Many businesses have recently implemented a completely new form of communication with their customers; two-way SMS (https://katabat.com/two-way-sms/). The idea is simple enough and makes plenty of sense. Rather than sending an anonymous mass text or e-mail to consumers, businesses can have personal and unique conversations with their patrons.
Until now, communication between business and consumer has been fairly limited. Either call the business (which often results in a call center), send an e-mail that may take quite a while for a response, or go in store and most likely be told to do one of the previous methods. Texts from businesses is not a completely new idea. Many use this form of communication for sending reminders, account changes, etc. However, with two-way SMS, the customer and business have an actual open line of communication.
Two-way texting is beneficial to both customer and business for multiple reasons. Speed, management, and privacy are all easily combated with this form of contact. Rather than waiting on hold for hours or going through a lengthy online process, a customer can simply text their bank for an account balance. Rather than a doctor’s office calling each patient individually to set up and confirm appointments, they can simply send a message and book or confirm appointments with ease. One concern of two-way texting is privacy, in that many consumers do not want their number flying around businesses, especially at the risk of their personal information being sold. An easy solution is messaging through an app that masks phone numbers or uses virtual numbers. So an SMS is still sent, yet privacy is intact (https://www.infobip.com/en/blog/build-customer-loyalty-with-2-way-sms).