Why SMS should be part of your feedback strategy

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By Anthony Link, CEO, The Connections Group

Historically, companies have relied on phone and email for customer engagement and obtaining feedback and surveys.  However, today, text messaging is the fastest growing contact channel for customer service and feedback. This is simply due to its convenience, ease of usage and reliability. 

The data speaks for itself:

  • 81 percent of the population own cell phones;
  • 50 percent + of customers prefer contacting support through text;
  • 95.3 percent of consumers said they would respond to an SMS survey*;
  • SMS has a response rate that’s 76.5 percent greater than email;
  • 98 percent of all text messages are opened; and
  • 90 percent are responded to within three minutes.

Compare these statistics to email, which only has a 21 percent open rate, a three percent response rate and an average response time of 90 minutes.

SMS messaging survey deployment

Jay Conrad, president of The Connections Group, says,  “People communicate via text more frequently these days.  With conversational marketing we see higher engagement rates, higher cost satisfaction and greater ease of problem resolution.  People are more apt to text or access a web app than to call housekeeping for extra towels or contact the concierge to book a dinner reservation spontaneously and even when not on-site.“

For businesses today, utilizing texting for survey delivery and responses is an easy and quick way to obtain feedback information. It empowers and engages customers, who might not otherwise respond to email or telephone surveys, to provide feedback on their experiences.

And they will definitely appreciate the convenience of doing so via SMS. Using a text messaging system allows customers to interact with a business without long hold times or delayed responses. After all, the faster a problem or issue is solved, the greater the customer’s satisfaction and loyalty.

Benefits of SMS survey deployment:

  • Cheaper than over-the-phone or face-to-face surveys
  • High response rates
  • Quicker response rates
  • More accurate responses
  • Easy setup
  • Cost effective
Connections SMS survey

At The Connections Group we work with CustomerCount®, a premier provider of world class, enterprise-capable, guest experience measurement tools. By integrating with our SMS text platform, CustomerCount is able to delivery surveys for their clients via text messaging. And the results have been amazing.

CustomerCount’s omni-channel approach expands the traditional communication methods and provides customers the preferred channel to initiate their feedback through text messaging.

Bob Kobek, president of CustomerCount, explains: “We’ve seen a change in the way that our surveys are accessed. Mobile device popularity continues to grow. A year ago, 45.7 percent of our responses came from mobile devices. Today it’s 51.87 percent and growing.

“Our clients love SMS survey deployment and their customers really appreciate the ease of accessibility.”

SMS surveys provide a holistic customer communication experience and are an instant way to evaluate and ensure customer satisfaction and continued growth. It provides invaluable real-time data and analysis businesses need to create superior customer experience that skyrockets satisfaction and growth!

We believe it is the future for customer feedback survey delivery.

If you agree and want to find out more, contact Anthony Link at 561-414-4302 or Bob Kobek at 317-816-6000.

*Ipsos MORI

About CustomerCount

CustomerCount is a feature-rich, cloud-based survey solution providing intuitive real-time reporting, fast turnaround on requested updates, and detailed and dynamic data gathering capabilities to support process improvement efforts, build customer loyalty and improve your bottom line.

Developed and managed by Mobius Vendor Partners, CustomerCount was initially designed for the timeshare and contact center industries and is now used by organizations across numerous different vertical markets and industries.  For more information call Bob Kobek, president, on 317-816-6000 and follow them on LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook.

About The Connections Group

The Connections Group are experts in the development and implementation of conversational marketing solutions. When deployed within a client’s online marketing strategy, it drives leads that want to have a conversation through the text – their chosen communication medium. Customers can now contact you directly via text with our patent pending technology and book rooms, order services, answer surveys and much more. This guest communication lead to higher engagement and higher customer service.


To qualify you must comply? We take a look.

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by Bob Kobek, RRP, President CustomerCount

Reprinted courtesy of Resort Trades, Volume 33, Number 1, January 5, 2020; ResortTrades.com.

Well, not necessarily, but maybe. In any case, it pays to pay attention when it comes to legislation compliance.

Chances are your competitors are not as aware as they should be.

It is important to note here – I am not an attorney – I do not, nor have I ever played one on TV. The ONLY legal opinion that is represented here, by me, is simple: Call a qualified attorney.

Let’s take a look: First some definitions, as you will notice in the paragraphs below, there are a lot of ways to get into trouble. I promise all of them contain legislation compliance that will impact your business in a bad way, or if you are smart, very often in a good way because they can offer a competitive advantage.

