Text messaging is a great way for people to get their point across while not getting too long-winded. Friends and family use them to stay in touch and send brief messages, but businesses can also use them in order to get feedback from their customers. Here’s why and how you should employ SMS.
SMS stands for Short Message Service though it’s commonly referred to as “text messaging.” Messages are no longer than 160 alpha-numeric characters and cannot contain images or graphics. Longer messages are automatically be split up into several parts. The vast majority of today’s cell phones support this type of text messaging.
The trick of text messaging is trying to make your point while conforming to the limitation of 160 characters. In fact, most 160 character text messages are actually 140 characters long, with the first 20 characters reserved for the sender’s name. This lets the text message work within Twitter’s standards.
Why Use SMS To Get Feedback?
Texting is a cost-effective, efficient way of getting the attention of your customers, an easy way to reach out to them. Gathering opinions and feedback is a time-consuming, laborious process, so much so that by the time the data is compiled, it may already be yesterday’s news.
Opening up texting as a means of getting customer feedback means that you make a rapid, meaningful, real-time connection with your customer base. Their opinions will be fresh and hot out of the oven, enabling you to act upon their feedback and suggestions with minimal turnaround time.
Different Methods Of SMS Customer Feedback
Here are four different ways that a business can use customers’ texting as a means of getting feedback. After you check them out, go on over to the article “SMS Surveys To Satisfy Customers” for further elaboration.
Determining Product Preference. If you’re torn between which of three products you should really push this week, why not let the customers decide? Send out a single question asking which product they’d like to see featured on sale, with the reply being a number that corresponds to the respective product. This increases the likelihood that customers will actually purchase it, as well as indirectly letting them know that it will be available at your business soon!
Contests And Prize Giveaways
Everyone likes contests, especially if they have a good chance of winning something. This option is also a good way to see if anyone’s paying attention. Send out a question and offer a prize such as free tickets or merchandise to the first six correct responses. For instance, if you own a sporting goods store, having a sports trivia question would be rather fitting.
Asking For Product Feedback
This option involves a little more participation from the customer, so don’t be surprised if it doesn’t get back the same rate of return as the others. Send out a text message with a link to a product or service that you offer, and ask customers to take a look at it, and let you know their opinion on it, especially regarding whether they’d buy it or not. The big plus this one has going for it is that most people love to be asked for their opinion.
Talk To The Boss
Offer customers the chance to engage in a private, SMS-based chat with the boss. This one potentially takes up more time, since it’s inviting customers to have a text message dialogue with you. On one hand, you run the risk of having to deal with some real jerks who will use the anonymity to really let their inner idiot out. But on the other hand, you could end up forging some solid, loyal customer relationships. After all, customers do want to be made to feel like they’re actual people, not just a sales figure.
Whatever ways you choose to employ, it’s important to take advantage of SMS in building better customer relations. For the amount of effort it takes, the payoff is more than worth it.