All Messaging is Not Created Equal

05/25/18

 

My pharmacy sent me a text message to tell me I had a prescription ready for pick up. I was directed to respond with “YES” to complete the interaction. But, I had another question for the pharmacist and couldn’t use that SMS text to ask it. I still had to make a phone call. While the basic SMS messaging my pharmacy uses is helpful for them, it falls short of how I, as a customer, want to interact. I want an easy messaging channel I can use to interact with my pharmacist, or any other business, instead of calling or emailing them.  

Changing Customer Expectations 

Next time you’re in a restaurant, mall or other public place, look around. How many people are looking at their phones? Phones have become our gateway to connect everything in our lives. While we still call them “phones,” fewer and fewer people actually use them to make phone calls. They prefer to use messaging to interact with just about everyone. Over 6 billion messages are sent in the United States every day. On average, Americans message twice as much as they call, with 97% of adults messaging on a weekly basis. This will only accelerate as millennials continue to become the dominate consumer group.  

Businesses can enjoy a strong return on their investment in offering a messaging channel. The key to is to invest in a two-way messaging channel that allows businesses and their customers to interact in an easy, conversational manner.  

Benefits of Two-Way Messaging Channel  

Increased Satisfaction 

A two-way messaging channel is faster and easier. Employees can only manage one phone call at a time while a messaging channel allows employees to manage multiple conversations at one time. Interactions are also quicker, increasing employee productivity by as much as 25%. 

The speed of a messaging channel also increases customer satisfaction by as much as 7%. Messaging is familiar to customers and reduces the friction and aggravation of a being put on hold, transferred multiple times, filling out a web form, or waiting for an email response. 

Increased Engagement 

Two-way messaging increases engagement between businesses and their customers. Customers read about 96% of their text messages and are more likely to  stay engaged with a business when they can easily ask about products or services throughout the purchase process. The ability to easily ask questions after a purchase, increases satisfaction with the purchase and the overall brand.  

Personalized Interactions 

Businesses can use messaging to send personalized offers or information about products and services directly to customers’ phones. For example, my pharmacist could send information on my medication and follow up to see if I have any questions after I started taking it. Relevant personal messaging creates relationships with customers and can increase trust and loyalty.

Messaging is the way customers want to communicate. By making messaging truly interactive, you make it easy for customers to interact with you in the manner they prefer. 

 


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