Text Request Creates 2-Way Online Texting Software
Chattanooga tech startup Text Request is revolutionizing business communication with a platform designed to provide real-time, 2-way text conversations between customers and businesses.
Text Request enables consumers to text their favorite businesses, just like they text friends and family. The company is fulfilling its mission by allowing the public to use standard text messaging to request and receive information from small businesses, schools, non-profits, and more.
A Pew Research Center study cites that 33 percent of American adults prefer texting to all other forms of communication, and that 95 percent of Americans under the age of 18 are active texters. Additionally, a RingCentral survey shows that 78 percent of people wish they could have a text conversation with a business.
Texting for business is expected to continue growing rapidly as mobile Americans transition from call-based to text-based communication. Businesses can take this data as a sign that consumers would rather text them than call.
"These days people don't want to make calls or send emails," said Brian Elrod, the company's co-founder and CEO. "Text Request is easy, fast, and at their fingertips—and that makes customers happy."
How to Use Text Request
There are no apps to download. Consumers simply send a message to that particular business' 10-digit text number, just like they would any cell phone.
Businesses can initiate conversations and respond to texts in real-time through their online account. It takes a business about 60 seconds to sign up, choose a number, and start texting. Texts can be managed from any internet-connected device.
Text Request is not a mass texting or SMS marketing tool, and users will never receive unsolicited messages from the company, nor the businesses they choose to communicate with. Other than standard text messaging rates from cell phone providers, Text Request is completely free to consumers.
How Text Request was Created
Text Request was conceptualized by Jamey Elrod, along with co-founder and chief technologist Rob Reagan, after discussing a restaurant trip during which she and husband Brian thought, "we wish we could just text our server."
"Our business platform uses custom-designed technology to put our users in control of communications with their customers," said Reagan. "With our tool, businesses can handle 10X as many text messages in the same time they could handle one phone call."
The platform allows businesses to collect, synthesize, and respond to incoming customer messages.
Launch & Early Users
Text Request rolled out a beta launch in summer of 2014 to a diverse set of initial customers within a variety of consumer segments, including hospitality, education, places of worship, and food and beverage.
These beta test users and others have encouraged their customers to contact them through the Text Request platform, and have reported growing satisfaction with the tool.
"More and more of our guests are beginning to prefer texting the front desk instead of calling," said Andrew Arnold, front desk customer service specialist at the local Springhill Suites Marriott, one of the initial beta customers.
"The value to our customers comes in the simplicity of the service from their perspective, coupled with the ease of accommodation and efficiency from the business' perspective."
Text Request is currently expanding nationally, and is performing additional testing in various markets across the country. To see a demo of Text Request, click here.