Unless you have been hiding under a rock for the last 15 years you have watched the evolution of SMS text messaging from the days of pagers to iMessage and GIFs. The SMS world has brought smiley faces, acronyms, and text speak into our world at a rapid pace. Simple, straightforward, fun, and aimed almost exclusively at personal relationships. As users across the globe have adopted SMS, our businesses have fallen behind, unable to grasp how to implement, control, or even understand the scope of how to position it for business use.
When SMS is discussed it is some variety of "What a distraction!" The reality is that cutting edge customer service and sales organization are starting to use text to communicate with clients and each other with incredible results. The payoff can be staggering - happier employees, satisfied clients, new audiences, and with less effort.
Here are just a few examples of ways SMS can fit in the modern business:
- Appointment Reminders
- Package Delivery
- Will Call Notifications
- Service Requests and Status Updates
- Communicating with Field Employees
- Customer Loyalty Programs
- Event/Meeting Confirmations
- Service/Maintenance Reminders
- Emergency Alerts
- Customer Satisfaction Surveys
"Only 1/3 of emails are opened vs 98% of texts, 95% of those are read within 3 minutes"
Businesses are relying heavily on connecting with each other and with clients using email, which is the clear standard in business. The problem with this is that email boxes have become overwhelmed and cluttered, leaving people the choice of spending all day reading email or sacrificing 2/3 to the unread zone. This means that only 1 of the 3 messages you sent to a client is likely to reach them. Is that good enough for our businesses? I don't think so! Texting allows us to communicate at near 100% delivery. Doesn't get much better than that.
"Americans check their cell phone 150 times a day"
Here is the big rub: we live in our cell phones, and what is the primary way we communicate using these devices? You guessed it, SMS! It is embedded in the core OS of our phones and seeing texts and responding to them is made painfully easy. Why wouldn't we meet our clients and employees where they live, on their mobile device? I don't think anyone has checked email 150 separate times unless they are waiting for that Nigerian prince to follow up on your massive inheritance.
"78% of people who use text wish they could have a text conversation with a business"
The people get what they want, or someone else will give it to them. If your client discovers your competitor is easier to communicate with, it can't be good news for your bottom line. Text messaging is a reality. For every business deciding it doesn't fit in their strategy, there is another gaining new clients, your clients.
"Sending and receiving text messages is the most prevalent form of communication for American adults under 50"
Care about your future as a company? Your target demographic is changing, your opportunity to communicate with them is changing, the requirements for earning business is changing. Driving this change in large part is a new generation of connected employees who are used to simple SMS communication and don't want to be bogged down with legacy platforms. Whether you are attracting new clients, maintaining existing ones, recruiting into your workforce, or trying to keep the team you have together, using SMS can make a big difference.
So don't say IDC or IDK. Just jump in and MTFBWY, it's E123. Modern cloud UC solutions offer SMS as a standard offering; more and more contact center offerings are including queueing of SMS and of course, there are standalone services. Wondering how to make this work in your company? Reach out today to learn more about SMS.
Next Article: The Modern Call Center
Author: Kyle Holmes