Tag Archives: email

To Email, to Call or to Text: That is the Question

Shakespeare_ComputerAre you sending emails to schedule simple phone calls? If so, you are wasting your time!

Do you often email your customers or prospects in order to set up a time to have a phone conversation? Have you sat down and calculated the efficiency of this approach?

I find myself increasingly frustrated with the number of people who instead of picking up the phone, will send an email to schedule a time for something that would be a very quick conversation. This commonly results in several back and forth email messages with alternate times and then ultimately one party may cease to respond.  Days if not entire weeks may pass and to no avail. All of this could have been avoided by simply picking up the phone and having a 1-2 minute phone conversation or the message could be relayed in the form of a text message.

Why Email is Ineffective?

study conducted by the Radicati Group in 2015, illustrated that the average business user sends and receives an average of 122 emails per day, a number that is expected to increase to 126 messages by the end of 2019.  As no surprise, the average email only has a 20% open rate and a shockingly low response rate of only 6%.  This means that for every 100 emails you send, only 20% (20 emails) are being opened and of those 20 emails, only 6% (1 email) are being replied to.  That works out to 1 email reply for every 100 emails sent, so essentially a response rate of 1.2%.

Alternatives: Phone Call or Text Message?

According to a study by eWeek, 80% of people are currently using texting for business however, studies have shown that only 2531%  of people prefer text messages to phone calls.

The most preferred business activities conducted by text messaging according to the Harris Poll are:

  1. Checking order status (38%)
  2. Scheduling or changing appointments (32%)
  3. Make or confirm reservations (31%)

It must be noted that all of the above imply that there is an existing or soon to be existing business relationship.

In the sales process, texting can lead to conversion gains in excess of 100% however texting a prospect prior to establishing contact with them can not only adversely effect contact and conversion rates, it may also be illegal depending on the state or province you reside in.

That being said, how do you know when the most effective means of communication is to call, text or send an email?

When to Send a Text Message:

  • You have an existing relationship with your client
  • Your client has directly provided you with their cell phone number
  • Your message is brief, uncomplicated and only requires 1 or 2 basic single-sentence responses (i.e. setting up, changing or confirming a meeting time, following up on an order, etc)

When to Make a Phone Call:

  • You do not have an existing relationship with a prospect
  • The prospect or client did not give you their cell phone number directly. If you received their cell phone number from a 3rd party, they likely have no idea who you are so call them and speak with them first.  If you simply do not have their cell phone number, call their office number.
  • The subject matter you would like to discuss is more involved than and exchange of 1 or 2 sentences

When to Send an Email:

  • You have had a conversation on the phone or via text message and the recipient has requested additional information and/or details in the form of an email. Although the response rate for email is still low, if the prospect or client has requested it and knows to look out for your email, your response rate will increase. Sending unsolicited email is illegal in Canada and can result in fines of up to $1M for individuals and up to $10M for corporations.

In this day and age, it is all too easy to hide behind a computer screen.  As a result we, are all constantly bombarding each other with online messages and emails and in my opinion, they have simply lost their effectiveness as a communication tool.

So let the take home message be, don’t be afraid to pick up the phone and make a call.  Since most people don’t do that anymore period, that act alone will make you stand out among your competition.  We are all human beings and require some sort of true human interaction and relationships whether they are personal or business in nature, require that interaction in order to grow and flourish.

Happy sales my friends and the next time you’re tempted to hide behind your computer screen and send an email, remember that there is only a 1% chance it will even be replied to, so suck it up Princess and pick up that phone!

Cheers,

TSW

Please follow and like The Travelling Saleswoman:
0

Reasons Why the iPhone is Inferior to BlackBerry for Business

And Why I’m Ditching my iPhone and Going Back to Blackberry

iphone_trash_300x2991

When I first hopped on the bandwagon and switched to an iPhone, I quickly realized how useless it is for business and that it was much more of a toy.  Sure the iPhone is pretty, has lots of fancy apps and you can play all sorts of games, however the applications for business use are seriously lacking. Yesterday I experienced the last and final straw with this device which pushed me over the edge to toss my iPhone and go back to BlackBerry.  However, before I get to that, I’ll share the other primary reasons why I find the iPhone inferior to BlackBerry for business use.

