Are Enterprises Neglecting SMS as an Engagement Channel?

By James Bourne, Enterprise Apps Tech

In a population of 7.3 billion globally, 6.1 billion – or 83% – use SMS every month and there are 7.1 billion active mobile SIM cards. As a result, a new research paper from Portio Research, in association with OpenMarket, argues enterprises should not count out the more traditional use cases when looking for greater reach to customers.

The report argues that enterprises looking to capitalise on these trends will “quickly be able to see that A2P [application to person] SMS ticks all the boxes.” Its ubiquity – a huge addressable market and widespread consumer acceptance – alongside being mobile first, an ability to personalise, as well as sky high response rates and low cost, makes it an attractive prospect.

“Enterprise IT managers looking to select the right mobile messaging partner for SMS must work through a series of selection criteria,” argues Jay Emmet, general manager of OpenMarket. “We strongly advise focusing on the top requirements such as global reach, high availability, performance [and] scalability, quality, and security.

“Companies should also ask questions about experience delivering mobile engagement solutions across different organisational departments and industries, and how the vendor will support specific mobile messaging use cases,” Emmet adds.

While the report advocates SMS for getting the company’s message out to potential customers, regular readers of this publication will be more than aware of the unified comms angle and how employees in an organisation interact. In February, a survey from messaging provider TigerText showed almost three quarters (72%) of employees use texting as a workplace messaging tool. Of that number, 44% text through standard SMS, 16% used iMessage, 13% used the likes of WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, while only 6% used enterprise messaging apps.

The point here is not the death of SMS, but – many in the space hope – the death of email, which TigerText CEO Brad Brooks told this reporter was “overburdened with so much clutter.”  SMS is also at the heart of vendors’ messaging apps – Soprano Gamma, which threw its hat into the ring last year, aimed to combine the security of IP-based mobile messaging with the ubiquity of SMS.

You can find out more on the report here.