We all love to communicate, but who would have thought that messaging would one day become the communication method of choice for the vast majority of us?
Research shows that most people today prefer to use messages, instead of phone calls or written letters. Trillions of SMS texts are sent around the world each year.
However, SMS messages lack the rich media functionality and chat capability of consumer apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Viber, WeChat, Skype or iMessage.
This is where Rich Communication Services (RCS) comes in – the next generation of SMS messaging.
RCS provides the rich message experience that modern consumers have come to expect, from a service that, like SMS messaging, is native to your inbox and not provided by an external app.
Here’s how RCS messaging is set to revolutionise customer communications and offer huge benefits to your consumers and your business.
How RCS messaging works
RCS is predicted to become the world’s biggest messaging platform by 2021. In fact, earlier this year, China became the first country to mandate that all future 5G smartphones in the country must support Rich Communication Services.
As with SMS, RCS offers a messaging service via your phone’s native inbox. However, unlike SMS, which is still text-based, RCS messaging supports rich media, such as video, audio, images, texts, buttons & group chat.
Communication apps (Whatsapp, Viber etcetera) have these features, but the difference is that RCS is linked to your mobile number. It doesn’t require the download of any apps. This means that customer communication will become easier than ever.
Customers can now be reached via without having to install any special apps on their phone, and still receive rich media messages with high-quality video, audio, images, texts, quick-reply buttons, chatbots and location sharing.
RCS will revolutionise customer communication
RCS messaging will change the way that brands interact with their customers.
It is the perfect channel for consumers to use when engaging with a business. The rich media experience facilitates trusted conversations, without the customer ever needing to leave their RCS inbox.
Because RCS is a chatbot platform as well, an ‘app’ like experience is created. When combined with AI, these chatbots enable Conversational-AI and Conversation Commerce.
Using RCS, businesses can send out their branding and logos, and create visual interactive campaigns with features consumers already recognise, like images and carousels with action buttons to navigate to other products, or to confirm an appointment. And all of this can be done without, you guessed it, the intervention of any other apps.
Gartner foresees that by 2021, over 50% of enterprises will spend more on bots & chatbot creation than traditional mobile development. If you use RCS, no additional apps or developments will be required.
SMS has been plagued by fraudulent behaviour and it is often difficult to spot or prevent scams.
RCS provides protection to both brands and consumers via the Universal Profile standard v2.2, a message verification and brand certification process. This ensures that consumers are interacting with legitimate parties.
Furthermore, RCS messaging is a mobile carrier-based service, which is highly regulated and subject to lawful intercept rules. Unlike Whatsapp and other messaging applications, which deliver messages with end-to-end encryption, RCS and its 3rd party platforms are secured over TLS by the carrier interfaces and the mobile device, which makes the data secure point-to point.
Integrating Rich Communications Services technology into our Soprano Connect API
Soprano has now added RCS capability to our multi-channel Soprano Connect API.
We have made it incredibly easy to design an interactive RCS experience with a drag & drop designer. These can even be triggered via the Soprano Connect API.
Every RCS order can be configured with a campaign that delivers a traditional SMS to any device that cannot receive an RCS message. We are also soon to release a Rich Media Message that will deliver an RCS like experience via SMS, so that brands can deliver a rich media experience via both RCS and SMS.
Are you excited about the impact RCS will have on your business?