With increasing adoption, companies are turning to Application to Person (A2P) messaging to reach and engage with their target audience in a reliable, fast and secure way. Essentially, A2P messaging allows an application to send a message (typically an SMS) or call directly to a user/customer. Examples of these types of messages include bank alerts, shipping notifications from online stores, appointment reminders, promotional and loyalty program notifications and two-factor authentication one-time passcodes for account security.
According to a survey done by Ovum and Tata Communications, SMS is the primary mobile-specific service that companies use to communicate with customers. A2P messaging in general has been gaining popularity for business use for a variety of reasons.
Personalization: Consumers prefer their communications to be short, personalized and on their terms. A2P messaging for businesses enables a tailored experience for customers.
Reach and Engagement: SMS open rates are higher and faster than email open rates. In fact, 98% of SMS messages are read versus email at 20%.
Relevancy: As SMS messages are opened more frequently and more quickly than email, messaging can meet the end-user's more immediate needs. SMS messages are typically read within 3 minutes and hit click through rates of 19% versus email at 2%.
98% of SMS messages are read
With SMS rising in popularity, more industries and service providers are recognizing the benefits of A2P messaging. Here are some of the trends in A2P messaging that businesses can look forward to in the second half of 2017.
Self-Service: The need for real-time cloud communications is on the rise, and businesses are looking for quick, customizable ways to embed messaging and voice APIs into their apps. Communications Platform as a Service (CPaaS) companies like TeleSign now offer self-service capabilities that allow developers to easily test and deploy A2P messaging APIs. It's as simple as signing up, selecting which products to use, and adding funds to your wallet to start communicating with customers via SMS and voice messaging.
Two-Factor Authentication: To increase account security or verify changes to a user's account, using A2P messaging for SMS-based two-factor authentication (through a one-time passcode [OTP]) is a quick, reliable, and secure method that is becoming an industry standard and increasing in end-user adoption.
OTT Apps: The rise of Over the Top (OTT) apps like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger may have significantly reduced the use of P2P (Person-to-Person) SMS, but they have actually become an indirect driver of growth for A2P messaging. While consumers are increasingly adopting OTT services in lieu of SMS for their personal communications, SMS for brand/business communications has become the defined channel. Simply put, A2P SMS has become how businesses best reach their customers. Additionally, OTT app integrations with CPaaS companies like TeleSign make it possible for certain A2P communications to reach users directly through their messaging app of choice. TeleSign's SMS Verify API, for example, enables companies to send OTPs to Facebook Messenger users.
Simply put, A2P SMS has become how businesses best reach their customers
Growth in Specific Markets: Retail, finance/banking, and travel are showing a rising reliance on A2P messaging for flight alerts, account activity, notifications, and more to increase customer engagement and usage.
Internet of Things: With the usage of Internet of Things (IoT) on the rise, A2P messaging will serve an essential role in enabling users to secure and communicate with--through various alerts and notifications--their devices.
Leading the way in A2P messaging are companies like TeleSign. Some of the strategies and partnerships we've applied to optimize our execution of A2P messaging are:
Minimizing delivery issues: We offer advanced phone number cleansing, unmatched international coverage, connect directly to hundreds of carriers around the world and employ a waterfall approach across multiple routes to help ensure the highest delivery rates.
Compliance expertise: We offer free regulatory assistance to mitigate Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA) risks and adhere to worldwide content compliance to ensure customer messages are not blocked and reach their intended recipients.
Self-Service capabilities: Through our self-service portal, developers can sign up with TeleSign for a free trial, get API credentials along with $5 in free credits and use their credit card to purchase services. With this self-service model, developers can get up and running in minutes with no contract commitments or minimum transaction thresholds.
If you're planning on capitalizing on A2P to enhance communications with your users, contact TeleSign to find out the various ways we can help you integrate A2P with your business, or sign up for a free trial of our self-service offerings.