One of my biggest bugbears is the overuse of emails to replace a telephone conversation. Drives me mad! Whilst email/text has enhanced our ability to communicate efficiently and quickly, online habits can undermine our efforts to communicate effectively. Some might say that this proves my age (don’t ask) but for me it’s about human relationships and science…yes, science!
The Power of Voice
Human beings evolved as listeners, not readers. Neural responses are triggered through conversation, waking up parts of our brain that would not otherwise become engaged through written words. Just 7% of a message is derived by words, 38% from intonation and 55% is body language/facial expression. Emails can be really limiting from this perspective and so much is missed. Without a doubt, we communicate more effectively when we speak in real time conversation.
Furthermore, human relationships are built on trust and authenticity, which can only be experienced through two- way communication. A conversation allows for exploration and encourages discussion. We all thrive through this interaction. In comparison, relying on emails can be tedious, has a tendency to make us insular and restricts our creativity.
Conversation is king
Whilst I totally understand that there are times when email communication is the most effective route to action, there are so many occasions when a telephone conversation would be more productive.
Ideally, we want to forge relationships with clients where we become an extension of their team. It’s about three fundamental elements of PR; creating seamless campaigns that connect, strengthening relationships and reacting quickly. In my mind, this can only happen through conversation.