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Once the participant’s message is sent, a text message marketing platform automatically logs the phone number and the participant is automatically entered to win a prize for free.
IN THIS ARTICLE:
- Are text-to-win sweepstakes legal?
- What are the requirements to run SMS sweepstakes?
- Why use a text message marketing platform for SMS sweepstakes?
Text Sweepstakes vs Social Media Sweepstakes? The Differences
Text to win sweepstakes are unlike social media sweepstakes and contests because they are run entirely via SMS messaging. While the same sweepstakes rules still apply, some brands find that text message sweepstakes deliver better results than other types of sweepstakes and contests.
SMS contests are permitted just like social media contests except it’s a one-step, easy process to enter.
Unlike social media contests that require you to have a social media profile with the social media platforms where the brand is running the contest, participants can enter through mobile just by sending a text message.
No social media accounts are required for text-to-win sweepstakes or contests. You don’t even need a smartphone to enter since mobile phones don’t require you to download any apps in order to send a text message.
Is It Legal to Run Text Sweepstakes in the United States?
The short answer is ‘Yes.’
All text-to-win sweepstakes are required to follow the same sweepstakes laws that apply to all other legal sweepstakes promotions run by brands in the United States.
To run a text-to-win, brands must also follow all of the text messaging laws including Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) opt-in for SMS rules which says that brands are not permitted to send text messages to consumers without their express written consent.
Brands Need Consumers’ Written Permission to Send Texts and Run Text Message Sweepstakes
Even if you previously obtained the customer’s phone number from a past purchase or you have a long-standing relationship with them, you should know that you are still required to obtain written consent.
The TCPA guidelines also state that a business or nonprofit organization must obtain the expressed written consent prior to sending any text messages to consumers with marketing intent.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) defines express written consent as a written agreement because the caller (you as the sweepstakes sponsor) and the receiver of the SMS messages (your customer).
Don’t Ignore Text Message Marketing Laws or the Legal Penalties Could Be Significant
Not follow the text message laws could result in significant fines (per text) and regulatory action against your business. It’s much easier to ensure compliance if you work with a text sweepstakes company that can provide SMS compliance.
As part of the entry process, a text messaging platform checklist for compliance will ensure that consent is obtained prior to sending any message.
A clear and visible disclosure regarding any text message or data charges must also be included.
What Does a Express Written Consent Sweepstakes Disclosure Include?
Your disclosure must include the following elements:
- The purpose of your campaign (to run a sweepstakes)
- The message frequency for your campaign
- ‘Message and data rates may apply’
- Link to your Terms and Conditions (link to your website)
Don’t forget to include the exact instructions for ‘STOP’ and ‘HELP’ for your text sweepstakes campaign so that participants know how to opt-out of your text messaging marketing campaign or to get help from customer support.
Does TCPA Apply to Transactional Texts?
The key reason why express consent is required for text sweepstakes is because you will send marketing messages. The TCPA doesn’t apply to transactional texts, with no marketing messaging, regarding a customer’s purchase from your brand.
Don’t forget that state and local SMS regulations also apply to your SMS marketing promotion. Hire a professional text sweepstakes administrator to assist you to ensure that you follow all applicable SMS marketing laws.
How Text Sweepstakes Boost Your Sales and Increase Brand Awareness
Here are 5 reasons to run a text sweepstakes.
1. SMS Marketing Has Great Open Rates
The majority of text messages are opened within 3 minutes of receipt. As a result, if you send marketing messages via text, it’s very likely that your customers will open them immediately and engage with them.
Mobile marketing has the potential to reach customers no matter where they are: shopping in-store, at home or on the go. People almost always have their phones with them.
SMS message also provides instant delivery direct to your customer’s mobile notifications. Therefore, you don’t have to wait for customers to log into a social media site in order to view your marketing campaign.
2. Use Text Sweepstakes Surveys to Learn More About Your Core Customers
In addition to using text-to-win sweepstakes to grow their SMS marketing database, many brands use these promotions to gather valuable insight into consumer preferences.
With an SMS sweepstakes or contest, you can still ask participants to complete a short sweepstakes. Some brands opt to send a link to a web entry form via text to collect additional information, such as the participants email address and street address.
For most brands, text to win participants primarily consist of the brand’s core customers. SMS sweepstakes like other types of sweepstakes help to build brand loyalty.
As a result, text to wins are a reliable way to reach your customers and in exchange for their participation, your brand gets valuable information you need to improve your products or services.
If you send quality messages with a personalized touch, and not spammy messages, you can also expect to receive high conversion rates from SMS message marketing.
3. SMS Marketing Nurtures Participants Turning Them Into Customers
SMS is one of the most effective methods for nurturing leads because it’s inexpensive. The bulk of the cost that you will spend is on choose a text marketing subscription and platform to run your sweepstakes.
Even if you don’t get tons of entries on your first sweepstakes, the good news is that you can reach out to those same participants to have them sign up for your next promotion, giving you a reliable source of mobile traffic to use for marketing.
We recommend that restaurants and ecommerce brands take this method a step further and run remarketing campaigns directed at SMS sweepstakes participants to increase sales.
4. Build Customer Loyalty
Text to win SMS sweepstakes not only build your customer list, they also help to increase brand loyalty. By running a text messaging campaign for your business, you’ll be able to thank your customers for remaining loyal to your brand in a concrete way with a chance to win a prize for free.
CPG companies, cannabis brands, retail, and ecommerce are some of the types of companies that can see the greatest improvement in customer loyalty simply by running monthly text to win promotions.
5. Small Prizes Are Welcome in Text Sweepstakes Campaign
If you are unsure about whether to run a text sweepstakes because you assume that people will only enter to win an expensive prize, the opposite is actually true. You don’t have to give away thousands in cash and sweepstakes prizes to get an ROI.
Text to win prizes don’t need to be huge. In fact, small prizes work well in text sweepstakes as well. For example, you can run a monthly text to win where you give away merch, gift cards or other giveaway prizes.
On the other hand, if you want to maximize the number of entrants for your SMS sweepstakes, an irresistible prize is one of the most important campaign features that help your sweepstakes go viral.
How to Attract More SMS Sweepstakes Participants
SMS weepstakes participants aren’t hard to find if you know where to look.
To help you get started with your SMS marketing, we’ve compiled a list of 50 proven methods you can use to attract participants to a text-to-win sweepstakes.
Read it here:
People are spending more and more time on their phones making, SMS sweepstakes the perfect way to reach your audience. If you want to get the most from your text message marketing, run a text to win sweepstakes today!
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