Enterprises love messaging. There is no evidence in this world that can deny the obviousness of the fact that enterprises just love reaching out to their customers. Be it regarding new deals, a new promotion, or just to remind people about them, enterprises cannot stop themselves from reaching out to who they serve. These messages are expertly crafted for the end audience in mind, and they have a high rate of reaction. Gone are the days when email marketing would get you the laurels. Organizations have recognized enterprise marketing as a good source of reaching out to customers, and they don’t seem to be moving back to the traditional methods.
Here, we list some facts related to enterprise messaging, show some of the challenges that telecoms currently face in providing a platform for enterprises to manage, and describe how these roadblocks can be averted. In short, by the end of this article, not only would we know why enterprise messaging is so popular, but also, we’ll know of possible hindrances and how to get over them.
Before we get to understanding enterprise management and the A2P (Application-to-Person) messaging setup, we will first get some facts out into the open. These facts clearly represent the ideal growth pattern of enterprise management, and how it is become the next big thing happening across this world:
- What do organization and enterprises want through a marketing campaign? This is a no brainer, since they need engagement. Well, enterprise management gives them just that in a very prolific manner. It is said to be a fact that almost 90 percent of all SMS texts are read within 30 minutes of them being received. Not only this, but we have a whopping 98 percent open rate. Compare this with other engagement tools and you’d blame yourself for not stepping unto this platform earlier.
- A report published in 2017 has mentioned that enterprises are growing above the early phase of doubt regarding enterprise management, and are incorporating ways to make the procedure even better for everyone involved. Enterprises have gone beyond experiments and are now investing heavily into this new platform.
- Total enterprise messages are expected to increase to over 2.8 trillion in 2022. This is a whopping increase from the 1.7 trillion messages that we had in 2017.
What is Application to Person or A2P Messaging
Based on the facts mentioned above, one can agree that enterprise messaging is surely the new black. The method has come up with great potential which is only expected to increase. These messages are interactive, instantaneous and intuitive. But, let’s not get carried away, there are certain things that are still required to make this the most amazing interaction point of the future. Organizations need interaction analysis, location services, and the right mix of Artificial Intelligence or AI to deliver the goods.
But before we talk about the market potential and the grey areas, it is pertinent to know the definition of both enterprise messaging and A2P marketing; two terms that we have been using interchangeably. A2P SMS is the right term to define the process of enterprise messaging. In short, A2P means application to person SMS. Businesses use this technology for enterprise messaging and hence, communicate with customers. The communication is started from a business application, and not a mobile phone, as might have been the case in P2P SMS. Thus, A2P SMS is different, it is glittery and it is the future of enterprise engagement for the future.
How Hot is it for Telecom Operators?
The growth of A2P SMS marketing is going to open a lot of doors for telecom operators on the revenue front. With revenues decreasing and operators falling behind in finances, it is expected that A2P messaging will come as the savior that they needed. The revenues generating from enterprise messaging can also help fund other endeavors that telecom operators have in mind with the age of technology upon us.
It is expected that the average revenue increase per subscription will rise from $0.13 currently, to over $1.24 in 2022. This amazing increase will grow finances and ensure that the business gets what it wants from the endeavors in this regard. Moreover, since the number of subscriptions is also projected to increase, one can expect a bigger revenue bump in the coming days. Telecom operators are in for a good time above, if enterprise messaging goes ahead and achieves the potential that is expected out of it.
White Route Messaging Surpasses Grey Route Messaging
Grey Route Messaging has for a large period of time posed a great threat to Telecom Operators. Unlike phone to phone messaging, application to phone messaging comes with a termination fee. Businesses often try to save this fee by circumventing the normal messaging route and taking to grey routes. This can cost a telecom operator millions of dollars in losses, and will leave them ruing the missed opportunity. Moreover, while organizations perceive grey routes to be all fancy, there is a loss for them in the prospect as well. Spammers also use grey routes, which is why organizations can end up using the same route as spammers; endangering their reputation.
Hence, Telcos have taken concrete steps to block grey routes and ensure that every organization or enterprise gets to stay on the right ethical perspective. The following are the challenges currently impeding the blocking process.
- Loss of Revenue: There is still a lot of money being lost through grey routes. The situation might have improved, but the ground reality and the interest of enterprises in grey routes is still the same.
- Network Protection from Spoofing and Flooding: Un-solicited messages can lead to network congestion, which not only deters the customer experience but also does harm than good. Customers who have not signed up for promotional messages end up getting them and hence, bear severe losses.
- Subscriber Trust by Blocking Illegal Content: Scammers have started following methods of social engineering to get access to customer information. These scams ask customers to click on a certain link to get more information from a person. They use that information against them.
Role of Machine Learning in Averting These Scams
Operators have recognized the fact that they need to rely on automation for blocking grey area routes. As part of this quest, vendors have started creating solutions based on machine learning. These solutions classify traffic based on learned behavior, and is able to curb grey area routes.
As part of this solution, operators try to apply advanced algorithms related to machine learning. They also identify the content and origin of all messages, and sort them into categories for deciding which one of them is the most important. This classification would help recognize the value a message holds for a customer, and how this value can be provided to them. By replacing the processes based on rules with algorithms running on machine learning, operators will be able to increase the scope of scam filtering within their organization.
How Can Telecom Operators Take this Opportunity?
Operators have to be really wise about how they take this opportunity and move into the future with it. There are three criteria that operators can consider while following the enterprise messaging opportunity:
- Self-Onboarding of Enterprises: Operators have to realize that extensive promotional activities should be planned for self-boarding enterprises into their max. It is on operators to make enterprises realize how much they can benefit from using the messaging medium for engaging with customers.
- Incorporating Digital Channels: Enterprises might have their reservations, and justifiably so, because SMS messages are not considered as the complete medium of engaging with a customer. A seamless offer needs to be prepared which engages both digital platforms and traditional messaging to develop an interest to action.
- Revenue Increase: Models need to be created that push enterprises towards what is being offered by the operator. These models should go beyond bulk SMS and termination fees, and should incorporate subscriptions that offer a perceived benefit to all operators.
Besides implementing these criteria, businesses will also have to be aligned with regulations, including GDPR. GDPR will have a huge impact on what businesses do with customer data, and both enterprises and operators are required to be on the right side of the law.
By Ronald van Loon
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