95% of Americans now own a mobile phone, and 77% own a smartphone.
What’s more is that the average smartphone user checks their device 52 times a day.
This creates an unprecedented opportunity to reach customers anytime and anywhere.
Given the near-universal adoption of mobile technology among modern consumers, mobile messaging has become an essential method of contacting customers.
Mobile messaging strategies are a simple to implement means of enhancing your engagement, customer service, and marketing.
Low costs and automation potential make mobile messaging an area that levels the playing field between small businesses and their larger competitors.
Benefits of Mobile Messaging
Mobile messaging enables your business to be proactive in attracting and engaging customers.
A slick website and active social media presence are both vital and effective ways to boost engagement, but they still rely on the customer making the first move to find your site or page.
Messaging establishes direct communication with individual customers, creating a more personal and tailored experience.
Mobile allows you to deliver time-sensitive or personalized offers and deals that increase brand loyalty.
Let’s look at three of the most effective mobile messaging tactics for small businesses:
Texting allows you to contact customers wherever they are, even if they have no internet connection.
Coupled with the fact that this is also how they receive their personal messages, this means there is a 90% chance customers will read your message within three minutes.
SMS sent through mass text messaging have a low cost per message and let you get straight to the point without spending huge amounts of time creating a lengthy pitch or images. A simple few lines explaining the deal along with the discount code or link is usually the most effective approach.
SMS loyalty schemes have a satisfaction rate of over 90%.
Because of this, you can send out highly time-sensitive offers that prompt immediate action.
Local businesses can take advantage of this by combining their marketing texts with geofencing to send offers to customers while they are in the vicinity.
Since recipients can open texts wherever they are, this also enhances the reach of referral campaigns.
Customers can open and read your message while socializing with their friends and family.
On top of its marketing potential, SMS also has a great deal of utility in customer service.
Customers no longer need to find time to call, potentially waiting on hold first, to contact you with their queries and complaints.
Instead, they can text and continue the conversation whenever and wherever it is convenient for them.
This also increases the scalability of your customer service team, as they can handle multiple conversations simultaneously instead of one at a time.
Automated texting is a reliable and hassle-free way to remind customers they have a delivery on the way, an upcoming appointment or a service due to expire.
On top of the added convenience for your customers, this also improves the efficiency of your business with fewer missed appointments, redeliveries and lapsed customers.
Fylde Property frequently scheduled viewings where the client was late or did not show up, costing valuable time and lost opportunities.
SMS allowed them to establish more direct communication with clients and cut down on missed appointments.
Instant messaging allows you to connect directly to customers on any of the major social media platforms, most notably Facebook, which continues to dominate the social media landscape.
Almost everyone is on Facebook and uses it regularly, so it can be an effective platform on which to offer instant one-on-one communication.
Not only does this let your customers engage with your business and have their queries answered at their convenience, it also provides an easy avenue for complaints.
Whether it is posted to your social media page, a review site or your online store, customers are more likely to make their issues with your product or business public when you haven’t made it easy enough to get in touch.
Instant messaging improves your ability to resolve complaints and create satisfied customers before things escalate and damage your reputation.
Chatbots can handle simple queries even when you have nobody online.
Fiesta Mexicana, a restaurant in Spokane, Washington, used Facebook Messenger with a chatbot to offer coupons.
The result was a conversion rate of nearly 20%!
Push notifications are a great way to maintain the engagement of existing customers and re-engage lapsed customers.
If your business’s app is still on their phone, you can send them push notifications from it.
Remember that notifications can be disabled, however, so users will block this channel of communication if you bombard them with irrelevant marketing.
Focus on sending notifications that are highly personalized to the products and services each customer uses and think about when would be the best time for them to receive your message.
Jumia, an African online marketplace, used push notifications to reduce the number of abandoned carts.
Push notifications were nine times more effective than email at getting customers to recover their carts.
This demonstrates how successful at recovering lost customers push notifications can be when used appropriately.
Mobile is now the primary technology we use to communicate in our daily lives.
Businesses of all sizes need to adapt to the mobile-first world, especially small businesses, as it offers a chance to compete with larger organizations on even ground.
An effective mobile messaging strategy focuses on providing convenience, value and direct communication to customers in order to achieve long-term engagement.