Recently, SMS aggregators have been quite often suggested as efficient tools for mobile marketing. However, there are numerous rather contradicting opinions about this application in the mobile marketing community. Thus, there is no wonder if lately someone has advised you to either accept use of the tool or to completely reject SMS aggregators as a mysterious thing in digital marketing campaign.
Still, it is a vital necessity to understand what exactly SMS aggregators are as well as what benefits they can bring and which role they can play in achieving success in advertising and branding.
What is the essence of SMS aggregators?
SMS aggregators are entities that provide access to mobile networks with the aim of provision of SMS services. SMS aggregators are usually responsible for handling all relationships with mobile network operators on customers’ behalf. An advantage of SMS aggregators is the value they bring and add by the means of such services as billing aggregation, short-code allocation, and SMS marketing. Yet, all of these tools used by SMS aggregators need to be understood properly.
Billing aggregators are applications that can bring you instant income. These include competitions or games as well as providing information, when subscribers pay for accessing information or participating in a competition to the mobile network operator.
Short-code allocation is the service that allows allocating votes to special phone numbers, or allocating specific charity donation sums to specific phone numbers, as well as distributing PR messages and newsletters to mobile phone numbers.
SMS marketing allows sending thousands of messages to multiple recipients every minute. The tool of SMS marketing allows reaching much more customers than any other way of advertising. In addition, much more of potential customers become your actual customers due to SMS marketing.
Independent SMS services are the core feature of SMS aggregators. Namely SMS aggregators are responsible for transacting and routing of sent or received SMS messages from Short Message Service Center (SMCS). While your messages are transmitted constantly to your existing or potential customers, you receive no waste of time and your SMS messages are sent for the sake of avoiding problems your mobile network operators may cause you.
In reality, SMS aggregators are the engines that make both sending and receiving SMS messages and other multimedia or digital content effective and efficient within connectivity capabilities of mobile operators.
What namely SMS aggregators do
The key thing that SMS aggregators do is setting up aggregator model, which is frequently called “local termination model.” The essence of the model is to grant contact with mobile operator’s SMSC. For this, SMS aggregator creates multiple agreements with mobile operators under which SMS traffic into and out of the mobile carrier’s SMSC is provided. Then, mobile operator sends SMS messages to or from user’s account. Customers have also a possibility to create multiple accounts within one SMS aggregator interface.
One of the most beneficial advantages of SMS aggregators is the ease and cost-efficient SMS sending. However, reliability and scale of SMS sending are not less important features of SMS aggregators as the work of the latter is highly dependent on SMS gateways. Since the software allows sending 500 IP SMS messages per second, users of SMS aggregators can immediately benefit from reaching their vast target audience by sending high volumes of SMS.
Benefits of SMS aggregators
The most enjoyable benefit is the quality service provided by SMS aggregator on-call support. Consequently, SMS aggregators become an attractive tool for companies and marketers who perceive e-mails as insufficient marketing solution, especially in cases when distributed content is dynamic. By means of short-codes, SMS aggregators make it possible for mobile content developers to reach the target audience and, thus, monetize the content in a faster and more efficient way.
Yet, there are numerous other advantages and benefits of using SMS aggregators.
First, with SMS aggregator you always know whether your message has reached the target, failed to reach consumer’s phone, is still waiting for delivery, or was rejected. Real-time delivery receipts of each message are available through short-codes. Email gateways do not provide such information.
Second, SMS gateways are not shut down when they send hundreds and thousands of messages. When using e-mail gateways, sending e-mail function can be classified as spam and easily shut down by the carrier if lots of e-mails are sent instantly. Thus, to avoid failure to deliver urgent messages, some emergency response companies now use only SMS gateways to send multiple text messages at once.
Third, short codes used by SMS aggregators allow consumers to answer the message and thus provide truly two-way SMS communication. On the contrary, e-mail gateways do not guarantee that consumer will know how to send his/her answer to e-mail from his phone.
Therefore, if a company wants to send out only reminders, it can get along with e-mail gateways. However, if the goal of the company to receive more monetary benefits from messages it sends, there is no better way than to use SMS aggregator.
Costs of SMS aggregators
Literally, the highest cost of using SMS aggregator is its expense. However, emotional costs of first-time mobile marketers may include their frustration as working with SMS aggregators might turn out to be rather painstaking process. Yet, most of the frustration goes away when these first-time marketers get to know how everything works.
SMS and business
There are claims that SMS marketing solutions are either too costly or complicated. However, the increasing popularity of SMS in mobile marketing will most likely cause the price of SMS to fall.
Currently, 87% of US citizens have a mobile phone with SMS capabilities. Thus, text messages sent to phones can be read within four minutes on average. Although it takes much longer to create an effective message and choose the right SMS option for a company, realizing the power of SMS messages and their potential in mobile marketing are the first steps to success in branding and advertising of the new age.