A successful relationship with business to business and business to consumer clients and prospects depends a great deal on how you communicate with them. As important as what you say to your customers-and those you hope will be your customers-is how you connect with them in the first place.
Some customers want to talk on the phone while others prefer you send an email. And many times, best way to communicate with a person will depend on why you are talking with that person in the first place.
What follows are some of today’s best methods for reaching out to customers and prospects and how you will know if they are working for your business:
- Phone Call: Many people prefer a phone call over any other mode of communication because they want the immediate gratification it brings. A one-to-one conversation works especially well when it comes to building relationships, when there is an urgent matter that needs to be resolved or when a more detailed conversation is required. Unsure if phone calls are the way to go? Ask yourself a few questions: Is it easy to get ahold of the person I want to reach by phone? Do they call back when I leave a message?
- Email: Email works best when a person or business uses email as its preferred method of communication. In other words, if a person or business always requests you email them with questions or provides an email address instead of a phone number, it is easy to guess they use email almost exclusively. A quick email response will tell you that email is the way to go with such clients.
- Text: Text often works well when you are trying to reach someone you are very familiar with. It is a good idea to ask a client before texting him or her. If you are looking to send out a marketing text blast, make sure you include an opt out message. If a lot of people choose to opt out, this probably isn’t the right method for your purposes.
- Chat: Many people prefer chatting via a website than any other form of communication. Those who do say that they like being able to multi-task while communicating with a company’s representative. You’ll know if people prefer chatting simply by seeing how many choose this method.
What you have to say to customers and prospects may seem like the most important aspect of business communication. The truth is, however, that how you are approaching them is equally important.