5 Ways To Capture Your Best Leads Using SMS

I don’t know about you, but my email inbox is literally overflowing with information these days. Announcements about new products, the latest training programs, influencer webinars, the 10 best ways to convert leads to customers (guilty), a newly launched MasterMind program… you name it, it’s in there.

The truth of the matter is, we’re all playing for attention in the email inbox. And we’re usually coming up pretty disappointed… aren’t we? So we have to think a little better about how to capture leads and how we’re going to start the conversation with someone who could potentially become a high paying customer.

Let’s forget about email for a second… let’s talk about text instead.


The beautiful and undeniable value of capturing your best leads through SMS is that you can easily and quickly connect with a lead through the device they are virtually never without.

When I’m sitting reading a newsletter or magazine article or sales letter and I want to take action on an ad offering a free video or free report from an article I’m reading, I rarely want to get myself up to go sit in front of my desktop and search for it - I’d rather continue to sit right where I am and use the device that’s sitting right there next to me…  

It would be silly not to capitalise on the mobile revolution in our marketing practices - after all, we know that around 70% of our web visitors are mobile, right? So here are four of the best practices we can use to capture our best leads with SMS…

1) Magazine Catch

One of the best examples I have available to show the effectiveness of the SMS catch is how we do it with a National Magazine Ad.

In the real life example above, we catch them with an offer for a Free Guide and Quotation that leads them to discover how to safely and easily increase the performance and efficiency of their vehicle…

We prompt them with a bit of a lengthy vanity URL and an easy to text in number with a specified CODE or KEYWORD. Once they text in, they are led through an automated, dynamic response that then transfers directly to our CRM system so that we can immediately begin following up with them effectively. As mentioned before, the thing that’s usually next to them when they’re reading these articles is their mobile phone - so the friction is virtually non-existent.

There’s a lot more friction that comes through with a lengthy vanity URL and significantly less friction with an easy-to-text in phone number.

I’m a huge proponent of offering multiple ways of response. So as you can see, you need to give BOTH options: a vanity URL and a way to key in a text response.

We started doing this for several of our clients, especially those that rely on any form of print media and once we did, their response jumped massively because it’s such an easy process for people to respond to.  

2) Podcast Catch 

If you’re a business owner or marketer with a podcast, don’t miss out on the opportunity you have to gather your listeners information every time you put out your content. I hear so many people say things like, ‘What’s the point of doing a podcast? What am I really getting from a it? I’m not even getting paying customers because podcasts are free!’ When actually, it’s super easy to grab piping hot leads from our podcast content and turn them into loyal, paying customers. I see too many people miss out on this easy ask.

For example, during your podcast episode, ask them to text the word “SUCCESS” to a qualified number. The keyword triggers a text message to drive them to a web page to schedule a call with the sales team. Podcast Motor has a great example of a script to use to get people from offline to online as well.

When they text in, they are starting the conversation with you and guess what you’re getting?...Their personal mobile phone number. You have an automatic in to one of the most important and commonly used communication devices. Once they text in to receive the free offer, your line of conversation is open and you can continue to follow-up with them. Remember, cost per conversation is always more important than cost per lead.  

3) Web Catch 

On your company website, add an extension that will conditionally serve up a button for your mobile visitors. Something like this:

A few tools that give you the accessibility of this extension are WordPress, Google Adword Text Extension, and ZipWhip

Remember, 70% of your website traffic is mobile, so don’t miss out on this yield.

The button will appear directly on your website as a link to text you directly with their mobile phone they’re already using. The service will automatically pre-fill the key word for them once they enter in their information to contact you. Once there, they’ll be launched into an automated, dynamic conversation to put them in the right spot in your marketing system and be followed up with to receive additional information and CTA’s…

**BONUS: You can also generate buttons with specific keywords based on which page of your website they opted-in from... i.e. keyword ‘SERVICES’ from the “Services Offered” page of your hair salon’s website. This gives you one more step ahead of the game in knowing what they’re after.

4) Facebook Catch 

By utilising Facebook Lead Ads, we open up the door to a conversation by taking advantage of a couple super important things: accuracy and accessibility. The conversion funnel is systematic, effective and easy to track…

When a potential customer decides to take action on your Facebook Lead Ad for a free video or report, they are directed to a short form that contains pre-filled information they had already linked to their Facebook profile.

Now, think about this… I don’t know about you, but when I fill out lengthy landing pages to receive a free offer, I don’t normally use my best email. But you know where I do use my best email?... Facebook. You catchin’ what I’m throwin’? A Facebook lead ad conversion could look something like this… We recently ran this to promote a free, in-person strategy session at an upcoming GKIC conference I was speaking at:

The copy in the offer is simple but catching, and each specifically serve a certain purpose:

  • “Proven ways to dramatically increase your sales” (value)

  • “Little known lead generation ideas” (scarcity)

  • “Insider access to what’s working now” (urgency)

So think, how can you add value? What do you have that others don’t? What do your customer need right now that can immediately transform their business?

Furthermore, all the information we’re looking for is already filled in by Facebook, so our customers aren’t experiencing any friction with giving us what we want. It’s personal and simple.

Lead ads give you congruency between the response mechanism and the delivery mechanism. They give you the opportunity to generate fresh, offline-compatible leads while keeping people within the Facebook environment the entire time.

Users aren’t shuffled to an offline site to fill out a form (which, a high percentage would automatically drop out of). Lead ads generate leads on Facebook, through Facebook, from Facebook. Win, win, win.

4) Google Catch

For many, many years one of my favourite tools has been Google AdWords, and this catch makes it even better.

The Click to Text Google AdWords Extension is a simple, easy to use (and install) tactic that significantly reduces lead to buyer time by utilising automated conversations that record the lead’s personal information into the system.

You’re not just getting a website visitor here, you’re also getting their email and their mobile phone. With virtually one tap on the ad itself, your leads are directed to a dynamic conversation that provides you with all the info you need to engage with them in the best way. A conversation could look something like this:

You see, it doesn’t have to be complicated. Actually is pretty simple. The questions that get us the contact information we’re looking for are natural and almost obvious for our leads to answer. The automated system creates a qualified conversation and instantly reduces lead to buyer time.

What all this is, is a new way of looking at things… an old way vs. a new way. A looking at metrics with a completely different lens. Think out with the old and in with the new…

Instead of thinking of lead generation as a “cost per lead” bit, we now think more about what’s the cost of generating a conversation.

We sometimes use technology in the wrong way. We don’t afford us the opportunity to amplify and accelerate the human nature of all this. We make things quite complicated or choose to remain in ignorance because we’re scared of failing or looking a fool.

If you’re stuck there, I get it. But if you’re stuck there, it’s time to get out. There are too many opportunities out here ready to be picked and prodded.

When someone wants to take action on your ad and you give them the choice of SMS, the very first capture mechanism you receive is their mobile phone. You have an immediate open channel of communication that will help get you where you want to be.

Creating these dynamic lead to customer experiences through SMS leverages technology in a way that allows us to use it to our business’ favour and our customer’s delight.