Why Do People Rather Text Than Talk?

Ivana author

Ivana Vnučec

Content Writer

⏱ Reading Time: 5 minutes

It has become common that people type on their phone rather than talk. It’s become a normal occurrence on any number of social and family events, no matter the occasion. They have a habit of texting everywhere, but rarely you’ll see someone pick up the phone and actually call. Importance of social media and its monitoring is not a question anymore. Do we ask ourselves – why is that? This article hopes to provide the answer, as millennials will rather text than talk 90% of the time.

A New Way to Communicate

On the one hand, people talk less in person and turn to mobile phones. There are some statistics showing how the way of talking is changing. For example:

  • 5 billion people around the world have the ability to send and receive messages via SMS in 2018. This is a drastic increase from the 1 billion mobile subscribers in 2003.
  • The number of monthly texts sent has increased by more than 7,700% over the last decade.
  • 4. 89% of people always have their smartphone easily accessible.
  • 5. 97% of Americans, in particular, text at least once a day.
  • Texting is the first most used way of communication among Americans younger than 50.
  • 7. 82% of consumers keep SMS notifications [native, iMessage and Android] switched on

Texting vs calling

On the other hand, even when we talk about mobile phones, there are some specifications. Although voice calls were the reason why phones were made, nowadays they are not used the same. There are changes in the proportion of texting and voice calls. When it comes to texting and calling there are some more statistics.

  • US smartphone users send and receive five times more texts than they make and receive calls.
  • On average, Americans spend 26 minutes per day texting compared to 21 minutes per day calling.
  • Consumers in South Korea, India, Singapore, and the US prefer SMS over voice calls for customer service.
  • 3 out of 10 consumers would give up phone calls to use messaging.
  • Over 68% of consumers said they text more than they talk on their smartphones

Reasons Why People Text

Before delving into some of the ways you could adapt your marketing strategies to respond to the general popularity of texting, we’ll take a look at some of the reasons millennials have fallen in love with SMS. In order to make the most effective marketing strategy, you should understand your customers first. It is important to understand the logic behind the preference of texting. This way, you will be better able to target the right individuals.

🚀 Read Customer Experience Guide: How to Put your Customers First? 🚀 

Texting is the preferred form of communication among millenials

Picture 1. Texting is the preferred form of communication among millennials

Alleviating the reaction

Texting allows us to avoid real eye contact and a persons face expression. This is convenient when it comes to saying something uncomfortable. First, using smileys make it more comfortable to ask for a favor. For example:

Could you please explain to me one more time what is Paldesk? 

Darling, can you please read a new newsletter from Paldesk for me? smile

Second. you can use LOL when you are going to say something mean. It helps you to look less mean and still express your feelings. Or to make your sarcasm looks less evil. For instance:

McDonald’s is better than Burger King, LOL.

Ease of use

Millennials are all about simplicity and ease of use. This generation has grown up with more technology than all the previous ones. They are conditioned to think in terms of which technology affords the most conveniences, and the simple answer is texting.

Although they still spend time talking, they prefer to do it with parents and close friends. It’s not a mode of communication they positively associate with brand interaction. Instead, they view unsolicited business calls to be nothing more than pestering from telemarketers.

Easy to remember

In phone conversations, you can mishear some information or just miss them.  Even though you hear them correctly, you might forget them later. On the contrary, texting gives you information that doesn’t disappear. Once you have got a text, it stays there and you can check it whenever.

Another thing is that when someone gives you information over a voice call, you need to write it down. That requires a pen, paper, and extra effort. That is much more than just reading information from the message. With texting, there is no pressure to remember everything.

Texting is less stressful than talking

Picture 2. Texting requires no extra effort and is less stressful

Less stressful

Text messages are less stressful than phone calls. The latter may require the person to come up with answers on the spot — or remember specific questions he or she wanted to ask.

Also, people have become emotionally fragile.  Consequently, it is hard for them to handle “awkward silences” or “disapproving tones of voice”. By contrast, a text message gives the recipient the freedom to react and not to show his real feelings. It’s a more organized experience that involves less overall pressure.

Trumps voice mail

Millennials usually prefer not to answer phone calls from numbers they don’t recognize. That is the reason why most calls from businesses go unanswered. As a result, companies sometimes leave a voice mail. Researchers say that millennials don’t like voice messages, especially not from brands.

Voice mails take too long to retrieve and understand. They are impersonal, intrusive, and sometimes confusing. Worse, if there is information the recipient needs in the voicemail the person has to write the information down. This makes the voice mails more complicated.

With a text message, the crucial data is already written out for the recipient to see and use. So that’s why SMS trumps voice mail for most millennials.

Multitasking friendly

Typing does not require special preparation or effort. You can type messages while doing anything else. That is why people have the feeling that they are doing more things at the same time. They feel like they “multi-task” when using text messages. They also think it is more “efficient”.  

In some cases, this can be true. If you need to send or receive information sending only a message can be more efficient. For example,  you need to remind someone of a meeting. Or you text someone to remind them to pick up milk at the store.

Type “a conclusion”

Having all this in mind, texting is taking a bigger and bigger deal in everyday communications. It will grow in the future, not only in personal communication but also in advertising.

Researches say that 32% of recipients respond to SMS offers. Around 50% of US consumers who receive branded SMS texts go on to make direct purchases. This changes could turn to advertise to texting. Texting is also more effective when it is fast and in shape of live chat.

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Why Do People Rather Text Than Talk? was last modified: October 14th, 2019 by student@paldesk.com
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