What is conversational SMS marketing?
Conversational SMS is like conventional SMS in that it is a text messaging technique. Marketers use it to communicate with their customers via text messages.
Conversational SMS differs from conventional SMS in that it is 2 way SMS. It mimics real-life conversations between people with back-and-forth responses to your customer.
SMS conversations are becoming increasingly popular among marketers because it has proven themselves to be a great way to improve customer service and support. Using conversational SMS, businesses can provide a quick and convenient way for most customers to ask questions, make appointments, or receive updates.
What is the difference between conversational SMS and traditional SMS?
But isn't that just what chatbots do?
Not exactly. There is an important difference between the algorithms for chatbots and the algorithms for SMS conversations. Chatbots basically use words as cues. They automatically send out a response that most of the time matches a term the customer uses.
If a customer types in, for example, "Do you have the blouse in red?" a chatbot can respond with the item you are offering in red. But conversational AI would scan your records with that customer and also recommend a blouse in red that complements the skirt they bought last time.
Traditional SMS responds to words. Conversational SMS responds to people. Occasionally, human operators are necessary when AI stalls. But you can automate much more of the process of connecting with returning or potential customers with SMS conversations than with traditional SMS text messaging.
Conversational SMS gives you more options for meeting customer needs. Conversational SMS provides the information your customer seeks, while making life easier for your customer service staff.
So, conversational SMS is the same thing as two-way SMS?
There is a fuzzy distinction between conversational SMS and two-way SMS.
Both methods can be automated, but SMS conversations can be much more automated.
The major limitation of 2 way SMS is that it is activated by keyword. If the customer misspells the keyword, uses a synonym for the keyword, or defines what they want in slightly different terms than the system is set up to expect, two way SMS will ask for additional inputs.
Conversational SMS can get stuck, too. But when this happens, conversational SMS will send the conversation to a human agent, along with all the relevant records of your interactions with this customer to ensure outstanding service.
Why is conversational SMS important to leverage?
Here are two big reasons to leverage conversational SMS in your next marketing campaign:
- Conversational SMS marketing messages have a 98% open rate, according to Mobile Marketing Watch.
- Conversational SMS marketing messages have an average response rate of 45%, according to SMS Comparison.
SMS conversations get your customer's attention. And then it makes it easier for you to make the sale.