America's largest healthcare recruiting firm.

 



For over fifteen years, I have utilized Buckman Enochs Coss to hire over one hundred individuals for Sales and Sales Management positions for a variety of healthcare technology firms. Whether it’s been for Fortune 500 companies or early stage, VC backed start-ups, BEC has always done a terrific job in sourcing top-talent.

Scott Schlesner
Vice-President of Sales
Elsevier

Text Messaging: When is it Appropriate?
In every industry and product category, seasoned sales reps are usually familiar with the benefits and hazards of cold calling. Cold emailing is also an established part of the business landscape, for better or worse.  Some sales pros swear by these tactics and some avoid them, but almost every company has a clear relationship with these forms of communication and the responses they tend to elicit from clients. 

But what about cold-texting? Just a few short years ago, sending a message by text offered no guarantee that the recipient would ever see it; after all, many contacts and clients either didn’t have this capability, or had it but didn’t use it. In 2015, flip phones and landlines are no longer primary forms of contact, and almost everyone can send and receive messages by SMS text, Google Hangouts, or any one of several formats that can deliver a few short sentences to a mobile device. 

Texting is now common…but does that mean it’s on the table for sales calls and formal negotiations? Before you allow or encourage your sales teams to text their contacts on a regular basis, keep these considerations in mind. 

Texting is informal. 
Business cultures are often conservative and traditional, and they evolve slowly. A preference for texting tends to reveal a clear cultural line between millennials and baby boomers, and as such, older members of your teams may consider this method new, untested, trendy, childish, or unreliable. They may also consider a message sent by text to be informal and inappropriate for a place of business. 

Texting is personal. 
Even older clients and reps who are comfortable with texting as a form of communication may consider this format awkward for other reasons. We text our families to ask what’s for dinner, and we text our children to call them home. We text our friends to arrange parties and weekend trips. And sometimes formal business connections feel like a mismatch for the intimate language rhythms that characterize this method.  

Let the client choose. 
New communication formats should be introduced at the discretion of the client, not the sales rep. It’s a gesture of respect to let the other party choose the medium by which a conversation will take place. Launching into a dialogue by text (or by fax, or by carrier pigeon) can be irritating to a recipient who would rather use another format. Sales reps should always respect client preferences, and sometimes clients don’t share these preferences unless they’re asked. Let the client text first.

For more on how to manage the delicate aspects of modern office protocol, reach out to the sales staffing team at Buckman Enochs Coss and Associates.