Where’s the Face to Face Contact?

In this digital age, face to face contact is becoming something of the past and digital communication is becoming the norm.

Faces buried into smart phones, hand cramps from tablet typing and being mobile with lighter and more compact laptops and netbooks.

Why Communication is Critical

Being an entrepreneur of three businesses, communication is the most important “thing” for me.

  • Talking with people, they get to know you.
  • The more they know you, the more they trust you.
  • The more they trust you, the more likely you will be the person they go to when they have a problem to solve.

So how do we communicate with our customers when working from home or if our customer is halfway around the world?

Back in the day, you would telephone or send them something by postal mail.  Remember those days?

The New Way of Communicating

So we all know about text messages right?  but did you know that more and more applications are integrating SMS messaging into their systems?

Of course there is email, which for many is becoming more of a nuisance with spam being the most common complaint.

I’ve recently been involved with Skype… yes, I know I’m a little late to the game.

There’s Slack, which is a fantastic way of communication for people all over the world in one space and we can’t ignore Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Linked In, Periscope and blogging.

For group meetings, you have Google Hangouts, WebinarJam (which uses Google Hangouts) and Goto Webinar.  I’m sure there are more.

What Are the Pros to all of this?  As a business person, you can do all of this from the comfort of your own or office.

What Are the Cons?  You are at the mercy of technology!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been invited to online meetings and there’s been some type of technical issue.  It’s not just conferences being held by a single person just starting out or a micro business. I’m talking about conferences and meet-ups hosted by the Big Wigs.

Yes, the Big Wigs out there are just like us… at the mercy of technology!

Oh and I remember the days that the biggest faux pas at a client meeting was if you forgot to bring business cards to hand out.

How Would You Communicate Without the Internet?

With the business you have right now.  Pretend that the Internet is going on a Blackout for 72 hours.  What would you do?

That’s what the telephone is for!

Wait, Joe and I use VoIP, oh darn.  Wait, cell phone service….oh darn it’s on WiFi… ok, we can turn WiFi off so we’re good.

Plug in the phones!!!

How Would You get Something Done if a Cloud Service was Down?

Ok, first I contemplated how to word that question properly, because there are people that don’t know what a cloud service is.  So think of it as a massive computer system in the sky that links everything together.   A lot of companies run their software on this platform.

I have to laugh…recently I was in a discussion with some people and one guy was having a hissy fit because Canva servers were down and it was about to launch a Facebook Ad that was very time sensitive.  First of all, if you are planning anything time sensitive with Facebook, get your graphics done waaayyyyy ahead of time.  Plan ahead and then add a couple of more days.

His situation was amusing, because no less than 2 weeks before, I ran into the same problem.  The internet wasn’t down, but Canva servers were down.  Their Facebook page was flooded with people complaining as if it was the end of the world.

and you know how much you hate it when someone says “I told you so”?

Joe’s been on my back to stop using Canva and use Photoshop.  Well, ok, he told me so.  So now I only use Canva for very fast draft designs and formal creation in Photoshop.   I’m even going to the extreme of writing a non-techie mini-course on how to use Photoshop for everything you would do in Canva.

Most people don’t know.. Photoshop CC is cheaper than Canva!

What’s Your Favourite Way of Communicating with Your Customers?

So ignoring everything I’ve written so far, what’s your favourite way of communicating with your customers?