Business Communication: A Lost Art?Posted by Jessica Oman
Now that we’re on a multitude of social networks and we all carry computers in our pockets, I often question whether our ability to connect in so many ways is actually causing a problem with our ability to communicate effectively with our customers.
I saw a humorous (and kind of sad) example of this in a Facebook forum I’m an active member of. Someone in the group posted a new message in the forum, acknowledging another member’s voice mail. Using Facebook. And then committed to emailing him later.
Why wouldn’t he just pick up the phone and call him back?
All of that extra effort when a simple phone call would do.
Now, I’m a huge fan of email communication because it makes a written record of everything. But it has its drawbacks. For example, when I need to know something – now, not later today or next week or whatever – nothing works better than picking up the phone. Email’s just too slow.
The other problem I have – maybe you have this issue too – is that sometimes when I reply to emails using my phone, whatever action I promised the recipient leaves my brain as fast as the email left my Drafts folder. Unless I input it into TeuxDeux or my CRM. I have to be really conscious of that so I don’t forget things. But I don’t want to wait until later to write those emails if I have time to do it now. And I certainly don’t want to limit my email responses to certain times of the day, because I would be committing a business faux pas that would have Ash Ambirge breathing down my neck faster than I could hit Send.
Not sure how you can best communicate with your clients? It comes down to knowing your customer. Your ideal customer. The one you want beating your door down to work with you. How do they like to communicate? What do they respond best to? Do that. And don’t mix it up if you can avoid it, like sending them a Facebook message to tell them you got their voice mail and you’ll email them later (and doing this ON A PUBLIC FORUM?!?!??? What the hell?).
If you know your ideal customer well enough, you’ll use the method of communication that will help you both reach your goals the fastest and most effectively. The sooner you sort that out, the faster you can get back to the sexy side of your business, and start selling more widgets.
Now excuse me while I go Tweet someone about a LinkedIn post they made.