How to Use Enterprise Text Messaging Software (with Tips)
We’ve all felt it: the weight of too many tasks, too many emails to respond to, and not enough time in the day. Your clients and prospects are no different. They’re buried, too. In fact, research shows more than 306 billion emails were sent and received each day in 2020, making it challenging for marketers and business owners to get attention.
Enterprise text messaging software is changing the way that companies do business. Many organizations, from major brands to local businesses, have begun using text messages to communicate with their customers and prospects, as it is a great strategy for building customer loyalty without getting a message lost in the Inbox.
Not sure what enterprise text messaging software is or how to leverage it the right way? This article will explain how enterprise texting works as part of marketing campaigns and customer service efforts, what kinds of messages you can send, and the benefits of using this strategy. You’ll even learn a few tips to create awesome text messages.
What Is Enterprise Text Messaging Software?
Enterprise text messaging software is a type of software that helps businesses communicate at scale with their customers via text message. It is designed to make it easy for companies to send texts, and receive feedback or replies from prospects or clients in real-time.
The best platforms will allow you to send thousands of notifications, reminders, or promotions at once, while also giving your customer service reps and other staff the ability to engage one-on-one with customers. They can answer questions, address issues, and provide instant, personalized customer service. The flexibility to engage in bulk SMS texting and one-to-one conversations while keeping track of it all in one platform is a game-changer.
Long Code Messages vs. Short Code Messages
With the right enterprise text messaging software, you can send long code messages and short code messages in a unified thread so each team member can see what has already been said and by whom. You can dramatically improve the customer experience when you eliminate the need for the customer to reiterate their issue every time they interact with your business.
What is the difference between a long code and a short code message? A long code message comes from a standard 10-digit phone number. It is what your recipient will see on their mobile phone.
A short code message is sent from a five- or six-digit number and is what will show up on your recipients’ mobile phones. There are different types of short codes. Shared short codes are those you share with thousands of other organizations. It is less expensive than the other options, but they come with risks. Most carriers are eliminating short codes because of their spammy nature.
A dedicated short code is one that your company, and only your company, owns. There are two types of short codes: vanity short codes and non-vanity short codes. Vanity codes allow you to create your own short code as long as no one else is using that same code. With non-vanity short codes, you choose from a list of available numbers.
The Benefits of Text Messaging Software
Texting is an easy-to-use, quick, and effective way to engage audiences. You can use texting for everything from customer engagement and lead generation to event promotion and reminders. You can automate messages to send to a specified audience at a certain day and time, or you can text directly with customers in a one-to-one conversation.
Companies use text messaging software because people read texts more than they do emails and are much more likely to engage with your company via SMS texting. With emails, your recipients have to go into their email and filter through hundreds of emails. Good luck getting a significant number of people to read yours.
Texting is different. People check their phones an average of 160 times a day and can see a text without even unlocking their phones. They can read and respond to text messages quickly, easily refer to a historical text message thread, and not clog up an Inbox.
Here are a few other things you can do with enterprise text messaging software:
- Get in touch with prospects and customers quickly on their preferred channel.
- Send out general or personalized messages to your audience at any time.
- Stay top of mind and build a relationship with your audience.
- Be a part of the conversation happening on their phones.
Tips for Using Enterprise Text Messaging Software
Enterprise text messaging is a separate channel and has its own rules. You can’t approach it the same way you would with an email campaign where you have room to elaborate. Below are some tips to make sure you optimize text messages to get the most out of your efforts:
- Make sure recipients have opted into your program.
- Include “Text Stop to End” in at least one message every 30 days.
- Keep your messages short and to the point.
- Double-check messages for relevance, tone, grammar, and punctuation.
- Develop templates for regular messages and scripts for customer service.
- Be positive, personal, and professional.
- Avoid bullet points or other lists, as they typically lose formatting and are difficult to read.
- Use links to direct recipients to longer-form content on your website or landing page.
Remember that your recipient will likely only give your text a glance. You want your message to grab their attention and say what it needs to say within a few seconds. The text can either be a teaser to get them to act in a certain way, such as to reply with a marketing keyword to enter a contest, or it can give them the facts quickly, as with an appointment reminder.
How to Get Started with an SMS Service Provider
You want to find a provider that has direct carrier connections as this will speed up the delivery of your messages, discourage spam, ensure your message is delivered, and save you significant costs. You also need to make sure that you never text someone who has said they do not want messages from you. Your chosen provider should maintain their own list of people who do not want marketing messages, and that list should be in an ISO 9001 cloud database for ultimate compliance assurance.
Once you choose your plan and set up your text number, you can begin using the enterprise text messaging software in minutes. Some providers offer integrations with your CRM and marketing automation software, providing you with a scalable, turnkey solution.
Be sure your provider of choice offers robust administrative controls. You want to be able to assign (and remove) access to different team members based on their position and the type of messages, such as mass texting, individual texting, and view-only texts. Someone on your team should be able to monitor texts and response times.
There are many other features to explore when vetting providers. Pricing is always a consideration, so make sure you understand all of the terms and features that come with the price tag. Providers frequently offer multiple plan options to fit your business needs and budget.
Ask about all fees; the number of messages, contacts, and keywords allowed; as well as customer service levels and CRM integrations. All of these variables will factor into the plan cost. SMS business texting is relatively inexpensive but a powerful marketing and customer service tool worth every penny.
Want to try out an industry-leading enterprise text messaging solution? Sign up for a free trial and start texting in minutes.