More than half of UK businesses are now using mobile messaging apps like Whatsapp and Facebook Messenger to communicate with their customers, according to a new industry report.
With the number of people using mobile messaging apps that is expected to grow to 3 billion by 2022, a growing number of companies are engaging their customers via SMS, Rich Communication Services (RCS), Apple Business Chat, Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp – the latter being used by 54% of Millennials every dayand 51% of Generation Z.
A report from Esendex, which commissioned PwC to survey more than 4,000 companies, shows how sectors such as IT and telecommunications, retail, finance, professional services and manufacturing have significantly increased their spending in this area over the past three years, with other investments to be made over the next three years.
But SMEs are lagging behind larger firms in adopting this newer but growing technology; Only 45% of UK-based companies with less than 250 employees use this form of customer communication channel, compared to 62% of large organizations.
The report also highlights the impact of Covid-19 on mobile messaging, with more businesses using mobile channels for communications and emergency alerts (up 42%), event marketing (in 40% increase) and customer notifications and reminders (up 38%). ), compared to pre-pandemic levels.
Amy Robinson, Senior Director of Brand Development at Esendex, comments: “Covid-19 has had a profound effect not only on businesses here in the UK, but around the world. This has forced companies across industries to think about how they communicate with their staff and customers and make the necessary adjustments and improvements to avoid falling behind while their competitors harness the power of various channels. communication, including SMS, online chat.
“Based on our research, the UK has above-average mobile messaging adoption with 52% of businesses using this form of communication channel, compared to 47% globally. It is said a lot that the pandemic has changed the way we live and work forever, with a hybrid workforce expected to become the norm. The same can be said of customer engagement: many companies have taken a significant step over the past year in the way they connect with those who pay for their products and / or services; this trend is likely to continue as companies place greater emphasis on growth and customer retention during what is still a very difficult time.
The 14-page report, which explores the rate of mobile messaging across the world, identified more than 80 applications for business messaging, which can be categorized into the following top ten use cases:
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When considering communication more broadly – across all channels, including email, live chat, and call centers – businesses typically have five major use cases, the most popular being: internal communications , customer support, customer notifications and reminders, payments and collections and business process management. .