SMS Strategies

Conversational Strategies to Add to Your SMS Program

illustration of computer screens with plant, credit card, lightbulb, clock, shopping bags
Published
Dec 5, 2022
Written by
Kayla Ellman
Kayla is a Senior Content Marketing Manager at Attentive. You can find her binge-reading, baking from her (rapidly growing) cookbook collection, or exploring local hiking trails.

Learn how to use Attentive Concierge™ to start conversations that lead to conversions.

Let's say someone's browsing your website and sees something they like, but they're not sure about the material or what size to get. They decide to wait, and navigate away from your site with the intention of coming back later.

Even if you send them a browse abandonment reminder via SMS an hour later, if the person still has questions or needs assistance, a one-way message might not be enough to get them to convert. Instead, you need to start a two-way conversation, and provide them with real-time support, just like an associate might do in a store.

When you invite your subscribers to reply directly to your text messages, and they hear back from real people—who answer their questions and offer helpful advice—they have a better overall shopping experience. This often translates to higher conversion rates and long-term customer loyalty: our internal data shows that consumers spend over 50% more on average when they get replies and are more likely to buy again.

Keep reading to learn how to create a successful conversational strategy that makes sure your subscribers have the option to send you a message and get the support they need, no matter where they are in the customer journey.

Engage on-site users (and gain subscribers) with LiveSMS™

It should be easy for anyone browsing your website to contact your customer support team and ask questions. But easy doesn't just mean having a button they can click to start a live chat—because while they wait for a response, they might lose interest or lose track of their tab. You need to be able to provide shoppers with the help they need within minutes, not hours, so they can get back to making a purchase.

LiveSMS sign-up unit and conversational text messaging example from OLLY

LiveSMS is an extension of Attentive Concierge that allows you to bring the live chat experience to the phone. When a visitor needs help, all they have to do is opt in to SMS (if they haven’t already) to start a conversation, and an Attentive agent will respond to them directly via text message on behalf of your brand.

Offering live chat through your SMS channel increases conversions, but with LiveSMS, it also drives subscriber growth. You're incentivizing sign-ups with the promise of delivering quick and convenient customer support (and without offering a discount, which is better for your profit margins).

Get high-intent customers over the finish line

Create a triggered journey with Attentive Concierge to engage subscribers who’ve viewed the same product multiple times but haven’t made a purchase. You know these shoppers are interested because they keep coming back, but chances are, there’s a particular reason they’re not converting. Asking an open-ended question at this stage can help you understand what's getting in the way and offer the right kind of assistance.

conversational text messaging example from Igloo

"Any questions I can answer for you?" might prompt someone to ask about sizing, ingredients, or even how to use a specific product. "Are you looking for anything in particular today?" might encourage someone to ask for style advice or gift recommendations. If a common question or concern comes up a lot (e.g., pricing), consider adding a follow-up message to your triggered journey to proactively address it and offer a solution (e.g., the option to pay in installments).

conversational text messaging examples from Mented

Apply the same conversational strategy to your cart abandonment journey. When you remind subscribers about the items in their cart, invite them to ask questions or incentivize them with an offer to complete the purchase. Even if they don’t need any help, you’ve engaged them in a two-way interaction that builds rapport and lays the foundation for long-term loyalty.

Check in with recent shoppers post-purchase

Subscribers are most engaged after they’ve made a purchase. Take the opportunity to keep the conversation going and foster your relationship with them through SMS. Send them a triggered post-purchase message from your brand persona, thanking them for being a customer, and include a question or comment that encourages them to respond.

post-purchase text message example from Aurate

For example, ask recent shoppers how they're liking the item they purchased or if there was anything else they had their eye on. When they reply, an agent can jump in and send them a link to leave a review, recommend related products, or share style tips and care instructions. After going back and forth, your agent can also send them a special offer to encourage them to return to your store and buy again soon.

Personally thank (and reward) VIPs for their loyalty

Use Attentive Concierge to recognize your most loyal, repeat customers when they reach VIP status, whether that means they’ve spent a certain amount with your brand or made multiple purchases over time. Invite them to enjoy an exclusive shopping experience, deliver a unique discount code, or offer curated recommendations that complement their past purchases.

Your agents have access to crucial insights like order history (i.e., confirmation numbers, current order status, past purchases) to effectively assist subscribers based on their individual needs or preferences.

VIP segment text message example from Lizzy James

Another option is to add an Attentive Concierge follow-up message to one-time campaigns, to connect with VIP subscribers who’ve clicked but haven't converted. Letting them know you’re there to be their personal shopping assistant allows you to boost campaign performance and improve your remarketing efforts while making sure there are no blockers on the path to purchase.

Reconnect with lapsed customers to win back their business

Sending a conversational winback message can help reinvigorate your relationship with customers who haven’t shopped in a while but are still subscribed to your SMS channel. Rather than simply incentivizing them with a coupon, you’re adding a personal touch that shows you still appreciate and value them being a part of your community.

winback text message example from Mented

Even if your winback message doesn't lead to conversion right away, you’re reminding these subscribers about a major perk of SMS: having direct access to your brand, so they can reach out wherever and whenever they need it.

Best practices for creating a successful conversational strategy

Use these conversational text messaging tips to drive engagement, revenue, and loyalty throughout the entire customer lifecycle with Attentive Concierge.

  • Set the expectation that your SMS channel is conversational. Let new subscribers know from the get-go that they can reply to your text messages and expect a direct response from your brand in return. Consider adding a step to your welcome journey, introducing your agent persona and encouraging subscribers to reach out any time.
  • Invite subscriber replies strategically, at key touchpoints. Engage on-site users with LiveSMS, use Attentive Concierge in your triggered journeys, and occasionally remind subscribers that they can “text back with any questions” in your campaign messages.
  • Incorporate your Attentive Concierge agent persona into your messages. Sign off texts with your agent name or add the {agentName} macro to your messages. Not only does this help humanize your brand, but it also opens the door for you to offer more one-to-one, personalized experiences.
  • Maximize message engagement with open-ended prompts or questions. Include a simple call to action (e.g., "Text us, we’re here to help!"), tell subscribers to just reply if they have questions, or ask if they need help finding something specific (e.g., "Are you looking for anything in particular today?").
  • Keep agents in the loop about promotions and product updates. Attentive Concierge agents act as an extension of your team. They use your customer support materials, FAQs, and product information to interact with subscribers and answer their questions accurately, in your brand voice. By equipping agents with the most up to date information, like holiday deals or new collections, they're better able to serve your customers and help drive conversions.
  • Share feedback with your agents regularly. It's important to review the conversations your agents are having with your subscribers and leave comments that help them assess what they're doing well and where there's room for improvement. You can also make adjustments to your tone and brand voice guidelines as needed (e.g., if agents can use emojis, the formality of their messaging, words to avoid using).

Explore Texts We Love to see how our customers are using people-powered SMS to personally connect with their subscribers, drive more sales, and boost brand loyalty.

And, when you're ready, get started with a demo of Attentive Concierge.

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