SMS for business: 9 mind-blowing benefits of texting your customers
For your marketing campaigns to succeed, your marketing messages need to reach your customers, and they need to take action. However, there's a slight problem.
44% of customers won't do business with a company that doesn't use their preferred mode of communication. That means two things: You have to figure out their preferred communication channels then reach out to them through these channels.
And for most people nowadays, that's via text message. U.S. consumers spend, on average, 333% more time texting than they do calling people. And it's easy to understand why.
Sending a text is more convenient than making a phone call. More personal than an email. More conducive to building a long-term relationship than just about any communication channel out there.
And we're just barely scratching the surface. In this post, we're diving deep into the benefits of using SMS to reach your customers. Let's get started.
1. Texting helps you reach more of your customers
90% of customers read a text message in the first three minutes after receiving it, but only 21.33% open their emails. By simply switching to SMS, your marketing messages will reach more customers.
If you're running a webinar and want to improve your attendance rate, then text messaging is your best bet to remind them at least 15 minutes before you go live.
Given the stats I just mentioned, compare that with what you'd expect if you only relied on email to remind your subscribers to show up for your webinars.
The same applies to your offers and flash sales on special occasions. Customers have more than one email address, and even if you asked for their best email address, there's a chance that you won't get it. And if you do, you have to send them whitelisting instructions so that your emails land in their primary inbox.
Since you're not sure if they will whitelist you, your promotion emails will drown in the sea of other emails they receive. That, right there, is a lot of uncertainty to deal with. And it's not good for your business either.
2. Build a relationship on their terms through SMS
Over 50% of consumers prefer SMS over email for reminders and notifications. And 89% of leads prefer texts over phone calls. By communicating via text message, you get rid of the friction that comes with mismatched communication preferences. Neither of you will struggle to get hold of the other.
Your customers will read and respond to you at their own time, allowing you to engage with them on their terms. On the other hand, let them know when you're going to be available to respond to their inquiries, so they set the correct internal expectations and reach out to you during your business hours.
Besides, texting is less formal, so they're going to express themselves freely (just like they're talking to a friend), meaning that your interactions are going to go deeper as compared to using email.
3. Automate SMS and include texting in workflows
Most software tools come with integrations allowing you to incorporate other tools such as SMS software and automate your existing workflows.
For example, customer satisfaction surveys are a critical part of your sales process because the feedback you get helps you improve and provide a better buying experience for your customers.
Now, given that by 2021, mobile ecommerce sales will account for 67.2% of total ecommerce sales, you might also want to add a survey into your sales checkout process via SMS.
It's convenient for customers, and they're more likely to give you feedback almost immediately if they’re using their phones to buy. Make the service toll free to entice them to respond to your survey.
Another way to include SMS in your existing workflows is separating what you send to clients via email and text. For example, you want to restrict educational content to emails and send promo codes and other relevant offers via text.
Many sales teams using Close find great success following up with qualified prospects via SMS.
4. Get a digital record of customer interactions
Unlike phone calls, SMS communication is already in text form. So a text conversation with a customer is an easy-to-understand record of customer interactions. You can import this data into your CRM tool to expand your customer profiles.
Besides, given that your CRM has a digital record of the conversations you have with your customers, go through them to identify problems that should be addressed. It will help you serve them better.
You can run your SMS interactions through sophisticated sales intelligence tools, or enter them into a word cloud tool and see what common themes emerge. Pay attention to the dominant words because they represent recurring themes that will help you identify common problems that you might have ignored, so you start paying more attention to them.
In addition, you'll identify common words and phrases that will help you improve the tone and style you use to communicate and connect with your customers through your sales messages.
5. Add a personal touch to service without breaking the bank
As you work toward providing excellent customer service, you might find yourself spending money on voice calls and customer service tools such as live chat tools and chatbots.
However, you can still provide the same quality of customer support through texting at a fraction of the cost.