  1. Keyboard (touch vs QWERTY)

blackberry-classic-QWERTY.0

In business, most of us are used to typing on a computer on a daily basis.  For me, typing out emails on a touch screen keyboard is completely aggravating. Even more so is the autocorrect feature which consistently seems to add the most inappropriate words and makes it difficult to use the words you intended to use.  Furthermore, as a woman who likes to have nice nails, you can’t have them if you intend to use the touch screen keyboard since the screen will not respond to nail tips.   I realize this sounds girly, but I never thought I’d have to choose between being able to use my phone and having a nice manicure.  I suppose I could have invested in a stylus, but I’m sure I would have misplaced that in less than 24 hours.  So, bye-bye manicure it was.

  1. Email Access

nowifiOn my iPhone, in order for me to access my work email (which is an IMAP account), I had to manually disable my wifi and use my cellular data to send and receive email.  Apple apparently has no solution to this problem and nicely told me that if I want to use this “old” email set-up (which I obviously have no say in) that I must routinely disable my wifi to check if I received any new email.  Furthermore, if I sent an email while out of a wifi zone and then my phone picks up a wifi network without me noticing, my sent email could sit in my outbox until I leave the wifi area.  How ridiculously inconvenient is that??? I never experienced this issue on a BlackBerry.

 

  1. Available Travel Apps

BBTravelNotificationI was spoiled by BlackBerry’s Travel Manager app.  With zero effort on my part, this app picked up all of my travel arrangements, put them in my calendar, gave me notifications (some of which were even before the airline itself would announce them) and provided timely reminders for anything I could think of.  When I switched to an iPhone, I was extremely disappointed that there wasn’t and app that was even remotely close to being as efficient as the BlackBerry Travel App.  Tripit, I was told was the “closest” and that is a long shot! All travel arrangements have to be manually inputted into this app. If you are lucky, when you manually forward email your reservation to the app, it will acknowledge it 25-50% of the time.  The other 50-75% of the time it doesn’t understand the reservation and you have to enter ALL of your travel info MANUALLY!!! Who has time for this??? Sometimes I have over 20 days of reservations booked for flights, hotels, car rentals etc. and to have to enter this data manually? Forget it! Even worse is that it will only notify you of a flight change or delay if you pay for the premium version. Did I mention that BlackBerry Travel was FREE?

  1. Battery Life

iphone-LOWbatteryThe iPhone is also seriously lagging in this department.  I have to charge it 1-2 times daily whereas my BlackBerry would last at least one full day if not more. This is extremely inconvenient when travelling where you don’t always have access to a power outlet.

  1. Security

How to lock files and folder with password

To date, I was willing to accept all of these faults I mentioned above and managed to live with them for almost a year, but yesterday I had my last straw with this device.  Yesterday morning I unlocked my phone only to discover that someone was remotely browsing through old files and photos that I had “permanently deleted” on my device. They also accessed my Facebook account (which I could see) and who knows what else!  If this hacker had access to that information, they clearly had access to all of the other information on my device including where I live.  How scary is that? So much for confidentiality! In business, confidentiality is of utmost importance, so why put all of that at risk?  There is a reason the government uses BlackBerry.  All of the information is secure and can be easily encrypted.  The security on a BlackBerry is unbeatable.

BACKUP

The only place to back-up your iPhone data is on the iCloud or on  iTunes. If your account has been compromised, what is the point to putting it back in an unsecure zone? There is no direct secure way to back up files to a PC or encrypt files securely.  This is a very serious flaw!

VULNERABLE APPS

Recently in excess of 25,000 iPhone and iPad Apps have vulnerabilities that allow hackers easy access into your iPhone and your iCloud. You can read more about this massive security flaw here.

To check if any the apps you are using are vulnerable go check this website by clicking here . I realized that I had quite a few vulnerable apps on my phone including but not limited to:

  • Yahoo mail
  • Skype
  • Soundcloud
  • Find my iPhone <-Yes seriously!!! Thanks Apple!
  • Battery Doctor

So, all of that being said, I got rid of my iPhone yesterday and switched back to a BlackBerry which I love.  Sure it doesn’t have all of the bells and whistles but it is a workhorse and it is secure.  Like most business professionals, I need to do work on my phone, not play games and the BlackBerry is the best device on the market for that purpose.

If you are a business professional using an iPhone, make sure to either delete your cloud account or at minimum change your Apple ID and all other passwords weekly, otherwise you run a very high risk of all of your data being compromised.

I hope that you found this information helpful and have an opportunity to make the appropriate changes before your phone and consequently your data is compromised.

The iPhone is a toy.  The BlackBerry is a Business tool.

Keep your data safe fellow business men and women.

 

TSW

Listening to a little Back in Black

Back-in-Black

 

Please follow and like The Travelling Saleswoman:
0