With smartphones and the Internet being so widespread, the relationship between companies and consumers has become very close. Besides email, an optimum channel for putting both sides in touch for certain situations is SMS, whose potential has been the focus of a new study by Ovum and TynTec. What was the result? That 56% of consumers would choose SMS to get in touch with companies.
Speed and immediacy: the features of SMS
Internet surfers follow brands on social media, check their websites regularly, interact and expect a presence to support them, receive information and updates, as well as search for answers to their questions, concerns and curiosities. Various activities are increasingly switching over to smartphones: the most readily available tool to consumers, accessible wherever and whenever.
The wider picture can be seen with the figures based on the study by Ovum and TynTec, performed in February 2016 on a consumer base in the US and Germany. What comes across is their priorities of having fast contact with companies (80%), and finding answers to their questions just as quickly (74%). Given these priorities, SMS is positioned as a channel that can establish the fastest possible link between customers and brands.
Key priorities for consumers in their interactions with customer service agents. Source: www.tyntec.com
SMS to boost the whole customer journey
While email and telephone contact remain the most popular channels for companies to provide their support service, a new need is emerging among consumers: 56%would use SMS to communicate with the support service, by sending messages to the phone number from which they were contacted.
This is a specific need that MailUp can meet without any additional charge: you just need a platform and to have purchased SMS credits to activate a dedicated number. This will let you receive SMS messages from your customers and send them an instant response. What’s more, thanks to the dynamic fields and advanced marketing automation features, you can personalize the text messages and set up various types of triggered messages.
SMS messages are quick, instant and always reach customers, ensuring high open rates. This is why – as shown by the study – customers are increasingly interested in two-way SMS messages (from the customer to the company and vice versa) to make or change appointments (53%),track orders (48%) and give feedback on products and services (43%).
This is a growing trend among Millennials: +16%
Depending on their sector of business, every company must assess the way in which they contact their customers. What suits one brand, might not work for another.
In this variable context, integration between the various communication tools with an omnichannel approach is paramount: SMS, email, telephone contact, social networks and, for the more daring, instant messaging tools (just 18% of customers use online chats to get in touch with companies, yet 50% would be willing to use them).
This trend is set to gain pace and become firmly established. This has also been highlighted by the Ovum and TynTec report: Millennials’ preference for SMS saw a 16% rise, compared to the average of respondents over 45.
The Internet and smartphones on one hand, messaging tools on the other. This is where relations between companies and customers become vastly important, with speed and immediacy being fundamental requirements.