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The benefits of using Text Messaging vs Postal Services – Saving Money, Boosting Response & Going Green

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Are you still using the postal service for all your communications? Then, you’re in for some very good news indeed on how to save thousands, boost business and have stronger environmental credentials all at the same time.

A bold claim. But, this is not one of those over-complicated articles on efficiency, structure or cost effectiveness. This comes down to cold, hard pounds, shillings and pence ….. and has a strong, environmentally positive message too.

The Financial Services industry sends billions of pieces of mail every year in the UK. Some of the time this is unavoidable. For example, certain contracts, policy documents and alike have to be posted by law. The vast majority though are information mailings, reminders, offers or simply follow ups. These do not all need to be sent by post. Most of these types of communication can easily be handled by sending a text message.

Insurance Renewal Reminder – A typical example

Let’s take this as a typical example in the insurance industry. All Company A needs to do is remind a customer that they need to renew their insurance and to please call them. Why spend 50p or more on a letter, stationery, time, postage costs etc. (not to mention valuable wood resources for the paper, fuel costs for the delivery, etc. etc.) when a simple 3.8p text message would suffice. Also, with the text message, you can track it has been delivered and it gets straight to the customer’s phone who can use that exact same device to call!

Why not E-mail? 3 Main reasons as a starter … 

Mostly when a company sends a communication to a customer, they are trying to get a response. E-mails, broadly speaking, just don’t get an acceptable level of response any more.

  • Excessive spam has crippled trust in e-mail deliverability and companies are looking for a good response rate to their communications.
  • Excessive ‘phishing’ or ‘scam’ e-mails from bogus financial services (and other) companies often means those who do receive emails will not click on them.
  • On top of this, those people that do receive documentation by E-mail tend to print it and therefore you end up with the same environmental paper cost.

Forgetting the environmental benefits for a moment, how much money can you save using SMS Text Messaging in your business?

Hardly any business could stop using mail altogether but by using SMS where possible you can boost your response rates, save huge amounts of money and be a more environmentally conscious company.

To put this into context with some numbers, here is the typical cost of sending a 1 page mailing. Also, it shows the cost per response at a typical rate of 2.5%:

USING MAIL
Volume Mail Cost Response% Cost/Response
1,000 £500 2.5% £20
2,500 £1,250 2.5% £20
5,000 £2,500 2.5% £20
7,500 £3,750 2.5% £20
10,000 £5,000 2.5% £20
50,000 £25,000 2.5% £20
100,000 £50,000 2.5% £20

 

And the costs using SMS showing large savings, coupled with a typical response rate of 10%, bringing the cost per response down by some £19.62!:

USING SMS
Volume SMS Cost Response% Cost/Response Savings compared to Mail
1,000 £38 10.0% £0.38 £462
2,500 £95 10.0% £0.38 £1,155
5,000 £190 10.0% £0.38 £2,310
7,500 £285 10.0% £0.38 £3,465
10,000 £380 10.0% £0.38 £4,620
50,000 £1,900 10.0% £0.38 £23,100
100,000 £3,800 10.0% £0.38 £46,200

 

Using a conservative cost figure of 50p per item of post (most business federations estimate this more toward the 70p range as an average including time, stationery, stamp, etc.) the savings using SMS are incredible. When you factor in that you are likely to get a 4-10 times higher response rate and that it promotes a positive environmental message for your company, it is an extremely compelling argument.

How ‘Green’ is it using SMS instead of mailing?

It is actually quite staggering how many trees it takes to make our beloved paper. The exact number depends on quality of the paper in question, to what extent it is recycled and so on. But, a generally accepted figure from the trusted source Conservatree is that around 8,000 pieces of average office paper takes 1 x 40 feet tall tree of about 6-8 inches in diameter – an ‘average’ tree.

The figures below show the ‘tree cost’ of a 1, 5 & 10 page letter including an A5 envelope (even before the additional environmental cost of transporting the items):

How many trees could your business save?

COST “IN TREES” OF MAILINGS
Volume Number of Trees for
1 Page A4
Number of Trees for
5 Page A4
Number of Trees for
10 Page A4
1,000 0.25 0.75 1.38
2,500 0.63 1.88 3.44
5,000 1.25 3.75 6.88
7,500 1.88 5.63 10.31
10,000 2.50 7.50 13.75
50,000 12.50 37.50 68.75
100,000 25.00 75.00 137.50

Notes to calculations above:
1. Based on approximate calculation of 8000 average weight paper sheets of A4 costing 1 tree. Higher quality paper would cost more trees and vice versa. Source: Conservatree
2. Includes an envelope in each mailing, equivalent to 1 x A4 sheet.
3. Does not include additional environmental cost of transporting the mail items.

Conclusion

The information raises the inevitable question- “why isn’t my business using SMS”?

If your answer to the following questions is yes, then maybe it’s time to have a talk with us;

  • Would you like to save a lot of money on your mailing/postage costs?
  • Would you like to get a better response to your communications?
  • Would you like be able to boost your environmental credentials?
  • Would you like to communicate with your customers in a way they want to be communicated with?

Text Marketer was one of the first agencies in the UK to bring bulk text messaging to businesses small and large. We have built our reputation on quality of service, using only the best UK routing for timely delivery of text messages at the lowest price in the UK. Our client list runs into the thousands, but, notable organisations that have enjoyed the stability and reliability of our service over the last decade include Her Majesty’s Governement, Thames Valley Police, Ministry of Defence, Virgin, Dominos Pizza, VW, Mercedes, NSPCC and BMW.


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