Businesses can tap into an inexpensive and effective channel for customer service by deploying commercial SMS messaging.
A growing number of consumers are using alternatives other than the telephone or face-to-face interaction for customer service. Increasingly, digitally savvy consumers seek customer service through relatively new communication channels such as smartphone apps and social media messaging.
As this transition takes place, some consumers remain wary of submitting sensitive information through these relatively new technologies. However, nearly everyone is comfortable with texting, and a growing number of consumers are using it to communicate with businesses.
As a result, a growing number of enterprises are incorporating text messaging into their customer service programs.
The following are six strategies for deploying SMS customer service for your business.
1. Be Mindful of the Medium
Texting is all about brevity, so keep it short. From a consumer’s perspective, it’s difficult to reply via text with complex, long text responses.
If you need to deliver longer messages to consumers, use other means such as email. When it comes to SMS customer service, shorter is better.
2. SMS is Great for Reminders
If your business provides a service that requires scheduling, you can use text messaging to reduce missed appointments. Sometimes, consumers book appointments months in advance. A commercial SMS service is a great way to send quick reminders. Also, it only takes seconds for consumers to confirm their appointments with one letter or one-word replies.
3. Leverage Unified Messaging
Vendors who deliver enterprise-grade SMS service can provide you with a powerful unified communication platform that allows you to manage your entire text-based customer support initiative. If necessary, you can redirect the consumer to social media, telephone-based or email support using the dashboard.
Today’s robust commercial SMS packages enable you to open and resolve an entire support issue using text messaging. If the engagement becomes too complicated for texting, you can quickly transfer to the consumer to another form of communication by sending a link.
4. Customers Love the Human Touch
Most consumers would rather text customer support as opposed to engaging your customer service department using social media messaging. SMS messaging is more personalized and flexible.
Texting is an intimate form of communication. Therefore, consumers prefer a personalized experience when engaging with support via text.
5. Use SMS to Collect Customer Feedback
A relatively small percentage of customers will take the time to offer negative feedback. Most will instead choose to patronize your competitors.
You can avoid customer losses by soliciting feedback via SMS messaging. Customers can immediately reply to surveys with one character or one-word responses.
Also, they’re more likely to provide critical feedback that can help you improve your operation because texting is a familiar and comfortable communication mode.
6. Leverage SMS for Follow-Up
A commercial SMS service is a great way to follow-up with customers. For instance, you can use text messaging to connect with customers who haven’t patronized your business for some time. It’s an easy way to offer a promotion that will draw customers back to your business.
Commercial SMS messaging is fast, easy and cost-effective. Furthermore, it’s a familiar and private medium that customers can use to voice opinions that they might otherwise feel uncomfortable sharing on public forums, such as those used for product reviews.
Text-based customer service can give you a considerable advantage over voice-based engagement. Whether you use the service for inbound or outbound communication, the technology can improve the quality of engagement between your business and consumers.
Each generation grows more digitally acclimated than its predecessors. As time goes on, SMS customer service will most likely graduate from a “nice to have” option to a must-have service.