How do Americans actually communicate with each other? It’s a good question, and honestly finding good data about the answer to that question is rather difficult.
(I believe it’s because companies with the answer to that question like AT&T, Verizon, and Google have pretty high economic incentive to keep that information private.)
So ultimately it’s up to small companies and academics to publish information here and there about the realities of what communication patterns actually look like today. You can find some of this information in other parts of our bulletin here and here.
That being said, I was introduced this week to the most compelling study that I’ve ever seen on the topic. It turns out that Gallup (yes the polling company) decided to tackle this very subject. They called it The New Era of Communication Among Americans.
You can take a look at everything they found at the above link, but allow me to pull out some of the key highlights here.
Bet you didn’t expect to see such an equal distribution of those three! Yeah. It turns out that when you’re simply looking at the “A LOT” category, it’s a virtual tie.
“The ways Americans communicate vary significantly by age. Sending and receiving text messages is the most prevalent form of communication for Americans younger than 50. More than two-thirds of 18- to 29-year-olds say they sent and received text messages “a lot” the previous day, as did nearly half of Americans between 30 and 49. Younger Americans are also well above average in their use of cellphones, email and social media on a daily basis.”
"The use of home landline phones shows a different pattern by age than the other communication methods: it is low across all age groups, albeit slightly higher among those 65 and older. Business landline use is slightly lower among seniors."
So you can basically abandon any strategy that includes reaching people when you know they’re at home.
Finally, I’ll include their conclusion because it sums up my feelings exactly:
"One of the most striking cultural and social changes in the U.S. in recent decades has been the revolution in the ways Americans communicate. Until recently, humans were confined to communicating face to face and through letters and the traditional landline phone. Now, computer and smartphone use has dramatically accelerated, and texting, cellphones and email are the most commonly used modes of communication out of seven tested in this research. The use of social media is fourth."
If you’re happy with how many leads you’re getting a hold of, then none of this is for you. And you know that.
If you’re a part of the majority of people in the franchise world who aren’t satisfied with your contact rate, then it’s time to do something. You need to make choices today that A) fix the problem immediately as well as B) Set your business up to deal with these problems in the future.
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This article was written by Eli Robinson, General Manager of FranFunnel.