“I’m running late.” – “See you at 8pm.” – “Where shall we meet?”

Quick messages, which need fast delivery and a quick response.

We now send more than 150bn text messages per year in the UK (Ofcom, 2013), so we’ve come to rely on them, with the average consumer looking at their phone around 150 times a day (Adtruth, 2013).

So text messaging is a logical place to start for organisations looking to improve their customer engagement.

But what exactly are the benefits that can be gained by using mobile messaging to communicate with customers?

1)    Deliver more effective communications: 98% of text messages are read, vs. 29% of Tweets, 20% of emails and just 12% of Facebook posts.

2)    See immediate results: 90% of texts are read within three minutes (The Mobile Marketer, 2012) and 43% of people who respond to mobile marketing campaigns do so within 15 minutes (Dynmark, 2013).

3)    Increase engagement rates: Texts produce engagement rates six to eight times higher than email (in terms of % read). The average click-through rate for SMS is 19%, vs. 4% for email (Slicktext, 2014).

4)    Improve customer service and reduce churn: Follow up a customer interaction with an SMS survey to improve satisfaction and quickly respond to any negative feedback. 31% of surveys sent via SMS have an average response time of just over five minutes (Pure 360, 2013).

5)    Increase sales: SMS vouchers are ten times more likely to be redeemed than those appearing in print. And the Royal Bank of Scotland saw a 10% uplift in customers taking out loans after they used Messaging Services from O2 to enhance the application process.

6)    Track and learn from your campaigns: Unlike traditional forms of marketing, digital campaigns run from a single messaging platform are fully traceable. You can monitor and measure results by campaign and by channel – helping to improve ROI. What’s more, by using a messaging platform, undelivered messages can be reconfigured and automatically sent out via a different channel.

7)    Meet customer expectations: Consumers want to engage with brands on their terms and through their chosen channel. O2 and Conlumino research in 2013 found that retailers are missing out on £12bn by not engaging with customers through digital. An integrated platform for SMS, MMS, email, voice and in-app push messaging means you can meet customer expectations and provide relevant, timely and engaging communications.

8)    Minimise missed appointments and deliveries: 12% of UK deliveries fail first time, costing £850m a year (IMRG, 2013). And missed appointments cost the NHS £270m a year. SMS reminders can dramatically cut both. For example, health trusts across the UK have seen a reduction in non-attendance rates of 25–30% following an SMS rollout.

9)    Save time and money, and reduce inbound calls: By integrating a messaging platform with back-office systems, such as CRM, order management or billing, our customers have cut costs by up to 70% through automation. Further savings can be made by introducing SMS to reduce inbound calls to contact centres. Sending proactive messages at key customer trigger points has helped our customers achieve an average 20% decrease in calls in the first three months, and improve their customer experience scoring.

At O2 we’re big fans of using mobile messaging, with over half a billion interactions with our customers last year. We also work with over 100 enterprises and public sector organisations to help them use mobile messaging to engage their end customers.

Share your own ideas about what else businesses could be doing through mobile messaging by leaving a comment below. You can find out more about what Messaging Services can offer your business here or call us on 01235 433 507. 

Journalists can contact the Virgin Media O2 press office on:
press@virginmediao2.co.uk 01753 565656
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