Combat “app for that” fatigue with integrated text messaging
It probably won’t surprise you to hear that the abandon rate for mobile apps is currently more than 95%. Users typically download an app, try it out once or twice and never touch it again. People, myself included, don’t want to have to download a new application for every product or service they interact with—be it the hotel they’re staying at, the insurance carrier they use, restaurants they frequent, etc.
With 81% of the American population using an SMS enabled phone, today’s mobile web users exceed desktop computer users. Those users are concerned about the security of their personal information, and text messaging has a variety of practical applications for keeping data secure.
Here are a few sample companies I’ve dreamed up (entirely fictitious) to give you an idea of the types of communications made possible by integrating text messaging into your software capabilities. These might be helpful as you evaluate how your business could utilize text messaging to better interact with customers.
Use Case #1: Dropship
Dropship is an on-demand shipping company specializing in end-user priority and 1-day delivery.
Business Challenge: Recipients move around throughout the day and drivers must quickly locate them so that packages are delivered on time.
SMS Solution: When a person signs up to have something shipped, they provide a mobile number and then receive text messages regarding the delivery date and time. The recipient responds back via SMS to let the driver know where they will be throughout the day and the app then auto-texts the recipient 30 minutes before delivery to confirm the location and time.
Use Case #2: Popflix
Popflix is a streaming service for movies, TV shows and user-generated content. The company encourages family accounts.
Business Challenge: Users share their account information and someone intentionally or unintentionally changes the password, locking out the “account owner,” typically the bill-paying user on the account.
SMS Solution: Popflix has programming built into its backend that detects when account information changes (such as a password update) and then automatically sends an SMS to the account owner to make them aware of the change. At that point, the account owner can reply via text and report if their account has been compromised. If it is, then Popflix automatically locks the account and prevents further changes until the account owner logs in and verifies the proper password information.
Use Case #3: CashGrab
CashGrab is a modern bank that’s exclusively online, without physical brick & mortar locations.
Business Challenge: As a bank, security is extremely important and CashGrab wants to provide an extra layer of security for its customers.
SMS Solution: CashGrab uses text messaging to implement two-factor authentication. When a user logs in from a new device or new location, which CashGrab tracks by IP address, CashGrab texts the user a verification code that they must enter—in addition to their account password—before they can access their account.
Use Case #4: Dine.In
Dine.In creates custom websites for restaurants. People can schedule reservations through the site as well as food delivery.
Business Challenge: Dine.In wants to offer frequent customers something special as a reward for using the service.
SMS Solution: Dine.In keeps track of user behaviors and, for example, when someone makes their third reservation online, Dine. In texts them 30 minutes prior to that reservation with a special coupon code for 20% off. This text serves as both a reminder to keep the appointment as well as a small token of appreciation for customer loyalty.
Use Case #5: Flyway
Flyway is a modern travel agency that integrates all travel details into one application including hotel, flight, rental car, etc. (Many websites like this exist today.)
Business Challenge: When a customer has to make a change to a rental car, for example, they must log in and verify their information across multiple portals including the Flyway site as well as the rental car site, etc.
SMS Solution: Flyway offers a mobile app and within the mobile app, there is a “call for support” button. When a user hits that button, all of their information is automatically sent to the agent through the mobile app. The agent then makes an informed, proactive call to the customer and resolves the issue as quickly as possible with no further account verification required. The user receives a text message from that same phone number confirming all the details.
How does your software use text messaging to engage with customers?
We’d love to hear about it so leave us your comments or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.