By Mark Okun

 

The way showrooms can win today and move forward is to develop the relational portion of their client interactions. It is this relational connection that is the cornerstone of every showroom’s success.

 

Yet, the efficiencies brought to showrooms are the result of adopting a variety of distance selling strategies. These methods of operation have primarily focused on transactional processes and will not be leaving. The problem to watch for is being “too” transactional in the client communication process.  

There are two defined types of sales processes we are faced with every day — one is transactional, the other relational. Distancing has created a laser-focused, digitally savvy customer who is bombarded with transactional tailored information daily.  This is why texting is an excellent tool to stand out if you follow some rules and processes. The steps to follow will work with transactional or relational clients; it’s the message you send, not the process you follow to send it.

As one example of relational texting: rather than sending an email, text them a well-constructed note. Add a link to a presentation lookbook or any professional document you would typically share with a client.

The same applies when the client needs a reminder to accomplish a task or a time-sensitive reply is required.

Tip: When you obtain permission to text the client, do not delay. Do it while they are with you. This assures the correct number has been entered, and you can ask them to add you to their contacts.

Try these five texting tips to stay connected and personalize your client relationship:

 

1. Permission

  • This is no different than asking for an email address or phone number. Ask the client if it is ok to text them during regular business hours.
  • Let them know that you will only contact them about their project or share information vital to them.

 2.  Reassurance

  • Clients do not want to be bombarded with unwanted text messages.
  • Reassure the client that the texts are limited. To be sure that you are getting client buy-in, text the client while they are in front of you.

3. Topics

  • Timing of the project
  • Share good news
  • Show support
  • Get clarity
  • Introduce ideas
  • Reinforce expert status
  • Follow-up
  • Reminders

4. Professional

  • Add your name at the beginning of the text
  • Use a business tone when writing
  • Proofread
  • Restrict emoji use
  • Do not restate texts in voicemail or email

5. Reply

  • Most text messages are read within 3 minutes
  • Texting implies essential information
  • End with a thank you and a promise to follow up
  • Be concise; don’t text when sharing a lot of information. Some texting apps limit characters to 160