19 Innovative Ways to Use SMS as a Business

In your omnichannel arsenal, with a second to none opening and adoption rate, SMS is your secret weapon. When it comes to the ways to use SMS as a business, here are some to start you off. Just remember, with links to landing pages, payment portals or rich content, 2-way messaging, deeplinks to your app and much more, SMS is an inredibly versatile tool. Our experts are always on hand to give you personalised catered advice on the best ways to use SMS as a business. In fact, you can even text us about it by clicking here.

1. Helping Steve buy his new car

Steve doesn’t have all the necessary documents on him to finish his personal loan application online, but a handy SMS the next day reminding him to complete it (and also which documents he needs) means he’s able to complete the application later that night thanks for the reminder to bring home a payslip from his desk draw at work. Steve later in the month receives a text to remind him that his first instalment is due. He makes sure his money is in the right account so the payment can be made easily. He is so happy with his customer service, he later recommends the loan company to his brother who is also looking for a personal loan to do up the kitchen.

2. Reminding Aisha to book Rex in for a groom

Aisha receives a personalised text addressed to ‘Rex’s owner’ informing her that for Rex’s particular breed, it’s recommended that she books him in at the dog groomers again soon. Aisha is able to reply to the SMS to make the appointment (because Rex lacks opposable thumbs).

3. Giving Georgina’s mortgage company valuable feedback

Following a successful mortgage application, Georgina receives an SMS asking if she would like to participate in a quick customer service survey. She accepts, and is able to complete the survey using SMS with much ease, simply replying to each message with a score, and type any additional comments she has.

4. Feeding Thom’s hungry family

Thom is at a local fair wondering what to get to eat when he sees a sign above a food truck that says he can put in an order for a pizza, then receive a text to let him know when it’s cooked. He and his family browse the other stalls while they wait and head back to the truck once they have received the text that their pizza is ready. The text also contains the company’s Twitter handle and link to the Facebook page. Thom is so impressed, he follows both social accounts.

5. Taking the stress out of Derek’s day

Derek receives an SMS which confirms his taxi order the minute he gets off the phone. The next day, Derek wakes to the news his train is delayed by over an hour. He also has an SMS reminding him of his taxi booking. It has the ability to reply so he is able to rearrange his taxi for slightly later in seconds. He receives an SMS to confirm his new booking. When the time comes, Derek receives a text that his taxi driver is outside so he puts his shoes on and finds his keys.

6. Preventing Shania’s online rant

Shania is upset about the fit of a dress she ordered online. Fortunately, she receives an SMS just in time, asking her for feedback on her order. Shania lets the company know about her issue instead of ranting on Twitter or to her friends.

7. Persuading Gina

Gina is persuaded by a text she receives for flight deals, and books an impulse weekend away. Impressed by the service, and prompted to do so with an SMS containing a link a few days after her trip, Gina leaves the airline a glowing online review.

8. Making sure Paul has childcare covered

Paul receives an SMS informing him that his daughter’s school is closed. Paul is able to easily forward this message to his own parents who often offer childcare for him. Like most people over 65, they do not use email or Facebook so SMS is ideal!

9. Making sure Shabnam doesn’t miss out on festival tickets

Shabnam receives an SMS to let her know tickets are on sale for next year’s music festival. The SMS contains a deeplink that will take her through to the festival’s app (which she installed last year) to purchase them. She forwards the text to her friends and clicks through. Once purchased, Shabnam receives a confirmation SMS. It also reminds her to turn her push notifications on so she can hear news about the festival such as headliners. Not realising they were off, she uses the deeplink in the SMS to take her to the right place in the app to turn them on. Fitting SMS into your omnichannel strategy is one of our favourite ways to use SMS as a business.

10. Helping Sabrina get the job done

Sabrina uses a keyword and product number in an SMS to order parts she needs for her job as a plumber. She receives confirmation of her order, and they let her know if the parts are in stock and an approximate time when she can pick them up from the trade counter at the store. Sabrina receives a final message to let her know that the items are ready for collection, including the address of the local store, and a link which will open her maps app to give her directions to the store. If she does not collect the items, she will receive an SMS informing her when the items will be held until.

