New ‘State Of Business Texting’ Survey: Consumers Have Better Experiences, Relationships With Businesses That Communicate Via Text

More than 80% of Respondents Say Insurance Companies that Text Build Closer Customer Bonds

Hi Marley, creators of the only intelligent communication platform built for the insurance industry by people who know insurance, announced the results of a new survey to determine how people prefer to electronically communicate with businesses. 85 percent of respondents indicated text messaging is their primary method of electronic communication, with 82 percent reporting that they text with both people and businesses. A randomized sampling of 1000 consumers aged 18 and up, from across the United States and Canada participated in the survey, which was conducted in June 2021.

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The poll results show just how personal text messaging is to people, as they consider texting with a business to be an indication of whether there exists a relationship with that business. If given a choice, 71 percent of people who already do business with a company would prefer to text with that company as their primary means of communication; 55 percent would prefer email as the primary channel; and 34 percent prefer the phone.

Conversely, respondents said companies with which they do not already have a relationship should not initiate contact via text message. 57 percent of those surveyed would prefer a first interaction with a company to happen through email, versus 46 percent over text. 34 percent still would rather use a traditional phone call.

The survey also bucked long-held stereotypes about older customers not wanting to use text messaging as a means of communications. In fact, 72 percent of people over 54 surveyed indicated they do prefer to text with businesses, and more than 50 percent in that cohort would participate in group chats.

“Most of us consider phones to be necessities for maintaining balance in our daily lives. They’re our immediate connection to friends, family, work, and the companies with which we do business. They allow us to project our personalities and communicate with the world,” said Mike Greene, CEO and Co-founder, Hi Marley. “The new survey detailed just how much people rely on texting to make life smoother, and enable deeper connections. As consumers, we want the companies we trust to meet us on the channels we prefer, so we can easily maintain contact without disrupting our lives, and that leads to stronger relationships between people and those brands.”

CAN PEOPLE HAVE CLOSER RELATIONSHIPS TO THEIR INSURANCE COMPANIES?

For the insurance industry in particular, the results highlight texting as a means for providers to deliver a more seamless, desirable customer experience. More than 80 percent of insurance policy holders said they would prefer to text with their insurance company or agent if that service was offered. 84 percent even said they would save an insurance company’s text number into their contact lists.

Respondents in favor of texting with their insurance companies were also open to “group chats” with other providers within the insurance ecosystem, such as rental and towing companies, auto and home repair businesses, glass replacement shops, and medical providers.

A majority (32 percent) of respondents chose “speed of response” as the most important expectation for texting with an insurance company, followed by 24/7 availability (18 percent).

While cost and coverage were unsurprisingly the most important factors for purchasing an insurance policy, nearly 20 percent of respondents ranked customer service and personal touch as more important — meaning that, in an industry that typically differentiates on small increments of price, smart insurance companies recognize the need to go above and beyond just cost and coverage to delight customers.

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