SMS for Marketo - The Definitive Guide

Whether you are a Marketo B2C or B2B marketer, a messaging system like SMS is definitely a no-brainer channel for marketing. SMS marketing statistics reveal that text messages have got:
•an average open rate of 98 percent
•is 4 times more likely to be viewed by potential customers compared to electronic mail
•90% of the time, SMS is read inside three minutes

SMS Terminology

First and foremost, it is important to understand some fundamental technical terminology:

Mobile carrier - this is the phone company that offers connectivity services
SMS Gateway - a system which does the actual beaming of text messages via a wireless network (e.g. ClickSend, Oxygen, Twilio)
Since Marketo does not have its own default SMS gateway, users have to identify the best one before signing up.

one way sms gateway

One Way SMS - Overview
One-way SMS is supported out of the box in Marketo utilizing Webhooks.
Webhooks is actually a tool enabling you to easily connect with your SMS gateway or any other external system.

Webhooks Limitations

•Not trackable - Unlike emails, automatic SMS link tracking is not achievable in Marketo, this means you simply can't determine the effectiveness of the program’s services.
•In-depth technical knowledge needed
•No opt-out - your recipients cannot respond via SMS to opt-out, which is compulsory in most countries
•Not high volume - Cannot manage high-volume SMS sends 
•SMS unsubscribes management is a complex and error prone task since Webhooks does not have automated features to handle it.
•Manual Data Cleaning - International number format (e.g. +61547223484) is required by most SMS gateways, however the majority of your data come in local format (e.g. 0547223484)

You may choose any HTTP API based SMS gateway. Although, they vary vastly when it comes to dependability, price, network coverage and ability to handle high SMS volume.

Additionally, each sms gateway may have different regional capabilities, which is critical for not getting blocked by the carriers in that particular region.

Two Way SMS for Marketo - Overview

There are numerous ways to do 2-way SMS in Marketo. As most use webhooks for outbound text messages, we will concentrate on how to enable inbound SMS.

There are four ways to achieve this:
•Custom Gateway integration - your programmer creates code to integrate Marketo to a particular gateway
•Marketo Form Hack - a simple hack where you could set up a SMS gateway to send text messages to a Marketo form
•Basic SMS Solutions - Marketo Launchpoint solutions which enable simple inbound SMS
•Enterprise SMS Solutions - Marketo Launchpoint solutions which offer total SMS control in marketo sms

Marketo Form Hack
This is often a good option for lower volume campaign requirements, where there isn't too much complexity.

You need one free Zapier account, which lets you simply connect the web apps you use. Zapier supports several SMS gateways using its webhook enabled trigger.

•Certainly not for high volume text messaging
•Not a real-time service
•Requires technical knowledge to setup
•No subscription management
•Produce a "loop" of duplicate objects

Custom Gateway Integration
If you have in-house skilled web development staff, a lot of money and time, then integrating messaging technology into your existing system might be a possible option.

Following are some critical features you should consider adding it on the customized integration API:

Crucial Features:
•Manage Unsubscribes automatically 
•Exclude unsubscribed numbers automatically on SMS send
•Automatically add Opt-out text to every SMS
•Easy to use from Marketo
•Handle leads with duplicate contacts
•Match up existing prospects in Marketo with inbound SMS

Now it's time to signup for an attractive, low-cost option to manage your inbound SMSes in Marketo. For more information about 2-Way SMS Enterprise solutions for Marketo, <a href ="http://launchpoint.marketo.
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