Featured image for sending announcements and updates to customers and clients via sms notifications.

SMS Notifications: Send Announcements and Updates to Customers

Your relationship with customers is one of the most important parts of a successful business. When customer service was just a smile and a “thank you”, the business-customer relationship dynamic was fairly one dimensional.

It wasn’t necessary to know your customers that well, and they didn’t feel the need to know the businesses they shopped with that well. That dynamic has certainly evolved, and now the relationship you have with your customers is the focus, not just a byproduct.

Another change is the importance of our mobile devices. We use them for communicating in just about every relationship we have, and our relationship with our customers is no exception. SMS is an empowering tool that gives us almost instant access to your customers, but like any good tool, it helps if you know how to use it.

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Why and when to use SMS for customer updates?

Updating customers with text messages is a great way to keep them updated. However, it’s important to know why and when you should message your customers. In consent based marketing, it’s crucial that you have a balanced approach to sending announcements to your customers. Here are some reasons you might send updates to your customers.

Provide transaction status

When we spend money, most of us want confirmation that we spent the amount we intended to spend and that the transaction was a success. Transaction updates are a confirmation that the order was placed and a receipt once the order is fulfilled. This gives your customer peace of mind. They know you will honor the transaction and that they have proof of purchase.

Share expected delivery times

Most of us have an uneasy feeling when things are left up in the air or unknown. It provides a sense of calmness when we know what to expect. Sending your customer updates on the expected delivery times will reassure them that you haven’t forgotten them or their order.

Provide order status

Generally, people understand delays when the lines of communication remain open and they’re getting honest information. When your customer’s order status changes, a simple text to alert them lets them know what to expect. Plus, it assures them that you are following through with completing their order.

Safety and logistics

There are times when you need to send customers event updates. Communicating about things that concern customers’ safety or logistics of an event is important.

An example of a text regarding safety is warning customers about their potential for sun exposure and high temperatures during an outdoor event. Reminding customers to wear sunscreen, prepare to hydrate, and the location of cooling stations tells customers you care about them and their safety.

An example of a text regarding logistics: alerting customers to the parking areas for an event. Another logistics example is texting customers periodically about wait times and availability.

Increase conversion rates

A major benefit of contacting customers via text is incredible read rates. This means customers almost always read your messages. Since texts include links, videos, pictures, and attachments, you can drive traffic to other areas. If you’ve experienced slow traffic, a well-timed text entices customers to stop by and spend some money.

Sales and marketing advantage

Since customers consent to receive text messages, you have a receptive audience that chose to be included in your marketing efforts.

Permission is a privilege, and customers expect added value for the privilege of texting them. Don’t forget to reward them with discounts that only they can receive. Respect them by limiting the frequency without ghosting them.

How to send SMS updates to customers using TextSanity

  1. Log in to your TextSanity account, log in to your shipping platform, log in to Zapier
  2. Create a zap between your shipping platform and TextSanity account
  3. Send a test zap, ensure information is transferred over correctly
  4. Create a template message in your TextSanity account for shipping updates
  5. To create a SMS template: Log in to your TextSanity account, go to “More Tools” at the top, then choose “Templates”, click “+ Template” in the top right of the screen, name your template and composed generic shipping message, click “Save” at the bottom right of your screen
  6. Set up notifications in TextSanity for when information is zapped from your shipping application.
  7. To set up notifications: Log in to your TextSanity account, go to “Account” at the top right of the screen, then choose “Settings” at the menu on the left of the screen, scroll down to “Notifications”, choose the notifications you want to set up
  8. When you are notified of a zap, log in to your TextSanity account, choose the correct customer from your “Contacts” list, this will take you to the “Personal Details” page, click “Send Message”, click on the template icon at the bottom of the message box, choose the shipping template, insert the correct customer information, click “Send”

Things to consider

Remember texting customers is a privilege. There are rules to keep in mind to ensure you’re reaching customers correctly.

Always approach texts as if you were the recipient. Read your texts objectively. Put yourself in customers’ shoes. Make sure information is valuable and correct.

Here are some things to consider before you hit send.

Be genuine

Texting your customers is part of the business-customer relationship that you want to cultivate. As with any relationship, be yourself. People can detect if you’re being genuine and authentic, even if you’re a business.

In today’s increasingly conscientious society, authenticity is more important than ever before. Authenticity suggests honesty. Honesty suggests trustworthiness. Trustworthiness is a building block to a lasting relationship.

Prioritize efficiency

No one wants their time wasted, but they also don’t want to be left scratching their head in confusion. Remember to keep texts simple, short, and to the point. Clear and concise communication keeps customers from feeling like you’re too pushy.

It’s vital your texts are readable. Test texts out on yourself. If you’re using links, test them.

Lastly, an efficient text is also a timely text. Sending an alert at the right time is a skill of its own. Learn your customers and their habits. Reach out to them at the appropriate time to make sure texts do their job.

Secure and reliable

Never share customers information with anyone else. Customers need to feel that their information is secure and protected.

It’s also important to be true to your word. When a customer gives you permission to contact them, they’re relying on you to text only about what they agreed to. Stay true to that agreement.

Utilize TextSanity’s tools

Keeping up with your business and your customer relationships is a big task. The service TextSanity provides allows you to learn more about customers, schedule texts, and set up auto responses.

The takeaway

Your relationship with your customers is increasingly important. SMS notifications help strengthen that relationship by sending announcements and updates to customers.

Adding value to your customers adds value to their loyalty and your revenue. Just remember to be respectful, reliable, and genuine in your communication. You’re somebody’s customer too. Think about the information you want to know for yourself and then make that communication happen for your customer.