As contact centers have evolved into omni-channel hubs for numerous businesses in a variety of industries, text message marketing solutions have become as common as voice calls. Text messaging is a faster, more efficient way to communicate with customers. Many customers prefer texting over the phone, so those businesses that leverage text messaging have an advantage over those that don’t. If you’re not using text message marketing in your call center, LiveVox can help you get that set up fast.
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Agents who have access to texting within the contact center often use SMS for marketing activities, sales, and customer service. Customers get faster response times and spend less time waiting to speak with someone. Texting options also lower call volume, which helps relieve the pressure agents often feel to quickly get off the phone. The convenience that SMS brings enhances customer and agent interactions on both sides.
Despite all the benefits that texting can bring, agents can become frustrated if they aren’t receiving any responses. You might find yourself wondering why your contact center doesn’t see any substantial changes when using an SMS tool. By revising your current SMS practices, you can identify areas for improvement. Below you’ll find a list of 5 things you could tweak in your SMS approach to see better results.
Sending text messages too late
It’s important to consider a customer’s time zone when sending them a text message. Since contact centers often work with customers all over the country, it’s easy for an agent to accidentally send a customer a text during dinner time when it’s only late afternoon for the agent. This type of interruption can damage the customer relationship, causing them to develop a negative perception of your company. Call center software platforms that integrate contact controls can prevent agents from accidentally contacting a customer too early or too late. LiveVox’s unified call center software will automatically prevent agents from sending text messages or making phone calls to customers outside of business hours. This is especially useful when sending out mass text messages. List segmentation can be automatically done based upon time zone. This ensures that agents are reaching out to clients in an appropriate time frame.
Sounding too casual and unprofessional
Since we communicate via text with friends and family on a regular basis, it can be far too easy to fall into texting customers using the same tone. Customers may find too-casual language off-putting, and this can leave a negative impact on your company. It’s important for agents to continue to show professionalism no matter the channel of communication. Cross-channel monitoring and integrated analytics make it possible for continuous agent monitoring. LiveVox’s monitoring features also capture every single text message interaction. Supervisors can be notified in real-time when a high-risk interaction occurs. This allows them to intervene in time and prevent a negative customer experience. They can also identify those agents that may need extra training and support so that they can deliver professional customer support every time.
Not following up
Although a customer may quickly respond to a text, overwhelmed agents may not always catch every single message coming through. If a customer asks the agent to call them later, but the agent forgets to follow up, the contact center can lose potential business. In traditional marketing campaigns, follow-ups are important even for those customers who didn’t show any initial interest. However, since agents may be contacting over 100 individuals a day, it can be easy for a follow up reminder to slip by. Automation tools have made marketing campaigns a hands off activity that runs in the background. Agents can customize these workflows to ensure that every lead gets a follow up. Each touchpoint can be set to run at a designated time. For example, if a client opens but fails to respond to a text, an automated marketing tool can send a follow up message after 3 days. This ensures that no potential customers slip through the cracks.
Sending excessive texts
Spamming your customers with texts will not make them want to contact you. Sometimes agents make the mistake of sending customers too many text messages in a short period of time. This can especially happen if an agent doesn’t see a response right away. However, it’s important to remember that sending excessive text messages isn’t professional. Customers could perceive the behavior as intrusive, damaging the image of your company. A unified call center software platform can help prevent this problem. The LiveVox platform tracks data from all sources of communication. This can prevent excessive communication attempts across all channels. If an agent texts a customer twice in a day, the platform records this history so that the next agent that opens the customer’s account would be aware. It can also automatically prevent excessive customer attempts with customizable controls.
Failing to leverage other channels of communication
Having several touch points is important. However, spreading them out across various channels is also beneficial. Some customers may not be avid texters, so it’s important to follow up with them through another avenue. If a customer has a payment due, an agent could send them a text message reminder. Sending them an email reminder helps ensure that the customer sees the message. Many times web chat interactions provide customers with valuable information. One example is with tech support. A customer may use web chat to troubleshoot a problem. A help desk agent may provide instructions through the chat. Once disconnected, agents may send a transcript of the conversation to the customer via email for added convenience. If a customer runs into the same problem again, they can quickly refer back to that transcript.
Text messaging can make an agent’s job much easier, making them much more efficient and productive during their shifts. However, it’s important for contact center agents to learn best text messaging practices to maximize their advantages to the fullest extent.