To call or to text … that is the question!
It used to be that when you called someone, there was a pretty good chance they’d picked up the phone. If not, they would definitely respond to your voicemail in a timely manner. These days, you’re lucky if someone takes your call — and as for voicemail? Many people don’t even check it EVER, let alone respond to one.
It’s 2021 and the rules around business communication have changed. It almost feels like a phone call is “retro” these days, as studies have shown that millennials prefer texting over calling for a number of reasons.
Not a millennial and have no idea why anyone would hate phone calls? Well, they find calls intrusive/disruptive and much prefer responding to people in their own time. This isn’t helped by the fact that so many calls we get these days are unwanted or spam calls, making many people hesitant to pick up the phone when it does ring.
Is text the answer?
Communicating via text has become a much more acceptable way of doing business these days, and online phone systems are set up with texting features that make it easier and more efficient to conduct business.
If all you need from clients are small bites of info in order to help them — yes and no responses, for example, or sending reminders for them to respond to — then text can be the perfect solution.
Using text to communicate with clients is certainly a timesaver, too. You often have no idea how long each call with a customer will take. Endless games of phone tag can be frustrating, but a simple text offering information (or prompting the client to call at their leisure) can avoid this entirely.
The argument for calling
Despite all this, picking up the phone and actually calling people does still have its place in modern society.
SPEED: If you need an answer fast, calling someone can be the best route. Emails can be ignored for days (or forever) and people sometimes read texts and decide to respond later (but forget). Phone calls are immediate — and more powerful than ever, because they’re surprisingly rare.
CONNECTION: If you want to make a real connection with someone (or to convey a message with a certain tone), the sound of your voice is always going to be better than an impersonal text. After all, in a world where we mostly communicate online, a personal connection can go a long way.
AGE: Consider the demographic you’re working with. While millennials may eschew phone calls in favour of text, this isn’t necessarily the case for everyone — especially an older audience. You may find that some clients appreciate the personal touch of a call, and communicating in that way can help build business relationships.
Whether you prefer to call or text, it’s important to consider what will best serve your clients — and what communications systems will best suit your business.
Having a plan from the outset will help you run your business more effectively and save you from shelling out for services you don’t need. (Like a landline, hint hint.)