Your messages should be brief, clear, and direct. Aim to communicate your point in as few words as possible.
  • Include a Call to Action: Every SMS message you send should include a clear call to action. This will guide your customers on what they should do next after reading your message.
  • Personalize Your Messages: Personalization can significantly increase customer engagement. Use your customers’ names and reference their past interactions with your business to make your messages more relevant and impactful.
  • Time Your Messages Right: Timing can significantly influence the effectiveness of your SMS marketing. Be mindful of when your customers are most likely to be available and receptive to your messages.
  • Don’t Overwhelm Your Customers: Avoid sending too many messages to your customers. This could lead to them unsubscribing from your SMS list or even having a negative perception of your brand.
  • Track and Optimize: Use analytics to measure the performance of your SMS marketing campaigns. This data can provide valuable insights to help you refine and improve your strategy.
  • Ensure Compliance: Always follow the rules and regulations set by telecommunication authorities and data protection bodies in your region. Compliance is crucial in maintaining the trust of your customers and avoiding legal complications.
  • Landing Pages Mobile Friendly: Many sites build their landing pages with just the desktop view in mind. These SMS messages will send users to your site on their mobile device, maximize your success by optimizing these pages for mobile.

In conclusion, enhancing customer engagement with SMS marketing via Zoho requires careful planning, choosing the right tools, and following best practices. Whether it’s Zoho CRM for direct interaction with your customers, or Zoho Campaigns for automating your SMS marketing campaigns, both tools offer unique strengths that can boost your marketing strategy.

Billy Bates

Senior Web Developer

Billy is a Wordpress Developer with an eye for design. His knowledge will help our company website and client sites meet their goals. Billy and his young family have just moved to Ashland Oregon, and are looking forward to exploring the area’s amazing beer, wine, and food. He also has a passion for synthesizers and drum machines.

Lucas Sant'Anna


With a background in Operations Research and Data Analysis, Lucas is a Brazilian programmer that likes to get stuff done quickly and reliably. In previous jobs, he implemented industrial job scheduling, fleet management and detailed long-haul route optimization – among other data-driven processes – to reach objectives of increased profit and reduced wasted resources. His goal is to make Zoho fully automated and with more meaningful data for spot-on decisions.