Friday, August 21, 2009

The time is 2.30 (tooth hurty!)

I’m Horrified. That’s right, Horrified with a capital H.

I just received this text (SMS) message verbatim.

Hi u are due for ur regular dental check. We are booked for 6wks.Call on.

Now don’t get me wrong. I’m all for a strategic use of a text message. I get a sensational one from my physiotherapist to remind me about appointments and we even use them in our real estate agency for rent reminders, but this text message is, in my opinion, appalling.

What’s more, there’s an extra 69 characters they could have used in this text message without spilling over into a second message and thus costing them more.

I get that there is a language that people use for text messaging and I get that abbreviations make things easier to fit in to the limited space but c’mon! This text is just crazy. I don’t want to get my teeth checked by a place that sends out reminder text messages that look like they’re from a bored 17 year old.

The sad truth is that I will end up going back to this dentist (it’s near on impossible in my area to get into another) and I won’t let them know how horrified I was by this text message. How could they get the feedback? The next time I’m waiting the 30 minutes in the surgery why not give me a little survey that says “what can we do better?” Then I’d share it with them.

Until then though, in language my dentist’s receptionist will understand if no one else: C u l8r, KD.

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By Kirsty Dunphey with 9 comments

9 comments:

I agree with you on the text language. It’s getting out of hand, and it’s annoying. You have a lot of insight and commonsense. I concur with you on most things you write, however, I feel the need to respond to your recent entry of "The time is 2.30 (tooth hurty!)".

In this instance, when you state, that “I won’t let them know how horrified I was by this text message”, unless they put out a customer survey asking for feedback. I’m perplexed, as my question to you is why don't you ask them about it? Especially when you note that you have to wait 30mins there anyway, (which also begs a question, of why can't they space their times out evenly so people don't have to wait so long).

Look forward to your response.

Regards, Yvonne

Yvonne,

Thanks for your comment.

Turns out I didn't have to wait 30 minutes, I was in and out in a flash BUT - I don't provide feedback unasked unless I know the organisation or person. That's just my personal preference.

cheers

K

Ok, fair enough I guess, with the 30 min issue. But why not, to use a quote, "be the change you wish to see in the world", rather than just talk about it to the people who aren't at fault and venting. If you stood by what you preached, then it would be more inspirational, wouldn't you think?

You write a column about what you feel and think, which is great, yet when you state to me in our comments back of "I don't provide feedback unasked unless I know the organisation or person". The question I pose to you is that, in this instance, my understanding is that you know it’s the dentist, and you know who they are, don't you?

Perhaps I have gotten this wrong, but as you have not used commas and full stops, it is hard for me to decipher what you mean.

Cheers,
Yvonne

Yvonne

It's a personal preference that I don't provide feedback of this type without being asked by the organisation , ie by way of a feedback form, questionnaire etc.

I write the newsletter to give people ideas, not to vent. This blog isn't about one dentist surgery changing a text it's about those that choose to read what I write thinking about appropriate text use in their business.

I understand your point, I just respectfully disagree. Perhaps I'll blog on why I don't provide feedback in this way at a later stage to further explain.

Appreciate your comments and thanks for expressing your opinions.

Happy reading
k

I agree - as a small business person, I used to feel compelled to let businesses know about my customer experience. Even though it is delivered in the nicest possible way, with the best intentions - I soon learned that it is rarely appreciated or implemented and even sometimes received negatively. Now I only give it if I'm asked for feedback.

Danielle

Couldn't agree more.
Thanks for taking the time to comment.

Kirsty

I read this in your weekly email and loved it! Then it happened to ME! We were doing a refinance on our home and having funds transfered. The process lasted much longer than necessary due to inept service. Were told funds would be transfered 8 AM on Friday, finally at "beer thirty" we got a text that said "Funds are in ur account, have a nice day ;)" Certainly not appropriate for a large financial transaction!

I must admit that these short form text messages to me sound unprofessional and unfriendly, sometimes hard to decipher! There are words in the english language dictionary that you can use to be as brief (and clear) as possible.

I must admit that these short form text messages to me sound unprofessional and unfriendly, sometimes hard to decipher! There are words in the english language dictionary that you can use to be as brief (and clear) as possible.

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