Text messaging is a powerful tool to build and maintain strong relationships. Today, when people are feeling isolated and distant, this is more important than ever. Seamless and immediate communication can make all the difference for your company and customer communication during emergencies.
Why Text Messaging?
The past few weeks we have all gotten bombarded with emails from companies detailing their response to the Coronavirus and actions they are taking. Our inboxes are full of impersonal communications that most of us don’t have the time to read. And cold phone calls add even more noise to the commotion.
Text messaging has already emerged as the preferred channel of communication for 69% of customers, even in times of non-crisis. Now more than ever it’s the best way to reach out and stay in contact. It’s quick, personal and easy for customers to respond to.
Examples of Text Messaging Engagement
Despite current circumstances, businesses are finding ways to continue engaging with their customers using text messaging.
- The National Health Service (NHS) launched a text message support service for people self-isolating with suspected coronavirus symptoms.They will get regular check-ins asking about their wellbeing and support will be provided to those who might need it during their isolation period.
- Many businesses are having to reschedule appointments. Instead of having to call customers individually, they are able to text and quickly reschedule using automated text messaging.
- Universities are letting students know updates on campus procedures, closings, re-openings and other important information in real-time.
- Health appointments are moving from in-person to online when possible via telehealth portals. Clinics are using text messaging to text video links for providers to connect with patients virtually.
- Staffing agencies are updating candidates on job openings and interview postponements, plans for hiring in the near future, and other relevant HR information.
- Restaurants are texting promotional and discount codes to encourage pickup and delivery.
- Workout studios are sending notifications about new services such as virtual classes.
- Libraries and children’s performers are notifying the community about virtual storytimes and online performances.
Text Messaging Features for Crisis Communication
In times of crisis, relaying important information as fast as possible is paramount. Text messaging provides a platform that allows for instant communication while still maintaining a personal experience. The following are features that ensure quick, safe, personalized communication to your customers.
- Assured Compliance. In times of emergency, you shouldn’t be worrying about compliance. Important updates and emergency communications are more important than worrying about following every regulation and guideline.
- Keywords and Automated Messaging. You can set up keywords that will trigger automated responses to frequently asked questions. During times of crisis companies can get bombarded with questions. These keywords will help mitigate the flood, not overwhelm reps, and get customers answers quickly.
- Text Message Templates. By using templates you can ensure consistency across your emergency communications. Whether it’s customer service reps quickly answering questions or sales reps informing leads and customers about changes in your business model, you’ll be saying the same thing to everyone. When you’re moving quickly and trying to communicate time sensitive information, this helps to make sure mixed messages don’t happen.
- Group Messaging. When you need to get a message out to multiple people at once, group messaging is the fast and effective way to do so. This feature allows for crisis communication on a mass level and also for communication around business changes and promotions such as changes in hours, promotions, etc.
The Bottom Line
With text messaging you’ll be able to reach your customers quickly and share up-to-date, factual emergency information as needed. You will:
- Send emergency notifications quickly and effectively. Since people read their messages, your audience will get your information.
- Quickly update customers about any changes in business hours or procedures.
- Creatively pivot your business to adapt to new rules and guidelines and let customers know quickly.
- Ensure a personal touch throughout all of your communication with customers.
Your audience will appreciate the thoughtful and immediate emergency updates you provide with text messaging.
Want to see how SMS-Magic Converse helps clients achieve all of this with text messaging? Reach out and we’d be happy to give you a personal tour and share examples from our clients!