There’s no arguing with the facts: over 98% of mobile users will read a business-based SMS. But why do users trust a text? And where does this leave email marketing?

Research from The State of SMS found that not only will 98% of users open an SMS message by the end of the day, but 90% will open it within three minutes of receiving it. And with the number of people opting in to receive SMS from businesses set to rise from 37.2 million to 48.65 million by 2020, it’s widely recognised as the fastest growing marketing channel.

But with SMS making waves, where does email marketing sit in all of this?

The facts and figures

Email remains a popular channel for businesses, attracted by its low cost. A typical email campaign costs just R70 per 1,000 sent. But it’s the bigger picture that businesses often overlook or are unaware of. The volume of businesses using email is astronomical, making the marketing platform extremely cluttered.

sms vs email

Think about your email inbox right now: how many notifications will be glaring at you?  As you delve further, no doubt there’ll be emails you immediately delete every time – without even opening.  When email inboxes are flooded with the unwanted and the unrequested, it’s easy to see why a well-meaning, perfectly legitimate marketing mail might get lost and ignored. In fact, The State of SMS found that 18% of people receive in excess of 51 emails per week.

What’s more, email providers such as Google and Microsoft now provide advanced solutions that automatically segment or hide marketing and communication emails before users even see them.

Text messages, however, are not burdened with the challenge of attracting your attention.  When you receive a text, your phone lights up and catches your eye – leading to a higher likelihood of an instant pick up. If your phone isn’t within immediate reach, you’ll certainly pick it up by the end of the day. In fact, most phones will continue to remind users that they have received a text message until it’s opened, something that can certainly be used to the advantage of your business.

While email marketing remains a popular tool for nurturing clients, SMS marketing is king to drive sales or consumers to your store or website.  From as little as 18c* per SMS you can plug into the mobile realm with our easy-to-use SMS platform.

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