The Power of Templates
In the previous blog post, we defined what CRM is, and how your client relationship begins. The beginning of the relationship sets the tone for everything to follow, but the follow-through is what builds the reputation for your brand. Of course, most of your relationship and reputation is built upon your in-person interactions with your clients. However, to keep your in-person interactions smooth and cordial, you must put your clients at ease by setting the mood in your communications.
Building Your Client Relationship
Bridal shops may just be the most intimate business environment there is. It may be obvious, but your brides are at a turning point in their lives. For many of them, the process of shopping for their dress is a vital wedding experience that they've been dreaming of their whole lives. This creates an expectation for an emotionally fulfilling environment where your job is to help them find the dress of their dreams. Therefore, your ability to foster that experience is what sets you apart from your competitors. Your clients are that much more likely to "say yes to the dress" if you can facilitate this special kind of environment.
However, creating this kind of environment is hard and draining. But does it have to be? Not if you make it easy for yourself by building up your relationship even when your clients aren't in your store. You can set the tone for your in-store interactions by creating thoughtful and exciting email templates, which will tip clients in your favor toward making them believe that your shop is the one.
Effective Email Templates
Email templates might just be one of the most important communications that you have to write. An effective email template can make your client feel special and thought about, even if you send the same email template to each of your clients. Here are some common rules when composing an email template:
- Your email templates should be carefully constructed. You only need to write each one once, so you should be sure to check your grammar and spelling. Consider using a tool like Grammarly to make sure that your email comes across with an appropriate tone, whether you're going for a friendly tone, a professional tone, or something else entirely.
- Email templates should make your life easier. If you find yourself frequently repeating a particular communication with your clients over and over, consider extracting that into an email template instead.
- Your email templates should have value to your clients. This could be informational value, such as a What to Expect Before Your First Appointment template, which summarizes the things that your client should know and be prepared for so that they are comfortable and confident during their first appointment. However, you should also consider creating templates with emotional value, such as congratulating the customer on their wedding.
- On the topic of emotional value, consider inviting the client with a call to action. For example, in your congratulations email template, it's a good idea to encourage your brides to attach or link some wedding photos. Interactions and engagement with these clients can encourage them to refer their friends and post positive reviews of your business online.
- Be creative! Think about ways to make your business and your personality come across in your words. Even if email templates as a concept are rote and methodical, it doesn't mean your language has to be.
Once you have created your email templates, you no longer have to even think about your communications! In fact, stay tuned for an upcoming product release, where we will allow you to automatically send your email templates out so you really don't need to think about anything.
An Aside on SMS Messages
While emails are a wonderful way to communicate with your clients, you will frequently need a more direct and real-time method of communication. Luckily, CloudBridal has full support for 2-way SMS messages so that you can have an easy line of communication with your customers, all in one place.
SMS messaging is a very flexible and easy tool, but you also need to be careful with them. The main rule is to make sure that the messages you send out are extremely relevant to the client and worthy of their attention. Most of the time, this will mean that you need your client to acknowledge or act on some information. For example, having them confirm their appointment or letting them know that their dress has arrived.
As a rule of thumb, don't send SMS messages that you wouldn't want to get yourself. For example, a request to have your client leave a review is probably better served through an email instead.
One more thing: Don't forget that in addition to email templates, CloudBridal also has SMS message templates! Don't type messages over and over, even if they are short.
Communicating with your clients is hard, but if you get anything from this post, it's that you should try to do the hard work only once whenever possible. Put all your effort into crafting exceptional and focused templates, and they will pay dividends every time you send them out to your clients.