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What is SMS and MMS messaging? What does SMS mean?
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Yuan Yang
Content Editor and Customer Support at Textr
Published Feb 5, 2021

Pop up on your phone, and you can’t help but read it. What is it? It is SMS or MMS. You must have sent and received them many times, but have you ever dug deep into the details of these terms? If you want to know everything about SMS and MMS marketing’s benefits, you have landed in the right place. In this article, we will dive into these two marketing mediums, popular for their ease of use.

What is SMS & MMS?

SMS is short for Short Message Service, and MMS means Multimedia Messaging Service. SMS messaging enables users to send a message that is up to 160 characters long. In contrast, MMS allows users to send a message that includes media. This means whenever you send a text with an attached file. For example, an image, video, emoji, or a website link, you’re sending an MMS.

These two acronyms are something that you most likely to see, popping up here and there. As often as the terms SMS marketing and MMS marketing.

More often than not, we get many questions about what is SMS & MMS and differences between these two.

Since almost every device supports SMS and MMS, you don’t really have to choose one over the other.

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Difference Between SMS and MMS

Both MMS and SMS messages fall under the category of “text messages.” The main difference is that SMS can only contain text content, while MMS can have media files.

But, because of the increased character length, MMS messaging cost more.

You can categorize the main differences between MMS and SMS into three areas:

  • Character limits
  • Supported media
  • Pricing

SMS Marketing

Many studies have shown from time to time that customers prefer to be contacted via text. This is because of the fact that SMS is shorter. The Cellular Telecommunications Industry Association survey found users have more trust in SMS.  93% thought SMS was a more trusted communications medium.

Over many years, SMS marketing has fueled many companies with incredible sales. You may yet to run an SMS marketing campaign yourself. But you must have received some sort of SMS communication from any business. Be it any brand, running a contest or a hospital, confirming your appointment.

If you’ve run any such campaign before, you most likely know how useful it is to reach your customers. Still, you may need some help to justify your use of SMS marketing services to people in your company. To this end, below is our curated list of key reasons why SMS marketing is beneficial.

Adaptable across markets

It is best suited to B2C and B2B audiences. Commercial brands can use it for internal communications by companies. It’s also suitable for third-sector and public-sector companies.  The versatile nature has also made it popular across diverse industries. From healthcare to retailers, it is good for a wide range of communication. Also, if you intend to penetrate in a new market, you already have a channel to target your audience.

Efficient at reaching people

According to research, more than 60% of the world’s population use or own a mobile phone. This means your advertisement is almost guaranteed to reach out to most people. Also, you can reach the global audience. So if you choose some market-winning SMS marketing services, you will be able to reach people .


Having incredible SMS marketing statistics highlights the significant opportunity this medium represents. It is proof that it’s a result-driven marketing campaign. Research says that 98% of SMS are read, making it even more effective than email marketing. Despite many messaging apps, many people send and receive text messages every day.

Thus, responding to your marketing pitch should be second nature to the recipients. Moreover, the industry average SMS response rate is 19% click-through rate. And since many of us have set our mobiles to alert mode, when a message pops, it’s most likely to be opened and then clicked.


Another key reason for using SMS marketing  is that it can be somewhat instant to draft out and carry out a campaign. There is no need to spend time designing and editing an SMS message. All you need to do is tell your need, details of your promotion or offer, the audience you intend to cater to and boom! The service will take care of the rest.

The time-saving nature of  SMS marketing campaigns is cost-effective too. So any response to your campaign will boost your ROI on your  interaction with customers, even if it is  low.

It’s direct

The message arrives in the recipient’s inbox and often pops as an alert on the people’s phone until it is read. They don’t have to login in or launch any app to check, unlike email. With a massive amount of content created every day, it’s hard to reach the right people you wish to target. But with SMS marketing, you can overcome this challenge by sending direct messages.

MMS Marketing

MMS marketing has proven to be very useful to businesses worldwide. It is globally available AND works on all smartphones. One of the most used messaging channels today is MMS. They are available on 98% mobile devices. And your recipients do not need to download any extra applications. But, unlike SMS, MMS doesneede mobile data to send media attachments.

Besides delivering catchy content, MMS allows users to respond with both SMS and MMS.

The Bottomline

The bottom line is that consumers respond well to visuals such as images or videos. So it’s not surprising that text messages with pictures typically drive more engagement. But, with conversion rates from SMS as high as 45%, your text marketing strategy should have a mixture of both.

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