Communication is one of the most innate qualities of the human race. We crave conversation. We yearn for connection. We must engage with one another!
Okay, maybe the human race doesn’t want to talk all the time. Sometimes, there’s nothing more desirable than sitting in a quiet room with a good book or your meditative thoughts.
But eventually, instinct will take over, and you will want to engage with the living world once more.
In honor of the art of communication, last week, we conducted a poll asking you which way you prefer to stay in contact with your loved ones. This week, we reveal your responses, plus we leave a nugget for you to ponder on for our deeper dive next week.
The official results broke down into the following six categories:
FaceTime/Video Chat — 6.7%
When video chatting hit the mainstream with Skype in 2003, followed by Apple’s and Google’s competing services for mobile phones nearly a decade later, it was deemed a revolutionary way to connect people across long distances. While this may still hold true today, video chatting is one of the lesser preferred communication tools that our poll takers chose.
Face-to-Face Conversation — 6.7%
Face-to-face conversation is by far the oldest communication method on our response list (for obvious reasons). Unfortunately, speaking face-to-face with a loved one isn’t always as accessible as choosing a more technologically advanced approach, especially if these family members are far away from each other.
Social Media Private Messaging — 6.7%
Since garnering public attention in 2003 with MySpace and passing the primordial torch over to Facebook in 2006, social media has played a large part in society’s lives ever since. Unfortunately, our survey highlights that private messaging hasn’t quite caught on as much as social media’s public side.
Social Media Public Posts/Comments — 13.3%
Social media is built for mass population conversation — thus, the “social” part of social media’s name. As a result, it probably comes as no surprise that our voters chose public posts, tags, comments, and shared content as the second most popular form of staying connected with friends and family.
Phone Calls — 33.3%
The tried and true method of communication, phone calls have been connecting people to each other all across the globe since the members of the American Telegraph and Telephone Company (you know them now as AT&T) built the first telephone line in 1877. Despite the technology that is available today, phone calls are still tied for our voters’ number one preferred method of reaching out to loved ones.
Text Messaging — 33.3%
Like many aspects of technology, text messaging has come a long way. Before touchscreens or even keyboard-equipped BlackBerry phones, texting started as a somewhat primitive way to send short messages to friends and family in lieu of a phone call.
To even write a message as simple as, “Sorry, I’m going to be late,” users had to repeatedly tap the 9 dialing buttons on their non-smart cell phones to spell out words. This time-consuming task led to abbreviated language – “Sry, I’m gonna b l8.” – and paved the way for texting advances, such as T9.
The holy grail of texting, however, would ultimately be ushered in by smartphones that could utilize touchscreen interfaces to replicate various types of typing experiences.
Because of texting’s gradual evolution, this method of communication is still one of the quickest, simplest, and most convenient ways to connect with family and friends.
A Shortlist of Marketing Communication Tactics
Go ahead and take a look at this list of responses again. What do you see?
This list doesn’t just highlight how people prefer to stay connected. It’s also a shortlist of ways that marketers and sales associates have tried to engage customers over the years:
- FaceTime/Video Chat to provide customer service.
- Face-to-Face via door-to-door sales, in-store representatives, etc.
- Social Media Private Messaging to offer exclusive company coupons and deals.
- Social Media Public Posts/Comments to provide customer service and invoke sales.
- Phone Calls via telemarketing.
- Text Messaging to provide order updates, exclusive company coupons and deals, etc.
For Next Week…
Out of the list above, look at the two preferred methods of communication that our poll takers chose: phone calls and text messaging.
Now think about how the marketing industry has already used one of these methods to impact society and how the other method of communication has the potential to follow in its predecessor’s footsteps.
What are the positives of using these communication bridges as marketing tools? What are the negatives? Do the pros outweigh the cons, or vice versa?
Join us on The Anchor next week as our team discusses how you can use this information to benefit your customers and your brand.
Thanks for reading, and stay tuned!
* This survey was distributed through Seafoam’s social media channels. Participants were only allowed to vote once. Answers could not be changed after submissions were finalized. All data and information transmitted through this survey were completely anonymous.