SMS marketing is an excellent solution for any business’ campaigns. And it can also improve customer service. The reality is that customers are checking their phones throughout the day. Not only are they checking their phones all day, they’re engaging with businesses via their phones and SMS is the perfect channel for customers who don’t want to make expensive phone calls to receive good customer service.
Luckily, using SMS marketing is simple, quick and very cost effective. And it can easily be used to enhance customer service. One of the reasons SMS marketing is so great for customer service is that it offers personalized service, which means more attention for individual customers. Here are some tips on how to effectively use SMS for this improved customer service.
Use SMS for time sensitive messages
Research has found that the majority of SMS messages are opened within three minutes of being sent. This shows how effective this form of communication is for time sensitive messages. If you work in an industry which requires the scheduling of appointments, SMSes are exceptionally effective as reminders. This reduces the number of no-shows and improves the customer experience.
Develop an opt-in strategy
The reality is that you can’t just send SMSes to your customers unless they’ve agreed to be on your list. There are several different country specific rules, laws and guidelines which you’ll need to be aware of. While you should study all of the necessary rules yourself, there are two things in particular to take note of. First, don’t send messages unless consumers have agreed to receive them and second, make sure they have an option to opt-out.
Implement post-contact questionnaires
There’s little point in making use of SMS marketing for customer service if you’re not aware of what you’re doing right or wrong. Allow your customers an opportunity to provide feedback. Your surveys should be easy to read, short and relevant. Keep it quick or you’ll risk annoying your customers.
Don’t try to do too much with your SMSes
As excellent as SMS is for customer service, it isn’t fool proof. There are certain situations when it just doesn’t work. Examples are when campaigns are too complicated or emotional to communicate in just a few characters.
Be available all the time
Because people are accustomed to using SMS in their personal lives, they might think B2C SMS works in the same way – they might think they can use SMS at any time of the day. This is why it’s important that your SMS customer service center is fully-staffed to answer queries. If you’re not able to provide 24/7 service, make sure the hours of availability are clear.
Of course, chatbots can also be used for this purpose – in fact, Clickatell has just launched Touch – the next evolution chat-based solution for business to consumer communications. Harnessing the power of artificial intelligence chatbots, Clickatell Touch combines online chat and bot-driven interactions (including the benefits of machine learning), with workflow automation to give your customers always-on, mobile always customer service. Read more about Clickatell Touch or watch this video to see it in action.