When and Why Sales Professionals Should Text Clients

The popularity of texting seems as intuitive as, well, texting itself. The natural appeal of sending short, electronic messages using a mobile device is proven by the near ubiquitous use of the tool and by statistics. According to a 2015 study of U.S. smartphone use by the Pew Research Center, 97% of those surveyed used text messaging, making it the most frequently used app. More compelling are statistics reporting that virtually all text messages are read by recipients, usually within minutes of receipt. There’s no comparison with email, which tends to accumulate in inboxes to near unmanageable levels. From my own experience, I can start the day with 100 emails, which requires a laborious process of scanning and prioritizing before deciding which ones need my immediate attention. Ditching the Inbox? So, does this mean that sales professionals should ditch email for text messaging? Not at all. There is a time and a place for texting within sales relationships, just as there are times when it is appropriate to send an email, make a phone call, or schedule a meeting. The purpose of the communication should drive use of the tool. Technology, however fun or cool it may be, should never be the determining factor. I use text messaging with clients when it makes sense, not as a regular way to communicate. Some texts are tactical: I just got to...

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