The need for convenience, speed and efficiency has turned texting into a primary form of personal communication for most of us. However, business text messaging has become increasingly common in all sizes of businesses for the same reasons. In fact, using text to communicate with customers, colleagues and prospects is considered mainstream business behavior in today’s modern world. While it’s fun and easy to send an abbreviation-filled, emoji ridden message to a friend or family, the rules are so much different when texting clients, colleagues and your boss.
Using business text messaging as a method of communication requires us to be hyper aware of how we are communicating our message. Maintaining professionalism is critical to developing and fostering relationships with those we engage with each and every day. Here are 6 tried and true tips for practicing proper business text messaging etiquette.
Tip 1: Keep it
There are many reasons why we prefer receiving texts, but more importantly, they are brief and to the point. We know that when we hear the ‘buzz’ or ‘ding’, we can usually glance at our phone and immediately read the message without it taking too much of our time. Text is considered a high priority, short format form of communication with a near 100% open and read rate. As a general rule, it’s best to use business text messaging much different than emailing, engaging in social media or even a phone call. Being able to keep messages short and concise helps communicate the point more efficiently and more effectively.
Tip 2: Check your tone
I’m sure we’ve all experienced a time or two where we misinterpreted someone’s tone through a text message. Tone can be tricky with typed communication… it can be hard to convey or demonstrate. It’s even harder with business text messaging, where it could be easy to sound terse. Take ample time to draft the message to say what you’d like to say. Make sure to write in complete sentences to prevent sounding too abrupt and avoid typing in caps. It’s always a good idea to read your message out loud to make sure your message can’t be perceived any other way than it’s intended to sound. A text message doesn’t allow for a lot of subtlety however has a lot of room for misinterpretation.
Tip 3: Be mindful of the time
It’s imperative that business text messaging is only used during normal business hours. It goes without saying that you wouldn’t call a client with a brilliant idea right before you climbed into bed for the evening, so make sure to not text them at that hour, either. Absolutely avoid using text on the weekends or early in the mornings. Texting needs to be about convenience for both you and your customers and shouldn’t be abused or overused. You never want your communication to feel intrusive to customers or prospects.
Tip 4: Be clear in your purpose
Before you send a text, make sure you ask yourself what the goal of the text is and what you want from the recipient? Do you want them to respond to questions you sent in an email? Do you want to confirm a meeting time? Is there a piece of critical information you’re waiting on from them? Whatever the case, it might seem like common sense but it’s critically important to be as clear as possible in your text.
Tip 5: Reply promptly
One of the biggest benefits of texting is how fast it is. Texting often conveys a sense of immediacy. When you receive a message from a customer or prospect, be sure to respond promptly. The same is true when you text a customer, they’ll likely respond within minutes. With you driving communication through business text messaging, make it your responsibility to keep this momentum going. Respect your customer’s time and hold their attention by always responding quickly.
Tip 6: Proofread
Although texting is more casual and conversational by nature, you need to still maintain a high level of professionalism when engaging in business text messaging. Typos and grammatical errors can give a negative impression of you and your brand. Proofreading is critical before sending anything in written form. With texts being an easy medium to share, they can be sent to others to weigh in on when in doubt. While we’ve all been guilty of an accidental typo due to overzealous autocorrect, always be sure to carefully proofread your texts as you would an email or any other correspondence.
If you will follow these 6 business text messaging tips, you will be viewed as someone who is professional, considerate and respectful when engaging with customers and prospects. Overall, this impacts your customer’s experience for the best.
TextBetter™ is a business texting service that makes it easy to send or receive texts from your landline number. Our cloud-based service effortlessly integrates into your existing business model, without having to install new software or change how you do business. Through our three separate product offerings, we proudly cater to organizations of all sizes: TextBetter Basic, TextBetter Business, TextBetter Enterprise. t 6;\lsd