Texting used to be something you only did with your friends.
“New phone, who dis?”
Then your family members jumped on the train and started sending you messages, typically in all caps.
“GOOD LUCK ON YOUR INTERVIEW HONEY! LOVE MOM.”
And in recent years, more and more businesses have been adopting texting as a medium to engage leads and close deals.
“Hey James! This is Eli from Freefall Skydiving School. What day next week would be a good time to jump out of a plane?”
But what happens when a lead becomes a customer or a client? Can you use the power, efficiency, and scalability of texting for account management?
Well you probably know who we are, so the answer should come as no surprise: Absolutely. Now that your relationship is going to the next level, texting can help keep it alive and well.
In this article, we’ll talk about the why, the what, and the how of using texting for account management. We’ll also throw in a use case from FranFunnel’s recent experience eating our own dog food, so to speak.
If your company is already using texting from a sales perspective, you know that texting is fast, efficient, more personal than emailing. Of course it garners a higher response rate. Your leads can reply at a time that is convenient for them without interrupting their current tasks. What’s not to like?
Once your lead becomes your customer, it’s time to port over that practice from the sales desk to the account management department. Texting clearly works well for cultivating new relationships -- why wouldn’t it work well for maintaining them?
We have learned that by streamlining their communication, our staff is free to focus on customer service tasks that require a higher level of care. (This contributes to higher customer loyalty, if we really must spell it out.)
Remember, customers and clients don’t always churn because of price, but often because of neglect. As John Mayer’s beautiful song from the movie The Bucket List goes:
You better know that in the end,
It's better to say too much
Than to never to say
What you need to say again
Neglect is poison to your relationships, and incorporating texting into your communication flow can be a key tool to proactively anchor them and keep them in the loop.
Texting as a communication channel is already being used by early adopter brands to execute tasks like sending payment reminders, setting up appointments, birthday or anniversary messages, surveying customers, managing live events, and so on.
Airlines come to mind. In the past few years, you’ve probably checked the box on your online travel booking portal to sign up to your airline messaging program. These push notifications can soothe your airport anxiety when it comes to updates like schedule changes, cancellations, and other timely travel information.
If you’ve ever been stuck on a hot crowded bus between the parking lot and the terminal with thirty minutes until takeoff, getting that text message from the airline that your flight has been delayed can do wonders for your blood pressure.
Another example of a brand that has been on the forefront of tech innovation is Warby Parker. They brilliantly use texting as a customer service tool. Whether you want help with your prescription, health insurance information, returns or exchanges, you’re only a few characters away from getting the account support you need.
How might your company leverage texting in a similar way? What if phone and email weren’t the only two ways of creating ongoing value for your customers?
(P.S. If you haven’t read our recent articles about short codes and A2P10DLC texting regulations, check this out for more use cases.)
FranFunnel has historically been a bimodal shop when it comes to the function of account management. We’ve built our customer service process around phone and email, and so far, it’s worked well for us.
But in the spirit of “eating our own dogfood,” as the startup folk love to say, we’ve recently decided to dip our toes in the water of account management texting as well.
We wanted to take you behind the scenes of our process. Let’s look at how our process has evolved...
The very moment FranFunnel gets a new user (woo hoo!) our sales team immediately fills out a basic lead form that consists of new customer’s information. Once submitted to our internal system, that data routes to the Onboarding FranFunnel Account.
And through a few lines of code, that new customer automatically gets an email with next steps. Here’s what it looks like:
But as of now, there’s one more step. The new feature we’ve added, now the new customer gets a text as well. Here’s what that looks like:
We’ve officially FranFunnelled ourselves. Mmmm, love that dog food.
This new process saves time on our end, and onboarding just became smoother and more pleasant for future users. Rather than waiting around for humans to get it together, they get their on-boarding started immediately. And they’re now being contacted on all mediums, both email and text, with friendly introductions..
# # #
Texting has come a long way in the past twenty years.
From friends, to families, to prospective customers, we’ve now reached an important milestone in the arc of this story.
Your business can leverage the power, efficiency, and scalability of texting for account management, creating more value for those who matter most.
And with every message that chimes on your customers’ phones, you’ll subtly remind them why they made the right choice hiring you in the first place.
GOOD LUCK! LOVE MOM