We no longer live in a world where calling is the only means of communication. The trend of mass text messaging isn’t only for personal relations, but for businesses as well. The time-honored method for communicating with customers has always been picking up the phone and calling. Even in business today, it’s stressed that dialing numbers is still an effective way to get through to customers, but is it the only way? And in 2018, is it in fact the most effective way?
Can you get out a message to dozens, even hundreds of people with just a phone call or automated phone calls? Rather than taking the time to constantly pound the phone, we can use text messages as a way to reach a target audience within a matter of seconds. With this in mind, how can we see calling as anything other than old news? Here we will discuss the most effective way of getting through to customers in our digital age and how to make the biggest impact.
Know Your Audience
In the debate over whether calling or mass texting is a more efficient means of reaching out to your audience, you have to first know your audience. Who are the people that you’re trying to get a hold of? Let’s try to be logical about this and realistic. You need to first know the age of those that make up your audience. This is not to say that those in an older age bracket are not tech-savvy, but a vast majority of the baby boomer generation prefer an old-fashioned phone call in lieu of a text message. In fact, there’s plenty of elderly individuals who don’t even own a cell phone. In this case, picking up the phone and calling will get through to your demographic better than text messaging.
The same goes for a younger crowd, where texting is going to get through to them better than a generation who hates picking up for unknown numbers. For the busy Gen Xer or Millennial, they don’t have time for phone calls. Consider those who are attending college; many schools will send out mass text messages to reach their audience to let them know about updates regarding their school, such as snow days or closed parking lots due to construction. If you’re someone who is on your way to work and reading emails on your phone, you don’t have time to answer a phone call, but a text message to let you know your phone bill is due soon is a more effective way of conveying that message.
The argument between calling and text messaging is not strictly as black and white as old vs young individuals. It is simply a matter of lifestyle preferences. The average baby boomer is retired and will be closer to home, near a landline where they can answer a call from a doctor or store that is trying to reach them. The younger generation is more active and adept at multitasking. To them, life is easier when they don’t have their ear pressed to the phone.
Gauge the Situation
If you need to deliver a mass texting for business to a large quantity of people, you are better off sending a message along these guidelines. You may need to dictate lengthy information and perhaps even dates and locations. Not everyone has a pen and paper on them when you call, and they could forget these details as soon as you’ve told them. By sending information via text, the individual will have all the information they need in front of them to refer back to when the time comes to recall pertinent details.
Say that there’s a question that you need a quick answer to. Far too often, those who receive this kind of communication via text message will be in the middle of something and completely forget to respond. If there is a time-sensitive message to be delivered, this situation would not be ideal. Rather, a quick phone call where hopefully the person will answer can help you get that quick answer you were looking for.
Another factor to keep in mind is the nature of the information being communicated. There are times that you may want to skip text messages if a message you need to send will contain sensitive and personal material. In the healthcare industry, for example, companies handle confidential information, such as an individual’s social security number, credit card information, and personal medical records. A text message confirming an appointment is fine, but sending confidential information via text may not only breach laws, but lose clientele. A phone call in this case is the way to go.
Calling vs. mass text messaging is highly contingent upon the type of information you wish to relay and the details surrounding your audience. Not every situation is going to be solely appropriate for text messages, nor calling. For businesses, you need to sit down and analyze your audience, the message being delivered, and the timeliness with which you need the information conveyed. With these factors kept in mind, you will be able to make a more informed decision on whether or not you should text or call. Many businesses will go through a designated period of time where they’re assessing which option is a better fit for their audience. By evaluating which mode of communication works better for your needs, you’ll be able better reach and engage your consumers.