information overload

Information Overload Day is this Sunday, October 20. The day is intended to remind us that too much information can have a negative impact on our happiness and productivity.

One area we tend to overdo is business communications. But they don’t have to be. Here are four ideas on how your business can deal with information overload.

#1 Idea: Avoid Making Cold Calls 

A phone call is a great way to get attention. During a call, people stop whatever they were doing and concentrate on the conversation. Marketers like to grab the attention, but cold calls irritate consumers, and since they don’t want to pause their activity for an unknown number,  they avoid answering their phones,

Bankmycell conducted a survey of millennials to understand why they avoid answering their phones. The main answers were:

  • 75% of respondents say they don’t answer because calls eat up their time
  • 64% say they won’t answer if the person calling them is a “whiny” or “needy” type of person
  • 55% of calls are avoided because they’re busy and need to get to an event

Survey respondents were people born between 1981 and 1996, but the results seem to be universal. Calls from unknown numbers can be seen as unnecessary information. If you want to celebrate Information Overload Day, cut your cold calls.

#2 Idea: Make Sure Your Emails are Not Spam

With the cold calls off the table, you can use emails and newsletters to inform consumers about your business products, services or special offers. According to Medium newsletters become popular again. Before you launch, determine the newsletters’ quality and frequency.

The worst thing for a newsletter is to be marked as spam. To avoid landing in spam inboxes check what your customers think—what kind of emails do they consider spam?

TechnologyAdvice did a survey about this and asked, “For what reasons have you marked a business’s emails as spam?” Top three answers were:

  • 8% They emailed too often
  • 4% I didn’t purposefully subscribe
  • 6% They sent irrelevant content

So, to make your newsletters welcome in people inboxes, do the exact opposite of what they say they dislike. Send your letters in moderate frequency. Contact only those who subscribed to your newsletter. And craft the content specifically for your audience.

#3 Idea: Create Your Website In A Minimalistic Manner

You make calls and send emails when you want to reach people. But quite often people want to reach you and then they check your business website. When creating a website, remember that people usually have several tabs open at the same time. There are also emails and work chats going in the background. That’s a large flow of information. So it’s often beneficial to have a minimalistic business website in order to maintain attention.

Balys Krikščiūnas, CEO of hosting provider Hostinger, suggests these steps for your business website on this Information Overload Day:

  • First, disable all the auto play content. People tend to instantly close the website that has a song or a video playing in the background
  • Check your website content. Avoid using professional slang when you can say the same thing in simpler way;
  • Work on your buying process. It shouldn’t have too many steps. People should be able to provide all the necessary information within just a few clicks.

“Another important part is the design of your website,” says Krikščiūnas. “It should be clean and minimalistic. This helps to highlight your content, products or services. And people won’t be distracted by it.”

#4 Idea: #You #Don’t #Need #All #Those #Hashtags

As for social media, there is no rulebook for dos and don’ts. But one thing that can overwhelm people—hashtag overload. Hashtags are a good tool to label your content. But too many of them make no sense.

Marketing specialist Rebecca Kowalewicz warns in her Forbes article: “Forcing hashtags into a Facebook post, or any social post, takes away from the tone of the message or conversation.” On Information Overload Day, concentrate on your business social media content quality rather than the number of hashtags.

You need to communicate with consumers to be successful. But your communication flow should be tailored to inform people, not overwhelm them. Of course, you should take pay attention to you communication strategies all year round. But Information Overload Day is a  great time to check new ideas and put them in use for your small business.

Ram Kezel is a public relations coordinator at Hostinger.

Information overload stock photo by ImageFlow/Shutterstock