  • World Wide Web Compliance (W3C);
    • Your websites, all of them, need to be ADA compliant (are surveys included? Absolutely, every last one of them)
  • Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG);
    • Strict adherence is critical
  • Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI-A);
    • Staying current is equally as critical
  • General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR);
    • The EU is fining heavily here, and borders offer no protection
  • California Privacy Act (CCPA);
    • Modeled after GDPR – to take effect in 2020
  • The Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) including Do Not Call (DNC);
    • The umbrella law that has long reach and will sting or bite
  • Canadian Anti-Spam Law (CASL);
    • Better not solicit or market without permission
  • and the last time I looked there were 30 different pieces of state anti robo call laws either proposed or passed dealing with TCPA issues

NOTE: All legislation compliance here falls under the umbrella of “consumer protection”. Most all of them work with the premise that you must gain prior express written consent.

There was a time, not so long ago, when the Do Not Call rule was passed and signed into law that was to be the destroyer of the call center. But smart marketing people figured out how to capitalize on it – use it, don’t call people that don’t want to be called. It also created an industry made up of companies that manage your DNC lists.

In timeshare, there were also those companies (I suggest they still exist) that ignored the DNC treating is as a part of their risk management.

Legislation compliance

And, today, check these instances:

Scenario 1: Government

Google and its subsidiary, YouTube agreed to pay more than $170,000,000.00 for alleged violations of Children’s Privacy Law*.  https://www.ftc.gov/news-events/press-releases/2019/09/google-youtube-will-pay-record-170-million-alleged-violations

Scenario 2: Class Action

Meanwhile, Treasure Island (yes, THE Las Vegas Treasure Island) was the victim of an SMS (text violation) and TCPA class action law suit over the use of a virtual concierge service because embedded in their system was the opportunity to submit a review on Yelp! Note the reference to “class action”. Civil suit. http://www.kleinmoynihan.com/hotels-use-of-artificial-intelligence-leads-to-sms-tcpa-class-action/

You might think these two companies are smarter than that – but alas, not to be. (In the case of Treasure Island, the suit against Yelp! was dropped, the one against Treasure Island was settled.

How a Legislator might think

I recently met with a Member of Congress (MOC) about a robo call bill he was introducing. My take was/is there are two very distinct types of robo calls: legal and illegal. Just about everyone I talk to about this agrees, and it is the position of the Professional Association for Customer Engagement (PACE). I love the debate and there are very intelligent solutions being engineered. But this is about that one single bill.

It seems the gentleman from a state that will not be mentioned here for fear of some retribution, came up with the initiative when his mother called to complain about all the robo calls.  Yup, his mother. When he found out that is was a politically palatable effort – he went for the fences.

All calls, even the ones some very unfortunate parents might get if there is a lock down at their child’s school or their doctor needs to tend to an emergency and can’t make the appointment with you.

This one will fall under the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)

According to the Professional Association for Customer Engagement (PACE) as of December 1, 2019, there are 30 separate proposed pieces of state legislation and four proposed federal pieces of legislation, all dealing with TCPA consumer protection issues.

Then, there is this one – on the Compromise Bill currently working its way through Congress, in an article written by Eric J. Troutman of Squire Patton Boggs (US) LLC and published in the National Law Review: “Breaking News: Don’t leave for Thanksgiving just Yet! Text of New Compromise “Robocall” Bill just released, and its huge!” Wednesday, November 27, 2019.  Can be referred to as SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. 1 This Act may be cited as the ‘‘Pallone-Thune Tele-2 phone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence Act’’ or the ‘‘Pallone-Thune TRACED Act’’. https://docs.house.gov/billsthisweek/20191202/BILLS-116s151-SUS.pdf

Notice the word “criminal” in this one?

This is all about the robocall, but one of the more intriguing ones is “No new criminal enforcement provisions but it requires certain reporting to the DOJ about fraudulent calls for possible prosecution”.

Not being a lawyer is not a deterrent for me to interpret what this means. It means that any government entity, Attorney General, County Sheriff, can refer fraudulent calls to the Federal Department of Justice for prosecution. They are the ones with the gold badges.

And, there is still no definition of an Automatic Telephone Dialing System. And, keep in mind the next big wave of anticipated legislation compliance that will turn to regulations will surround the issue of privacy. This one is just getting started in the states, the federal legislators and the global regulators.

Stand by – this is a moving target!