11. Finding Fiona work

Fiona keeps missing out on temp job roles by not seeing the recruitment agency’s email newsletter in time, but notices she can opt-in to receive job roles as soon as they are available as SMS alerts. She opts-in and receives an alert that same day. She is able to call the number the SMS came from to be connected to the recruitment agency immediately. Upon getting employed to a job she loves, the recruitment agency find these text alerts to be one of their favourite ways to use SMS as a business!

12. Getting Graham to submit his meter readings 

Graham signs up for SMS alerts to let him know when he needs to provide meter readings to his energy provider, and also when his bill is due. He finds these messages very useful, as he can easily forward them to his partner if they are home instead. They contain a link to the site where the couple can submit payments and readings. Graham receives a message that the company are installing smart meters. They use 2-way SMS in order to arrange the appointment and also send him a reminder of the day and time 24 hours beforehand. Graham has forgotten the appointment and wont be home, but is grateful for the reminder and uses 2-way SMS to rearrange the time.

13. Verifying Helen and her purchases

As part of Helen’s registration with her bank, she submits her phone number which receives a unique code. This code is then entered to the bank’s site to verify her number. Later that year, Helen receives an SMS confirming her last few purchases. She simply needs to reply Y to confirm the purchases were her. In this case, they were, as she is splurging on the Christmas shopping. A few months following, Helen receives another text confirming the purchases. In this case, Helen does not recognise the transactions. She replies N and an agent from the fraud team immediately contacts her. A great example of keeping security central when considering ways to use SMS as a business.

14. Finding Boris’ carpark space (and his car!)

Boris books his airport parking which reserves a specific space for him. The morning of his flight, he receives an SMS with the car park’s address and a deeplink which will open a maps app to the destination. The day Boris is due to come back, he receives a follow-up SMS which informs him that if he needs to extend his parking due to a delayed flight, he can do so remotely by following the link to the site. In the car park, there are signs which users can text a keyword to with the car registration if they have forgotten where the car is. They will then be texted the car’s location.

15. Making Mo see the value of his donation

Mo receives a text telling him when his blood donation has been used, increasing the chances of him donating again. The SMS also contains a link where Mo can book in to do just that. After Mo has booked in, he receives a reminder about his appointment which he is able to reply to if he is unable to attend. Mo also receives updates when there are blood shortages, particularly for his blood type which is rare. The SMS is personalised to reflect this. Personalisation is another one of our favourite effective ways to use SMS as a business

16. Ensuring Darryl’s car gets the TLC it needs

Darryl did have a car dealership app which alerted him when his MOT and service were due, but gets a new phone, which he does not think to download the dealership app onto. Fortunately, he is still opted in to receive SMS notifications. When it comes to ways to use SMS as a business, getting your opt-ins are crucial! When the time comes around for the first 6 month service and check, Darryl receives an SMS to remind him which also gives him the ability to book by simply replying. Darryl texts his availability and books in his service. He receives a further reminder via SMS the day before the service.

17. Finding time in Abdul’s schedule

Abdul signed up to receive SMS reminders about when his appointments were due since he found receiving letters a waste of paper and never looked at his email inbox unless he was expecting a particular email. His dentist reminds him it’s time for his annual check-up and include a link to the site where he can book in an appointment. Abdul cant make any of the free appointments, but speaks with the receptionist on web chat who sets it up to text him with any availability from cancelled slots. He receives an SMS with a new appointment availability the next day. He simply has to reply Y to confirm the appointment. Abdul receives a reminder SMS the day before the dentist appointment. Slashing missed appointments is one of the best cost-saving ways to use SMS as a business.

18. Retaining Ron!

Ron recently cancelled his membership, and receives an SMS asking for feedback about his decision. Ron replies that he is simply moving out of the area, so an agent reaches out to let him know about the other clubs across the country.

19. Keeping Kalila happy

After a parcel has arrived damaged, an agent arranges for a courier to collect it and rearrange a new delivery. They tell Kalila how she can subscribe to SMS alerts so she can easily track her new delivery, and also get a more precise time from the courier about the parcel collection.

Looking for more ways to use SMS as a business?

See also: Why SMS should be at the epicentre of your customer engagement campaigns



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