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When should you go over 1 message when sending a text message

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SMS stands for Short Message Service, with the huge emphasise being put onto the ‘short’ part. SMS is meant to be quick and to the point. No one wants to receive a text message where you have to scroll down to read the entire thing. Yes, mobile phone screens are getting bigger, but seeing a huge text puts people off even starting to read it.

1 text message is equal to 160 characters, and 9 times out of 10, this is more than enough to get your message across. If you do need to include more information you could always send a link to your website, or even better include a mobile landing page where you can include extra information and a couple of enticing images.

Different message lengths all depend on what your required call to action is. Do you want someone to make a purchase or are you just giving them some information?

When selling something, you want to get to the point as quickly as possible, make it clear what you are selling without boring people with the details, and have a clear call to action at the end of the message. But on the other hand, if you need to tell a group of people a lot of information that they will need to access easily, then having all this information in a text message is a good idea.

Text Marketer Message Stat

The question is – when should you go over 1 message part into a double, triple, or even 4-part messages? Is it even necessary or is it just a waste of time and money?

When 1 message is enough
As we said above, 1 message is normally more than enough, with 160 character you can include a compelling opening line, a small amount of information and a clear call to action.

75% of all text messages that go out through the Text Marketer platform are 1-part messages

Single messages are best used for small updates, sales and marketing messages, delivery notifications, and reminders. These tend to only need a small amount of information and if more info is required, a link to a website or landing page can be added.

Also, if you are sending the same message to 100,000 customers, then ensuring that the content is within a single message will save you a lot of money.

Doubling up to 2 messages
A double message can be great if there is no way you can reduce the content into a single message and you have some important bits of important you need to include. 2-part messages can still be used in a sales or marketing message as they don’t look too big and can quickly be read, digested, and acted upon.

20% of all text messages that go out through the Text Marketer platform are 2-part messages

As long as you keep the message simple with only 1 call to action, then including a bit more information about your sale, event, or whatever you are promoting, a double message can be a good idea.

We would advise if you were to use a 2-part message, to not try and cram in everything, only include 3 or 4 extra bits of information. For example, if you have a sale on, include the offer, a time limit, a few things the customer could buy, what the user needs to do to get the sale, and then a link to your website at the end.

Going Neapolitan with a 3-part message
3-part messages are used more for communication and are rarely sent in bulk to thousands of customers at the same time. These types of messages tend to be unique messages sent to single people, either using them as a conversation, or updating people with some information.

4% of all text messages that go out through the Text Marketer platform are 3-part messages

Let’s say that you have an employee who works offsite, and you need to get some important information to them quickly. Sending them a text message with all this information in, that they can easily read without having to click or do anything else to find out more, is great as you know the message will be read and not missed unlike sending an email.

What the different parts look like

Different part messages

We would never recommend going over a 3-part messages into a 4-part message, as you can see the 4-part message above goes way over 1 screen size and is just too long for SMS.

If you are unsure about whether you need a 1, 2 or 3-part message, or are struggling to reduce your message down into a single message, then please give us a call and our handy team of experts can help you. We would also recommend that you test between message lengths, as sometime a 2-part message can work better than a single message.

Remember sending more than 1 message part will incur extra costs and will take you more time to create and check the message as well.


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