Avoya Travel is introducing a feature in its technology platform that enables advisors to chat with clients via SMS text messages on their computers. The ability to message clients in different services, like WhatsApp, is expected to be available toward the end of next year.

Avoya co-president Jeff Anderson introduced Avoya Conversations during the host agency's virtual conference Tuesday.

Advisors will access Avoya Conversations via the agency's proprietary technology platform Agent Power. While communications will appear to clients as SMS text messages, advisors can use their computers to draft and send the messages, which helps create efficiencies, Anderson said.

There will be "tiny" transaction fees associated with the service, which will begin beta testing this month, according to Anderson.

Avoya Conversations will also create a record of the conversation that will appear in customer records, trip records and lead records when it is fully integrated into Agent Power in 2021.

That data will eventually help Avoya better tailor marketing to advisors' clients, Anderson said.

"I certainly recognize that great sales people have been using text messaging for a long time," Anderson said. "But we also know there are a number of barriers and inconveniences that exist when you go from working on your laptop to trying to communicate with somebody via text messages, whether it's things as simple as copy-and-pasting links to be able to send to travelers or just being able to copy and paste text out of a quote or pricing or anything like that."

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