Here’s how adopting instant messaging for your enterprise can boost your customer relationships and bottom line, protect you in the event of a dispute, and help you remain in compliance.
With the pandemic radically changing the way that we work, do business, and interact with clients, previously clear boundaries around business communications became murkier than ever. As many important aspects of business suddenly went virtual, formal face-to-face meetings were replaced by Zoom calls, and even those of us who prefer more old school interactions were forced to embrace tech for exchanges with clients and colleagues.
For both employees and customers, instant messaging for business served as a critical tool for facilitating conversations that couldn’t take place in person. But even as the new normal means less restrictions on gathering, instant messaging in the workplace is here to stay. Here’s why you should consider this medium for your enterprise, and how you can reap the benefits of instant messaging in business.
Instant messaging, IMing, all these platforms…I’m lost.
The term “instant messaging” refers to communication platforms which allow people to send messages to each other in real time. These solutions typically include pings that notify the recipient of messages as soon as they’re transmitted. Users are able to send each other lightning-fast replies and exchange information quickly and easily.
Some instant messaging platforms allow participants to share GIFs, pictures, files, audio, and other media. Certain platforms give users the ability to form group chats with multiple participants, or channels related to specific issues or interests.
WhatsApp, Slack, Telegram, Signal, Facebook Messenger, and WeChat are all instant messaging platforms. While some are more likely to be used for internal communications within organizations and others are better suited to customer-facing interactions, all of these solutions allow for super fast, direct messages between people.
What is the purpose of instant messaging?
Instant messaging was created to allow users to send messages in real time, with the ability to respond instantly and share important data and information as quickly as possible.
Unlike traditional platforms such as telephone calls, users can leverage instant messaging to reach anyone by just punching in their screen name, and enjoy a text record of their exchange which can be easily referenced later.
Why use instant messaging in the workplace?
There are a number of reasons why you should consider embracing instant messaging for your business, whether conversations are taking place between colleagues or customer-facing. But the main advantage comes down to one simple concept: enabling and easing communication between people.
Whether it’s used for sales and customer success teams, or for better collaboration between departments, an instant messaging solution for your company will create a culture in which connections are strengthened and critical information can be exchanged in real time.
Advantages of instant messaging in business
The benefits of instant messaging in the workplace are diverse and wide-ranging, from boosting customer satisfaction to protecting your organization in the event of an audit or future dispute.
Strengthen customer relations
As on-the-go accessibility continues to become an integral part of consumers’ expectations for businesses, giving your customers easy access to representatives from your organization’s customer success team means providing them the convenience and real-time responses that they crave.
Businesses that are still sticking to the “phone calls only between 9 AM to 5 PM, replete with 40 minutes of wait time, press 2 for this option” style of customer service experience will find themselves floundering very soon. Customer obsession is now the name of the game, and instant messaging for business can help you deliver the VIP experience that resonates with consumers and builds brand loyalty.
Ease collaboration between employees
With hybrid work meaning that various team members may not be physically present in the office on the same days, instant messaging for enterprises can help bridge the gaps and ensure that everyone remains in the loop.
The option to utilize messaging to reach out to their colleagues is especially appreciated by notoriously phone-averse Millennial and Gen Z employees, who have expressed strong preferences for interactions conducted via text.
When employees can consult with their superiors, managers can delegate tasks, and colleagues can get answers to their questions in the blink of an eye, work gets done faster. Agility is a key factor for business success, and being able to make decisions in real time provides companies with a leg up over their competitors.
Rather than having to sift through old email threads and hunt down who was CC’d and who wasn’t, employees can get the information they need to make a decision when it matters most. Senior managers can reach their juniors instantly, providing advice or confirming that they’re ready to review a pending project.
Easier communication leads to tasks being completed quickly, and creates an environment in which teams can respond proactively and in real-time to internally-assigned tasks and customer queries alike.
A strong sense of trust between colleagues is incredibly important for fostering both a positive work environment and better business outcomes. Creating a communications culture in which any team member is accessible with a simple ping boosts a sense of trust and respect that can strengthen the bonds between your employees.
Instant messaging can also help your business establish trust with customers. Consumer awareness around privacy has reached an all-time high, and customers are increasingly concerned about how businesses store and use their data. By allowing clients to reach out to customer success teams with minimal barriers, your clients will naturally feel that your organization is transparent and straight-shooting. This, in turn, inspires greater consumer confidence in your business.
Create a digital record
Depending on your industry, you may be subject to strict regulations around recording interactions between employees and clients, as well as between employees within the organization. And if your organization is out of compliance with those legal requirements, there’s a very high risk that the consequences could be disastrous – think a serious hit to both your company’s finances and brand reputation.
A number of recent multi million dollar fines have shown what can happen when businesses don’t keep a solid digital record of their internal and client-facing communications. When employee conversations are taking place across a diverse array of platforms, it’s easier than ever for compliance to fall through the cracks. And in the event of an audit or a dispute, having a solid digital record of communications can serve as a powerful tool to protect your organization.
Whether you’re planning on using Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, or other chat platforms, your organization’s instant messaging solution needs to provide you with the ability to track, monitor, and save conversations conducted across multiple channels.
LeapXpert provides a responsible business communications platform that keeps all your company’s instant messaging data in one centralized location. This gives you access to a single source of truth, and the peace of mind of having full transparency on everything from compliance to chat quality.
To learn more about responsible instant messaging for your business, get in touch with us! We’d love to show you how client-facing instant messaging can provide major advantages to your business, as well as help you protect your organization further down the road.
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