I know we all use email to keep in contact with our customers or let them know of new ideas and special offers or for follow up, but be careful because it isn’t as powerful or successful as seeing you face to face. It can feel so much easier to email a client rather than pick up the phone or schedule a meeting, but think about how you respond to sales emails. Yes it’s easier to approach a customer but it is also easier for a customer to ignore or to say no.

The research was reported in Harvard Business Review and published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. What I think is ironic is the reason they say its so much more

Selling is a human interaction so we should use our human skills to do it, after all if we are just sending emails it wont be long before AI is taking over. There is nothing more powerful than a real person passionate about their business making a connection and putting forward a persuasive presentation. With email you cant possibly get the same connection or have a real understanding of your customer’s goals and aspirations.

Here are 3 main reasons why face-to-face selling is still the best way.

1. Body language and social interaction
There is so much going on when we interact face to face or even on the phone, we can react effectively to personality types and read each others no verbal clues, giving you the opportunity to check in and get feedback, which you cant, do by email.

2. Becoming the trusted advisor
You are much more likely to build trust and have your ideas listened to face to face, if you want to be see as a partner you need to give time to more human connection.

3. Involve your customer
If you are in front of them they are more likely to engage with you, ask questions or raise concerns and objections which means you can deal with them in real time there and then. If you are selling by email it’s too easy to disengage and ignore the message and look elsewhere f there are concerns.

In an age of automation you can stand out from the rest by including face to face meetings and phone calls in your sales process after all your customers are worth it. Also if you are a very email based company think seriously about how you can communicate more humanly with your colleagues and customers.

Difficult conversations are more emotional face to face and can make you feel more uncomfortable but that’s the point, its some much better to deal with issues head on and if you get rejected it’s a small price to pay for all the other occasions when you customer sees the value of you and not just the information you can give.