How to Use SMS Messaging to Improve the Customer Experience
Whenever anyone asks me what the first step of marketing is, I always say, “Know your audience.” You should know who your prospects are and gear your marketing efforts toward them. You can run the most intricate and innovative marketing campaign you can imagine. But if you’re targeting the wrong audience, it won’t get you very far.
Part of knowing your audience is understanding where they are and finding the ways to communicate there. One place where many consumers are is on their cellphones. In fact, recent reports stated that consumers spent an average of 4.2 hours per day on their phones in 2020.
Proven Communication Method
So you can see that consumers are spending a lot of time on their phones. But what does that mean for businesses? Are they open to speaking to companies in this manner, or do they want to keep it on a personal level? You want to reach them where they are, but you also don’t want to appear intrusive. Here’s the good news: 82 percent of consumers open every text message they receive.
SMS messaging is a proven communication method that consumers are literally carrying around in their pockets or purses 24/7. It’s a highly reliable way to reach your customers.
Many businesses are reaching their customers this way. And customers respond well to it. Facebook has reported that more than 175 million people message a WhatsApp Business account every day. Furthermore, Facebook research shows that people prefer to directly engage with businesses through messaging to get the help they need.
Some businesses prefer more traditional methods of communication or find much success in email marketing. Utilizing SMS messaging does not take away from those efforts. Instead, it involves reaching customers and prospects in the way they want to speak to you. If they prefer phone calls, you’re there. Do they like email? You can be there, too. Prefer a text message? Great. The more channels a brand communicates with their customers, the better chances they have of reaching their markets to the fullest potential.
Different messages are going to be more effectively catered to different forms of communication. For instance, a long-form piece of content can work well in a white paper or on a website. You won’t want to send lengthy messages via SMS. While text messages can’t have the depth of other forms of communication, you can send links to relevant content, send reminders of needed services or upcoming appointments, and much more.
SMS messaging can also be a space where customers/prospects can reach out to ask questions. When you have a proper omni-channel presence, you’ll have more channels, and you’ll have a better chance to reach customers where they are. When these conversations are all linked together through your CX platform, you can best serve your customers.
By utilizing SMS messaging as part of your CX strategy, you can enable your customer-facing team to have a quick and easy way to reach out to customers—whether they need to schedule an appointment or share an update on an order.
Match the Message to the Customer Journey
When utilizing SMS messaging for CX, the length of communication is not the only messaging factor to consider. You also want to make sure you’re sending the right messages at the right times.
There are many different points to the customer journey. And with proper omni-channel communication, a prospect can seamlessly move from digital to physical and back again.
When you think about texting your prospects, it’s important to think through whether they are in discovery mode or decision mode. It’s the same with a targeted email campaign: You don’t want to blast pricing information or demo requests to someone who is just starting to put together information about a service.
Since each touchpoint you have with a prospect is important, you don’t want to overwhelm them. Instead, you want to guide them.
Are you curious about how this can work?
Many of the CRM and CX platforms on the market today have some form of SMS messaging options for you to use.
For instance, you can do the following with SugarCRM SMS Messaging:
- Text “on the fly” from any record with a mobile phone number.
- Send texts to one or more recipients by using user-definable pre-built SMS Text Templates.
- Send texts from Sugar List Views by selecting records and clicking a “Text” button.
- To enable automated texting-based communication, integrate texts with workflows on values in Sugar fields.
- Send texts via Sugar Campaigns.
- Text reminders for upcoming meetings and appointments.
- Text updates when the status of a case changes.
- Send both SMS and MMS communications.
- Store all texts in a Messages subpanel under contacts, leads, etc.
If you’re looking for more information on how SMS messaging for CX can work for you, contact us today.
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