Over three billion people worldwide own a smartphone and that number continues to rise. The phone has become a mainstay of modern life and it is such an essential part of day-to-day life that most people would recoil at the thought of spending an afternoon without their device.

In fact, according to a recent poll conducted on our LinkedIn page, 48% of people check their phone over 125 times a day.

We looked a little deeper and broke down that statistic and it means that in the average day, when they are not sleeping, they have their phone in their hands, on average, 7.8 times an hour.

So, if you want to reach out to your customer, one of the one of quickest and most direct ways of doing this is through their phone. But, how?

The evolution of the text message

The traditional SMS has served well for years and has been used to send out bulk messages and information about special offers, coupons, discounts or new products. It allows one to one conversation and boasts a high open rate, with a level of intimacy that an email can’t beat. In fact, 83% of millennials open a text message within 90 seconds of receiving it.

However, mobile marketing never stands still, and new innovations continue to bring new methods of communicating with customers.

Enter RCS Messaging. RCS Messaging is an advanced form of messaging, a hybrid of SMS and more modern mobile messaging, with the functionality of formats like Messenger and Whatsapp. It allows users to send and receive images, audio and video and possesses features such as a pop-up indication of typing and read receipts. It uses a conversational style format, which leads to increased brand engagement.

The good news is that RCS Messaging doesn’t require an app download and in fact, the functionality is already installed on every smartphone. RCS Messaging doesn’t just look slick, it offers genuine customer service benefits.

Increased customer satisfaction

Through RCS Messaging, businesses can offer excellent customer service by being available 24/7 and sending immediate responses, meaning no customer is left with a bad taste in their mouth. In fact, according to a recent survey conducted by Gartner, 64% of consumers felt customer experience was more important than price.

In this age of social media, a positive customer experience is paramount; one customer waiting on hold too long can result in an irate tweet, which as we all know, can quickly gather momentum. Customers are now used to high levels of service and negative feedback on social media can be damaging to a brand’s reputation.

Convenience at your fingertips

RCS Messaging makes things extremely convenient for the user and boasts the advantage of keeping all correspondence in one place, meaning that shoppers don’t have to trawl through hundreds of emails to find a receipt or an order number.It can also provide live delivery status, once again cutting down on the time your customer has to spend hopping from tab to tab.

But, if it’s so great, why isn’t everyone using it?

Create a real connection

Lots of marketers associate the text message with spam, something to be deleted immediately. However, those days are gone. Knowing when to text and how often to contact a customer is key. With the right approach, smart messaging can now be used to create real connections with your customers.

Yes, consumers are often suspicious of SMS messages that come from a number they don’t recognise but with RCS Messaging, that problem is eliminated because a business can use Sender Name functionality to brand their SMS, meaning it will arrive on the customer’s phone with a company name, rather than a phone number. They will also see the company’s branding, which can help alleviate worries that they are the victim of a scam.

RCS Messaging isn’t just useful from a customer service perspective, in fact, it can be used to sell products or upsell on purchases made, it can help to convert abandoned cart sales and can act as a personal shopper. Brands can use the medium to send tickets for events, live directions to a location, boarding cards for flights, tutorial videos, in fact, the potential uses are endless.

RCS Messaging is a powerful tool that could very valuable to your business and if you’d like to know more about it, click here to find out how it can change your brand’s marketing strategy today.