Although rich content messaging is still being rolled out to different phones and carriers, it is quickly becoming the new norm: sending stickers, GIFs, images, and videos in messaging is now de facto for many mobile users.
iPhone users have long been accustomed to features like these, as well as read receipts and a typing awareness indicator. In an effort to offer similar value to Android users, Google has been pushing its own rich communication services (RCS) across carriers. This will expand the market and possibilities for rich content marketing messaging for brands.
Here are just a few of the reasons why you need to pay attention to RCS.
It Provides Unparalleled Interactivity for Brands
While text message marketing has long been an effective way to engage customers, as more mobile users get access to RCS message services, brands are finding even more ways to connect.
When your customers can scan a ticket, book a service, or manage their accounts right from within their texting app—without having to download a separate app or visit a website on their phone—they appreciate the simplicity and ease with which they can interact with your brand.
It Fosters Successful Conversational Commerce
Until recently, an online purchase was a sort of one-way conversation. Consumers communicated what they wanted through what they bought. But now we have what’s been coined conversational commerce: a two-way dialogue between customers and brands. And messaging plays a big part in that.
When marketers can send images of a product via chat, consumers are more likely to make a purchase. When they leverage chatbots to not only answer customer service questions but also provide customized offers, customers latch on. The data gleaned from mobile marketing campaigns can be used to better tailor what brands offer customers.
Gen Z is Growing up With RCS
If you’re trying to reach today’s youth, there’s no better channel than RCS. In fact, kids between 10 and 19 use iMessage more than they do Facebook Messenger or Snapchat. They’re mobile natives who speak in emojis and gifs, so if you’re trying to reach this audience, you’ll need to learn to speak their language.
Brands Stand Out Using It (for the Time Being)
Though consumers are eating up RCS, brands are still slow to adopt, though that will quickly change. For now, your brand has the potential to shine by leveraging rich content messaging. Focus on providing value and innovation, and you’ll grow your mobile subscriber base.
You Can Include Action Buttons
Every marketer knows the value of a good call to action, but until RCS, there hasn’t been a visually appealing option to impel action from within a text. With rich communication services, brands can include action buttons like “call now,” “book an appointment,” or “buy.”
It Captures Customers Where They Are
While many people use third-party messaging apps like WhatsApp or Facebook Messenger, the bulk use the standard messaging app that comes with their phones. And as more phones become equipped with RCS, this increases your reach with rich messaging.
While certainly, you can also market via these third-party apps, as well as market using straight SMS or MMS campaigns, you can reach people who aren’t interested in having to connect to yet another messaging app with engaging content.
Even Push Notifications are Getting Richer
As part of RCS, push notifications are also getting a makeover: now you can include embedded videos, images, or interactive features in your push notifications.
Your mobile subscribers will swipe down to see the notification to decide whether or not to click on it to learn more. Imagine sending a notification of a discount for any sweater. Meh. Now imagine sending one that also includes a GIF of a model rocking that sweater. Which do you think will get more engagement?
RCS is definitely next-level marketing, but unless you want to be left behind, it’s time to adopt it. Customers want to engage with your brand in fun and visually-engaging ways, and RCS fits the bill.