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MMS Image Guidelines and Best Practices
MMS Marketing Best Practices

MMS Image Guidelines and Best Practices

Here are all the MMS best practices including when to use MMS, MMS image and GIF sizing and dimensions, and more so you can make your SMS picture perfect.

September 14, 2022

Images stick with us. After three days, information in images is retained by 65% of people compared to only 10% of people who just heard the information. Eye-catching images can be the key to SMS marketing success. Launching a new collection? Use a GIF that shows off many pieces from the collection. Want to make a great first impression with a new subscriber? Use an image that displays your brand personality. 

In this post, we'll go over the best times to send MMS, guidelines for MMS creation, and more.  

When to Use MMS (Backed by Our Data)

Using our data from leading eCommerce brands, we have found the best places to use MMS. Many of these use cases are about cultivating CLTV (customer lifetime value). CLTV should be a top priority for brands, especially with recent changes to the marketing ecosystem, such as the iOS updates, making it harder and more expensive to target customers. This focus on CLTV pays off. Research done by Bain & Company found that a 5% increase in customer retention can increase profits by 25% to 95%. 

So here are the top performing MMS use cases: 

  • Welcome Series: This is the first hello for your new subscriber. Including an image reflecting your brand's voice and tone is a great way to build a deeper relationship. We've found that including images in the welcome series can directly increase initial conversion rates.
  • Brand Building and Awareness Campaigns: Brands should engage with their subscriber list, ideally once a week, to keep their SMS subscriber list warm. Not doing so can risk your list feeling exploited only for sales and conversions. Images, GIFs, and emojis (where it fits with your brand voice) can be effectively used to build brand equity with prospective and current customers in an authentic way.
  • Product Launches and Waitlists: Showing the highly sought-after product with a visual image increases conversion rates. If you are promoting a broader product line, create a GIF to highlight multiple SKUs. 
  • All Conversion Drips: For Abandoned Browse, Cart, Checkout, and Back-in-Stock notifications, including a dynamic product image increases conversion rates for high-intent customers. 

MMS Image & GIF Sizing and Dimensions

MMS Image Dimension

Static images for SMS should be in JPG format. JPG is supported by most devices and renders the fastest. We recommend keeping the most important content close to the middle of the image. 

For image sizing, you will want to use a tall image with a 9:16 aspect ratio and no transparency. Here are some examples of sizing:

  • 640 x 1138px (W x H)
  • 1080 x 1920px

MMS GIF Dimension

For GIFs, you want to use a square or tall image with the following dimensions and with no transparency:

  • 480 x 480 px (recommended)
  • 640 x 640 px
  • 480 x 640 px
  • 480 x 720 px

MMS Image & GIF Sizing 

All images and GIFs for SMS must be 500KB or less. You want to keep them under this size to make sure they are not compressed by the carrier. 

If you need to reduce the size of animated GIFs, you can: 

  • Use cuts instead of fades - abrupt cuts can reduce file sizes by 50%
  • Reduce the number of frames per second
  • Use a color overlay - this reduces the number of colors used

Personalize and Segment 

The SMS marketing channel has the ability to be hyper-personalized through segmentation. Using images that are personalized will be even more relevant and effective. Although the sky's the limit when it comes to segmenting and personalization for SMS, you don’t have to do anything too crazy to see amazing results. Concentrating on showcasing your brand personality and finding what resonates with your customers is a perfect place to start.

For Birthdate Co., a company that crafts one-of-a-kind astrology candles and books, the whole brand revolves around personalization. Combining astrology and personalization, Birthdate Co. started sending highly-targeted weekly horoscope SMS campaigns that saw CTRs of over 20%. These campaigns focused on what draws their customers to the brand and provided entertaining and personalized content. 

There are only 12 zodiac signs, so only 12 slight alterations to an image create a hyper-personalized and delightful experience for their whole subscriber list. 

👀 Watch Ajay Mehta and Voyage CEO Rev Reddy discuss why Birthdate Co.’s products have been such a success, Ajay’s journey as an entrepreneur, and much more here. 

Don’t Forget to A/B Test

Every brand has its own personality, nuances, and target markets, which is why it’s vital to test what works for you. By A/B testing different images and GIFs, you will find what resonates with your subscribers. 

Build Delightful Subscriber Experiences

Voyage’s SMS platform empowers brands to send personalized messages across the customer lifecycle. If you like to learn more about how Voyage can start driving revenue and building meaningful relationships with your customers, request a demo today! 

Looking for more SMS best practices? Download SMS Marketing 101: The Definitive Guide now and equip your company with all the knowledge and tactics needed for a successful SMS voyage.

Originally published Feb. 2021. Updated Sept. 2022.

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