Wake up to Instant Messaging

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For some time now, I have been wondering why Instant Messaging (IM) has not been embraced by accountants as a means of interacting more with clients.

Email is great for a one-off exchange involving a message and a reply - but not great for conducting a conversation, to and fro.

The above extract from an info graphic produced by Pew Internet shows the online activities of the main generational age groups. Darker/higher squares indicate greater use. Note how IM is significantly skewed towards the 18-33 group, the "Millennials".

Younger people only use email because they are forced to, by government departments and large organisations run by their elders. They find email too slow as a means of communication. Given the choice, they choose IM every time.

If you want to start connecting with your future customers better, I suggest that you make IM a core part of your firm's operations.

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By cverrier
20th Dec 2010 09:43


...you could always speak to them on the phone?

IM is good for some things (unobtrusive communication when you're supposed to be in a meeting, or long distance comms where Skype isn't working, maybe), but why would you want to conduct a normal conversation that way?

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Adrian Pearson
By Adrian Pearson
21st Dec 2010 12:50

Take your point Charles, but

It's back to the generational thing.

My teenage sons all IM constantly (usually Facebook) on their mobile phones. If they wanted to do "voice" they have the tool in the palm of their hand. Fact is they prefer to type instead. I find it weird, but it's just the way it is.

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