Covid-19 is continuing to have drastic effects on businesses across the globe. In an effort to keep people safe and slow down the spread, many new measures and restrictions have been put into place, and companies are being heavily affected. According to the Financial Times, 25% of UK businesses have now shut down. In order for businesses to recover and operate efficiently, it is imperative to revise their current strategies and implement effective solutions. One of the most critical areas that companies need to focus on is analyzing and controlling cash flow. Maintaining cash flow is vital for business recovery, and one of the major contributors to poor cash flow is outstanding balances.
Even during times of crisis, companies may still need to collect payments in order to survive. However, it is important to recognize that your customers may be very vulnerable at this time and approach the process with great understanding and empathy.
Showing empathy not only enhances customer experience and improves customer satisfaction, but it also significantly increases the probability of businesses receiving payments. According to the Global Empathy Index, the companies that were the most empathetic rose in value by more than twice as much as the least empathetic companies, and achieved 50% more earnings. The businesses that take the time to understand their customers, and offer them the right solutions and support, may be the ones best placed to successfully handle and recover from a crisis. By making your entire collections process as convenient and easy as possible, you can help your customers navigate through the current climate.
Using Rich Media Messaging (RMM) is a fresh approach to collecting payments in an empathetic way, and allows customers to make payments at a time that is convenient to them. Customers can be sent a simple message containing a secure link to a web page where they can pay instantly.
The message’s rich content is fully customizable, so that you can tailor the colours, branding, logos, fonts, and more. As research shows that colour boosts readership by 80%, rich content is a powerful very way to deliver your message. You can also personalize your call-to-action buttons, and include videos, pdfs, and image carousels to make a bigger impact.
Rich Media Messages also give customers the freedom to decide how they would like to make their payments. By sending payment notifications, customers can choose if they wish to make a once off payment, or set up a customized payment plan.
Making payments as simple and straightforward as possible for customers is very important during this challenging time, and providing them with the option to pay via the channel of their choice is an efficient way to do so.
Interactive Voice Messaging (IVM) is another great solution for customers who wish to make mobile payments. With IVM, not only can customers easily pay through self-service options, but they also have the choice to connect with an agent if they prefer to do so. This also optimizes agents’ time, so that they can focus more on the customers that have requested their assistance. It gives them the opportunity to fully listen and understand the customer’s perspective, provide them with reassurance, and guide them through all of their payment options.
Sending payment reminders to customers via SMS is another gentle approach to collections, and with open rates of up to 98%, it is an effective option to ensure your outreaches are seen. By reminding customers far in advance about an upcoming payment, they have the time to decide when they would like to pay, and do not feel that they are under any pressure to make immediate payments.
Companies are being warned to avoid aggressive outbound tactics during Covid-19, as they can be highly detrimental to both customers and businesses. However, as SMS is fully personalizable, you have full control over your content and timing. You can send appropriate, friendly, and empathetic messages that will keep customers informed, and assist them with their payments at the right time.
Mobile messaging is also an extremely secure way to make payments. We integrate with many well established, reputable payment providers such as Elavon, Paypal, GlobalPayments, Encoded, Worldpay, and Stripe, so that customers can be reassured that they can quickly make a payment at any point throughout their busy day, without their security being compromised.
We would love to speak with you to better understand your current business needs, and discuss how our solutions can help you implement an effective collection and business recovery strategy. To find out more information, contact VoiceSage or request a free trial today.
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