What Does It Mean to "Text Like You Text Your Friends"?
We often describe Text Request as a way for your businesses to text with consumers just like you text your friends and family. But what exactly does that mean?
Here are 6 examples and case studies to help you understand what we mean by "text like you text your friends." Let's dive in!
1. Do you have a minute?
If you’re just checking in with a friend, you might text for the entire conversation. But if there’s something important, or something you need to talk through more thoroughly, you’ll often send a text to set up a call or face-to-face.
Something like, “Hey, give me a shout when you have a minute, please. No rush.”
In this case, text is basically your communications wing man.
The thing is, you can do this will all of your customers, too! A simple text to set up a call is a professional and effective way to communicate with customers and prospects. Here's an example:
“Hey [John], hoping we can find time to talk today. When are you free?”
This same approach comes in handy in many business situations, particularly in sales. It’s not life or death that you speak with the person right this second, and you're actually more likely to get a response through text, anyway.
Instead of outright calling, which is likely to be ignored, your text lets people know that you respect their schedule, and gives them an opportunity to set a time that's more convenient for them.
That’s probably what you'd do for a friend, right?
2. Would you text that to a friend?
Many businesses treat texting like their company email. That’s not good for anyone!
Text messages don't need the formality, professional signatures, or company logos usually included in emails. Text is a totally separate form of communication. That other stuff is just fluff!
When you text your friends, do you end every message with:
- First Name
- Last Name
- Phone number
- And office hours?
Dear heavens, I hope not!
After the first message you send, the recipient knows who they’re texting with. You don't need to sign off every time! The same goes for company logos.
Would you send the same picture every time you text your friends? Of course not.
The goal of texting for business is to communicate with people how they prefer to communicate. When you try to change that, everyone loses.
3. Why leave a voicemail?
We like to joke that the only people who leave voicemails are moms and salesmen. There’s a lot of truth in it!
For those under 50, it’s common to send a text instead of leaving a voicemail. Besides, if you send a voicemail, it could be hours or days before anyone listens to it, much less calls you back.
When your audience doesn't answer your calls, hang up and text them. “Hey, call me back when you get a moment, please.” Or “Hey just wanted to let you know [XYZ happened].”
That’s how friends communicate, and that’s how your business can communicate, too. When people don’t answer their phones, leave a text.
4. How formal are you when you text your friends?
Business professionals are often too formal in emails, a characteristic that doesn't transfer well to texts. For instance, you probably wouldn’t text a friend the following:
I’m sorry for the delay in my response. There has been so much going on over here that we’re all backed up. As to your question, yes, we can make that happen. But would you please provide more details so that the person I hand this off to will be on the same page? Thank you.
Best Regards, Sarah”
No! You'd probably text something like:
“Hey Jen, sorry - things are crazy right now. Yes! We can do that. Can you be more specific so I know what to tell the guys? Thanks.”
Even in this simple example, what you would text is half of what you might email!
To text with customers and prospects the same way you text your friends, drop the formality. People want to feel like you’re human, not a robot.
5. How would you follow up with friends?
People see a text within 5 seconds, on average. It’s the quickest way to give someone a heads up, which is exactly what you would do with your friends. Here are a few examples:
“Just emailed you the details for [XYZ].”
“We’ll already be in your neighborhood on [Date]. Would that afternoon work for you?”
“Hey, can you proof the [design] I just emailed you? Thanks!”
“Let me know when you’ve done [ABC], please.”
These are all examples of texting like you text your friends, and they can all be applied to your business communications. Instead of waiting for a response to your email or phone call, shoot off a text!
6. What about confirmations?
Confirming appointments and information might be the most common way to text like you text your friends. If you’re meeting up with your friends, you’ll probably send a text like one of these.
“Does Tuesday at 12 work for you?”
“Still good for lunch tomorrow?”
And if someone has to cancel last minute, you'll probably find another time that works through text. In fact, a lot of businesses keep people from cancelling their appointments by rescheduling through text!
In other cases, you need to confirm customer details. Here are some examples.
“Is [Address] still your current address?”
“You ordered [Items], right?”
A third case is when you arrive for an appointment (webinar, phone call, house call, etc.), and your customer isn’t there, or hasn’t provided everything you need.
It could be hours before they see an email. They might ignore a call. But they’ll see your text almost instantly.
“Are we still on for our call?” “We’re at your house, but we need a key.” That’s what you would probably text your friends, and that's what you can text as a business, too.
Bringing It All Together
All of these examples can be boiled down into one mindset: Instead of being formal, be human.
Be personal, and act like you’re communicating with a real person, because that’s what you’re doing! You can still be respectful and polite without being too formal or robotic.
Texting fits into this mindset, because people will more often opt for a text in place of a call, email, or voicemail.
That’s how we communicate with friends, and that’s how the general public wants to communicate with your business.