BT brings RCS Business Messaging for businesses in the UK

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BT has announced that its mobile network EE is the first to partner with Google to bring RCS Business Messaging (RBM) to businesses in the UK.

RCS is the next generation of mobile messaging, included in the latest GSMA 5G standard. Through its Smart Messaging platform, BT enables brands and consumers to connect and communicate via richer, more relevant and actionable messages.

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Mobile users with existing and new Android devices already benefit from RCS today, with over 2.5 million active users on the EE network and around 400 million RCS users globally. EE subscribers, along with those on BT, Plusnet, and other MVNOs hosted on the EE network, can use RCS to not only interact with their friends and family, but also benefit from businesses unlocking enhanced customer experiences.

Businesses like Papa John’s have already seen the benefits of RCS Business Messaging (RBM), having run a three-day campaign via messaging partner Infobip for a vegan pizza offer. The fully customisable branding provided an app-like experience for customers.

Giles Codd, Marketing Director at Papa John’s (GB) Ltd, said: “Our first RCS campaign resulted in 23 percent higher sales than SMS outreach. The interactive, branded content and images offer a more engaging experience for our customers, and it allows us to broaden our offer by giving customers more choices. The customer ultimately feels more in control, and Papa John’s can deliver a better service.”

BT’s Consumer division has also trialed RBM for a recent Samsung Galaxy S20 pre-order campaign. The campaign delivered a step change in customer engagement, driving a 5x improvement when compared to traditional channels such as SMS and email.

Steve Best, MD of Customer Solutions at BT’s Enterprise Unit, said: “We’re excited to be partnering with Google to incorporate RCS Business Messaging into our Smart Messaging portfolio. RCS brings a number of updated features for businesses, enabling them to enrich their interactions with consumers. We’re already seeing the benefits of RBM through early stage pilots, and we’re looking forward to further developing this powerful channel to enable businesses to enhance their customer experience through messaging.”

”We are delighted to be working with BT to help enable businesses to provide their customers in the UK with upgraded experiences,” said Tim Atkinson, Business Development at Google. ”With RCS Business Messages, businesses can send more interactive and useful messages to their customers. This means that a retailer can send an engaging carousel of photos of their product, and customers can interact further with the business all without leaving the messaging app.”

Utilising Google’s RCS Business Messaging platform, BT enables businesses to engage with their customers more effectively through RCS. Businesses have the opportunity to create interactive experiences directly within the native messaging client, without customers needing to download a dedicated app. This can be used to powerful effect for businesses, such as for sharing latest offers, providing support, or tracking deliveries.

Key features of RCS Business Messaging include:

An enriched customer experience – Businesses can engage with their customers (opted in for messaging) with a fully branded experience, including rich media, carousels and prompted replies.

Increased customisation – RCS Business Messaging is configurable to individual brand preferences. Replies and actions are built in, making it easier for consumers to interact with messages, providing rich customer insight and increased conversion. Read receipts also enable businesses to better measure the success of their campaigns.

Enhanced customer service – RCS Business Messaging can enable ChatBot customer service for E-Tickets, promotional QR codes, live tracking of deliveries and mobile payments.