To go with Asia-telecom-SMS-technology-Internet by Martin Abbugao
This photo, taken on June 21, 2012, shows a person using a mobile phone touch screen keypad to write a text message in Singapore. Text messaging, the humble telecoms service that turned into a global phenomenon, is under threat from free smartphone services and operators need to find alternative revenue streams, analysts say.  AFP PHOTO / ROSLAN RAHMAN        (Photo credit should read ROSLAN RAHMAN/AFP/GettyImages)

Texting could save customer relationships

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Ovum and Tyntec have partnered on a new study that indicates mobile, specifically texting and chat apps, could save brands’ customer relationships. According to the data about half of consumers surveyed say they ‘are interested’ in texting options for customer service.

Why text? Researchers surveyed more than 1,000 consumers and found that speed of communication is becoming a bigger factor for consumers . 80% say their top priority is reaching a customer service agent while 74% say the speed of resolution is a leading factor for them. Mobile, when done correctly, answers that speed question, and also allows consumers to be reached when it is convenient for them.

That said, brands don’t necessarily need a brand-specific app for customer communications.

“Brands that focus solely on developing their own mobile app for interacting with their customers may well become victims of app fatigue in that, no matter how rich an experience it provides, most consumers now need to be convinced to download yet another app,” said Pamela Clark-Dickson, lead analyst, Digital Communications and Social Networking, Consumer Services, Ovum. “Brands should consider adopting an omni-channel strategy for customer care, which would enable them to use a mixture of communications services during each individual interaction with the consumer, including mobile messaging as well as apps.”

Other interesting findings from the report include:
• 56% of consumers want the ability to text back to customer service agents via SMS but many brands only offer one-way texting (brand to consumer)
• 54% of consumers are interested in chat app options to contact etailers
• 18% are already using chat apps for customer service, 50% say they ‘are interested’ in chat apps for customer service

Source: BizReport, Article by Kristina Knight (