Texting has taken over as many people’s preferred form of communication…for both personal and business. Just think about it: When’s the last time you actually made a phone call? There’s a reason texting has taken over. It’s easier. It’s frictionless. It’s way less invasive. And it reaches the person you want to reach, right away. Phone calls can be ignored or silenced; voicemails rarely get listened to; emails disappear in cluttered inboxes. But texts show up right away and they almost always get read right away.
Why Your Business Should Be Texting
So the question is: Are you texting your customers? Here’s a look at the top six reasons you should add texting to your portfolio of customer communications.
Everybody Texts…All The Time
The numbers don’t lie. More than 90% of adults keep their phones on hand (or at least within reach) at all times. An incredible 98% of text messages reach their intended user. And 90% of texts are read within a few minutes. Right now, there’s no other form of communication this direct, immediate and effective. You should be using that to your advantage.
Texting Doesn’t Interrupt Anything
It feels less intrusive than the phone, and your customers will appreciate that. People just don’t want to talk on the phone any more, whether it’s to their lawn care company, their local pizza place or their best friend. In fact, they will go to great lengths in order to NOT make or take a phone call. They might put off calling you or make excuses not to…but responding to a text message is fast, easy and doesn’t require any talking at all.
Texting Makes Communication Easy
Texting puts people at ease. Many individuals dread having to talk on the phone to someone they don’t know, even when that person is a friendly professional. That anxiety can keep them from making or answering a phone call. Texting virtually eliminates that problem.
Texting Makes Your Business Seem More Responsive
Customers think it’s faster and more responsive – because usually, it is. One of the basics of customer service is that the faster you can respond to customer questions and concerns, the better. And the faster you can respond to a lead, the more likely you are to turn that lead into a sale. Responding to a text is generally faster and easier than writing and sending an email or waiting for a return phone call. You seem more responsive to your customers’ concerns when you can text them directly. The flip side of this is that because of this perception, it’s essential to respond to customer texts within a few minutes so they don’t feel like you are ignoring them!
With Texting, it’s All Right There
Texts provide an instant, easily accessible record. When you text your customer a service appointment reminder, it’s all RIGHT THERE for them. They don’t have hunt for a pen and paper to write it down, and then remember to keep track of that piece of paper. If they want to share the information or put it in their calendar, it’s just a matter of a few clicks. And they can easily refer back to it whenever they want.
Texting is Versatile
It can be used for hyper-targeted and mass communication messages. It’s easy to have private, one-on-one conversations with individual customers via text, and it’s easy to send a text to your entire customer base highlighting your next promotion or other important information. Text communication is incredibly versatile.
Your Pre-Texting Checklist
Of course, as with any marketing tool, it’s important to have a plan in place before you start sending out texts. A few things to consider:
- How and when will you send texts? You probably don’t want to text customers from your personal phone, and you definitely don’t want your employees texting from theirs.
- Make sure you’re following all applicable rules and regulations – such as obtaining opt-in permission from customers.
- What will you text about? Appointment scheduling, reminders and follow-ups; payment reminders; promotions and sales; upsell opportunities; responses to customer concerns?
- Create and follow company-wide best practices and make sure you thoroughly train your team. Business texting etiquette is different from personal texting etiquette. Time of day is important. Tone should be professional and friendly. Texts should be kept short and to the point. Responses should be fast, even if the initial answer is from a bot.
Spread the Word
Finally, when you’re ready to start texting, use all available channels to let your customers know they can reach you by text! Have your text-enabled number on all of your trucks and lawn posting signs and make sure to note “call or text.” When you’re putting a call to action on social media, end with “call or text us at…” Make it clear on your website with a call-out on your home page and a “text us” button for mobile users.
Investing in a business texting software solution that will help you manage all of the above is one way to make sure your company’s texts are always on-brand, on-message and on point. Even better if it works with your existing CRM software, so that you can easily share information without having to look everything up or manually input later. For example, Real Green Systems users can take advantage of the company’s partnership with Captivated, which allows direct-to-customer texting right from Service Assistant 5.
Interested in learning more about business texting software? Check out this video about Captivated that highlights how the service works.
For more information about how you can add business texting to Service Assistant 5 and help your business thrive, schedule a free demo today.