For a generation, marketers have had two main choices for an outbound campaign, SMS or Email. On the one hand SMS has very high open rates (>95%) with the added bonus of immediacy – but the content is just boring text and it’s hard to get engagement. Email has evolved to become incredibly rich and even interactive – but spam filters and inbox overload have reduced it’s effectiveness. Email suffers from low open rates (<20%) and a reputation for potentially being risky to click links
“Now along comes IP messaging and it seems like both email and sms are just months away from being consigned to the scrap heap along with snail mail, pagers and the landline telephone.”
Well not so fast!
IP channels all exist in their own “walled gardens”. Everyone has their own favorites. Messaging providers all think they can be “the one that wins the world” so they bet on their own platform over all the others. So there’s no way to reach all consumers through one channel over IP. RCS backed by Google may be one possible future universal channel but Apple are focused on their own Apple Business Chat, and the overall landscape remains fragmented, with no obvious consolidation aside from a possible future linking of the Facebook Messenger – WhatsApp – Instagram trio.
Added to this, messaging providers want to protect their installed consumer base so they are very careful to control the content that can be sent over their systems. They are terrified users will get annoyed by spam and uninstall their app.
Some IP channels also make things more difficult for marketers by using ID’s to identify consumers rather than mobile numbers – this means that your painstaking work building your opted-in base may not be helpful for those channels.
Finally messaging companies have been slow to provide access to their systems via API – this has meant very limited options in the past to send via their channels. Often the only available access was using bots which doesn’t fit well with a marketing campaign model.
The good news is that finally there are other options starting to open up with Viber being at the forefront.
– Viber is one of the IP chat apps that retains mobile number as an identifier for their end users. This is great for your business since it means your existing opted-in base can be targeted for campaigns.
Promotexter has launched Viber as a new channel in their richly featured SaaS campaign platform. To try you can sign up for free then immediately test SMS, Email and Viber (with SMS fallback of course).
Views expressed are the opinions of the author and may not fully represent the views of either Promotexter or Viber/Rakuten
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