There is growing consumer demand for a two-way conversation with brands. Traditional advertising only permits one-way traffic and consumers are growing impatient with the lack of information and understanding of products they are buying.

Properly placed SMS Marketing helps bridge that gap.

Today’s consumers want a personalized experience. Personalization is the new branding. The digital age has turned the heads of consumers to the possibilities of improved customer service. Not only do modern consumers demand a better service, they expect it.

Therefore, consumers are not afraid to interact with brands. On the contrary, PR Daily found that 63% of consumers want brands to treat them like “friends”. Yet the majority of consumers do not feel retailers or customer service providers have ever communicated with them in a way that made them feel respected.

Most consumers feel brands are intrusive. When brands have attempted personalized marketing, customers have reported they felt uncomfortable. One of the issues is that people are not knowingly providing brands with the data they used to communicate with them.

Is a two-way conversation personalization?

Personalized marketing relies heavily on acquiring accurate data and creating customer profiles. Each of your customers is then placed in a corresponding categories. Subsequently, transparency is key. As the issue with privacy policy rages on, expect tighter controls to be put in place following the fallout of the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica fiasco.

Companies have more success with personalization when they make it easier for customers to obtain information. Customers have individual questions and broad-sweeping content like FAQ’s that cover multiple questions takes too long.

Q&A’s best accomplish through communication channels that encourage two-way conversation. Email, SMS, phone, virtual assistants and messenger apps are the best options. An article published on TechCrunch reveals that 66% of consumers want brands to contact them through SMS.

Text messaging services resolve multiple problems surrounding personalized marketing. Before brands can contact customers via text, marketers have to get permission. Customers opt-in to receive texts. Providing you do not sell personal information to third-parties, personalized marketing is an effective way of strengthening relationships with customers.

Using SMS to collect valuable data

Firstly, once customers have signed up to receive information and offers from a brand, you can incorporate the channel into other marketing efforts.

By establishing the benefits of a two-way conversation, marketers should be looking to acquire consumer data so that you can provide a better service for your customers.

SMS Marketing is an effective communication channel for data collection. Over 90% of text messages are opened, and the response rate of SMS is higher than other two-way channels. By sending surveys, customers questionnaires and polls via SMS you can gradually compile relevant data about your customers.

There are several ways to create two-way conversations. For example, if the channels are available to customers in the first instance, they will naturally use them. However, in the majority of cases, brands need to take the initiative. Here are five options:

1. Relevancy

Digital consumers only want to receive relevant ads. If you send too many misplaced ads, customers will opt-out of your SMS Marketing. Make a note of purchases, searches and views of each individual customer.

2. Customer expectations

In short, It’s important to know what a customer expects from your business. Customers are willing to answer if they have a suggestion because in doing so they know they can expect to receive a superior shopping experience.

3. Grow your customer base

In hyper-competitive markets, building a loyal customer base is critical for sustainable growth. Two-way conversations help brands build bonds with customers, and because SMS Marketing is a highly personalized channel of communication, the strategy contributes to the emotional connection you can build with customers.

4. Offer assistance

Studies reveal that between 55-80% of shopping carts are abandoned. The average conversion rate of a website is between 2.35% and 5.31%. It’s impossible for brands to know why customers visit a website without converting.

Firing off a quick text message offering to help encourages customers to get in touch with their questions. In other words customers just want to know more about a product before making a purchasing decision.

Furthermore, they are more inclined to buy from brands that help them reach a decision.

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