SMS (Texting) is a tool financial advisors can no longer ignore or avoid—even though most still do! The appeal of texting lies in its immediacy and simplicity. Advisors need to adopt SMS into their communications strategy simply because every generation is now regularly texting. Most significantly for our industry, the open rate of text messages far exceeds that of email.
Its primary utility for advisors in contacting clients is organizational. Product detail and illustrations are too unwieldy for the short form of the medium, whereas sending a short text is ideal for setting up and confirming meetings, follow-ups, and thank yous. They are easy to template, automate, and offer a low-cost way of keeping lines of communication open while demonstrating service.
If you are looking to use SMS for marketing messaging, always keep it simple and showcase the fundamental value proposition: “lifetime income”, “5% annual return”, etc. The best practice is to ensure you are only messaging those who have opted-in to receiving messages from you. It is critical that a functioning “Opt-Out” option is included in all your text messages.
There are risks to mitigate. It is critical to adhere to FINRA and SEC record-keeping regulations: you will need to keep a record of all communications. There are good options through SMS providers and CRMs (e.g., Salesforce) that will help you systemize and automate that process.
Implementing an SMS process for your practice can improve logistical communications, strengthen connections with clients, and even add a cost-efficient addition to your marketing efforts.