The Difference Between Chat Messaging and Text Messaging

Businesses nowadays have a variety of ways of reaching and engaging with their customers. The issue isn’t how to communicate and stay in touch with your prospects, but how to do it effectively. With over five billion mobile users worldwide, you may be wondering: should you choose chat messaging or text messaging?

Let’s look at the differences between the two and help you determine which one is better suited for your brand.

Chat Messaging vs Text Messaging: What’s the Difference?

The main difference between the two types of messaging systems is that one needs an internet connection while the other one only needs a cellphone plan.

Chat messaging options like Facebook Messenger, Whatsapp, Telegram, and others will require a network connection, whether it’s a mobile data plan, Wi-Fi, or ethernet.

Text messaging (or SMS) has been around for almost two decades, is widely popular, and requires no internet connection (just a cellphone plan) to be able to connect and communicate with other contacts.

Which One Should You Choose?

At first glance, both options offer the same outcome – a way to connect and communicate with your customers via mobile messaging.

At a closer look, you will find that each option comes with its advantages and disadvantages, which can influence the effectiveness of your marketing efforts.

The Benefits of Text Messaging:

  • SMS marketing is permission-based, which means that consumers have agreed to receive branded messages from you. That can make it easier to engage with your prospects in a way that doesn’t feel disruptive.
  • Most people who own a smartphone also have an ongoing cellphone plan, which means that you can engage with your customers virtually anytime.
  • You can easily track and measure your text messages and see which ones are performing well and which need to be adjusted.
  • Consumers have actually said that text messaging is their preferred way of communicating with brands.

The Disadvantages of Text Messaging:

  • You can’t include multimedia options like images or GIFs in traditional SMS messages. So, you need to be very creative to grab your audience’s interest with such a short message.
  • Text messaging usually has to be brief. Customers simply aren’t interested in reading long text messages.

The Advantages of Chat Messaging:

  • Most people will prefer chats over talking on the phone.
  • Because most messaging apps are end-to-end encrypted, people trust the content received through those media. As a result, chat messages have very high open and click rates (even higher than email.)
  • You can send rich visuals via chat messaging, such as images, videos, animations, and more. This can help elevate your marketing efforts and keep communication more engaging.

The Disadvantages of Chat Messaging:

  • As mentioned before, you need an internet connection for these systems to work. Not all of your customers have access to an internet connection, especially via their phones. Some people may not have smartphones or a good data plan.
  • Depending on the type of chat, your customers may need to download or use a chat program, such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
  • You cannot typically send bulk messages.

Add Text Messaging To Your Marketing Plan

As you can see, both options have their pros and cons. Ideally, you should use a combination of chat and text messaging to appeal to a wider audience and communicate with your customers in their preferred method.

If you need help building or refining your text/chat marketing, don’t hesitate to get in touch with the experts at Lucro. Our software brings all of your online messaging into one convenient inbox, so you can chat with your customers in the way they prefer while easily managing all the communications in one place. You can schedule a demo, send us a message to learn more, or give us a call at 707-329-3501 and one of our staff will be more than happy to chat with you.

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