Here's how to personalize customer service through texting:
Address your customers by their first name: This gets hold of their attention because instinctively, they feel like you know them. Your message also comes across as personalized and, at the back of their minds, they feel that you care enough because you're paying attention to the details.
Use your CRM data: If your customer has interacted with the customer service team before, you don't need to ask them to describe their issues again. Look at your CRM data to understand what they've been struggling with and help them resolve their problems fast.
Create a smooth transition: If your customer has a problem that only a specific department can handle, let them know that you're handing them over to someone in that department. It could be something as simple as, "I'm handing you over to George from the developer team. Click this link to reach out to me in case you get stuck."
As you exit the scene, your customer won't feel like you left them hanging because they know who will pick up the conversation to help solve their problems.
6. Speed up the sales process and save agents time
By using SMS messages for scheduling and notifications, you can speed up your sales process. When running ads, for instance, potential customers who sign up for your offers through FB lead ads are more inclined to share personal information such as their mobile number. Use your SMS texting nurturing sequence to follow up on them immediately once you get their number.
On the other hand, you need your customer service agents to be productive and focus on essential tasks. Automate appointment reminders for demos and sales calls, so agents don't have to follow up with customers manually.
7. No internet required — reach anyone, anywhere
Unlike email, you can reach your customers wherever they are with a text message. People move almost everywhere with their phones, and even without an internet connection, the messaging function on their phones will still work.
So if you're running a promotion, you don't have to put it on hold simply because you're afraid that deliverability will be affected due to lack of internet access, or customers won't read your emails.
Also, if you’re running a campaign and a large number of customers from different geographical regions make a purchase, provide order status notifications such as shipping details and estimated time of arrival through texting just in case they can’t access the internet.
This is especially useful if you’re trying to make money from podcasting, for example. Think about it. Most people listen to podcasts on the go. By sending an SMS to your listeners with a relevant CTA, you’re more likely to convert listeners to customers.
8. Expand to new demographic segments
The newer generations are moving away from email as the first native mobile generation. Text messaging is their preferred medium. 75% of millennials prefer text messaging over talking.
This increases your chances of running a successful marketing campaign because you've reached out to them through a channel they're comfortable with when using their phones.
9. Your customers will engage more with your brand
Customers engage more with text messages than email and other channels. Compared to email, you're eight times more likely to receive a response from an SMS you send to your customers.
On average, an office worker receives 120 emails per day. That's enough to make their brains freeze when they think of how they're going to wade through the deluge of messages and still maintain their sanity. So, they either ignore the emails, delete them en masse, or start considering operation inbox zero. The result? Little to no engagement with your brand.
With text messaging, however, 30% of your customers will respond to your messages. Engagement at its best, which can fully support your B2B SaaS Marketing efforts. Isn't that a good sign if you've had trouble standing out in a crowded inbox?
The money is in texting.
Remember the saying, "the money is in the list?"
That has been true for a while now, but things have changed. With subscribers having to wade through a ton of emails to read your messages, it's getting harder to sell anything through email.
But that doesn't mean that you've hit a dead end. Your next move should be adapting your marketing and revenue strategy using the right tool to reach your customers through texting because that's where the money is.
We're not through yet...
You might have heard that integrating texting and other channels with UCaaS is kind of important to have a unified communication system.
(That's an understatement, but maybe you missed it. Integrating texting and other channels with UCaaS is critical to having a unified communication system.)
The redundancy, inefficiency, and turf wars between departments due to lack of transparency isn't anything worth writing home about.
Customers prefer speaking with the agent they first reached out to and hate handovers because they'll have to start explaining themselves all over again. An experience like this leads to a loss of loyalty, bad reputation, and low sales.
So, in addition to helping you run text messaging campaigns without a glitch, Close helps your team improve productivity, helps you offer better customer service, and reduces administrative work through a unified communication system. Manage all your text messages, calls, and emails in one unified workspace.
Addison Burke is a freelance writer that teaches businesses how to grow through better digital marketing.
Do you want to continue engaging with customers? Download our free resource: Talk to Your Customers. Don't let the line go dead.