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Taking the Best Path Forward with A2P Messaging

Global business messaging, otherwise known as application-to-person (A2P) messaging, has overtaken traditional person-to-person (P2P) messaging in recent years. The market has seen considerable growth, with projections that businesses will spend $40 billion on A2P messaging by 2024.
Driven by the need for global businesses to acquire deeper customer understanding, employee engagement, and omnichannel offerings, SMS is now an established and expected method of interaction. Cloud-based communications solutions like UCaaS and CCaaS can provide the messaging interoperability that businesses need to enhance the customer experience, increase productivity, and protect the bottom line through better engagement.
What’s more, SMS has proven itself a leading player against over-the-top (OTT) and other messaging services, on account of its ubiquity and reliability. SMS is standard on all phones — smartphones or otherwise — so it’s possible to reach consumers at scale, no matter what device they’re using. As a result, SMS benefits from a 98% read rate, and higher engagement than other communications channels.
But as the market continues to grow, businesses have numerous A2P SMS solutions from which to choose. So, how do businesses know which solution is right for them and which provider they should trust to ensure seamless global communications for their customers? Partnering with a global telecommunications provider can add value to a business’s SMS strategy in three key areas:
1. Unrivalled service and delivery
SMS is a telecom provider’s bread and butter, something they have years’ worth of expertise and experience in. Seamless global coverage is key for international businesses, and by working with a global telecom provider, companies gain access to a global network through just one partner. Businesses can have confidence in delivering a reliable low-latency exchange across an international infrastructure, sending timely notifications and alerts for the highest quality customer experience. Messages can be delivered at scale with flexible APIs, making business messaging straightforward and automated for world-class quality of service (QoS) customers can really trust.
2. Increased visibility and report granularity
End-to-end visibility of SMS traffic is vital. Businesses must have the ability to track SMS deliverability and performance, QoS metrics, and more — in real-time — to enable greater and improved actionable insights. By working with a telecom provider, these insights are available to improve customer engagement and tailor business communications to customers’ specific requirements. Two-way conversational messaging offers a more personalized customer experience. Alphanumerical sender IDs and long codes dedicated to a business enable customers to respond directly, providing companies with the opportunity to build one-on-one relationships with customers and a more differentiated experience.
For deeper analysis and insight into message delivery, sophisticated reporting tools offer options to download call detail records for additional data, which can be easily delivered and standardized across regions.
3. Fraud protection
Messaging fraud is on the rise. Within the last year, one of the biggest global OTT messaging platforms encountered a significant breach of security as fraudsters developed fake accounts and impersonated legitimate users to access personal information and send unwanted messages. These spam messages have the capacity to put a huge dent in a brand’s reputation, often incurring uncoverable revenue losses and decreasing customer loyalty.
And it’s not only a matter of spamming. Smishing is another approach in which fraudsters can gain access to users’ personal information. A typical example of this is when a genuine user receives an SMS stating that their customer account has been deactivated due to suspicious activities. These messages often have a URL link and time limit attached, giving users 48 hours to click through and rectify the issue.
International fraud is a complex and ever-changing market. Enterprises need to keep pace with continuously evolving forms of attack to protect business messaging, and prevent spamming and smishing attempts. Mitigating the impact of attacks that have already taken place no longer suffices; proactive fraud prevention is now vital to shield brand reputations and maintain customer loyalty. Working with the right provider with the right expertise and experience can significantly reduce the attack surface and number of threats that can penetrate business communications, while also protecting the bottom line and enhancing the user experience. Outsourcing A2P SMS fraud prevention to a telecom provider allows companies to focus on their core business, and not soak up precious employee resources. Secure, constant business messaging protection via a machine learning-driven approach will help identify and tackle SMS fraud in real-time.
The benefits of utilizing A2P messaging as part of a business’s unified communications strategy are increasingly diverse. From improved service delivery times and reporting to proactive fraud prevention, companies can deliver reliable and timely SMS communications on a global scale to their whole customer base. With quality direct routes enabling SMS delivery speeds of less than 15 seconds, BICS already has the tools necessary to deliver a high-quality and effective worldwide solution for businesses to simplify SMS provision. Offering a superior QoS, experience, and engagement, businesses can enhance the customer experience and protect the bottom line.
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