Hello agents! It is December and the end of the year is near! Today we bring you a special post about the importance of using every channel of communication that is available to you! We will outline all of the possible vehicles for contact with merchants that you can make use of to gain new partners!

The Communication Channels

There are three different major ways of communicating with a merchant: phone, text, and email. Each method has its own advantages and disadvantages. Each method is also better suited for certain situations over others. 

Phone

Speaking with a merchant through a phone call allows them to hear your voice. However, there is more to it than just your voice. They can hear your inflection, your volume, and your mood. The way you can emphasize one topic over another is significantly different in a phone call than in a text or email. You can make it clear verbally. Phone calls make it very clear what your intent is behind your words, while emails and texts can be left up to interpretation. If you are confident in your relationship, nervous, happy, or angry about how events are turning out can also be made apparent. It becomes important to control your voice and the emotions that you project in this instance. Finally, speaking with a merchant over the phone provides a sense of urgency, where what you have to say is too important to take the time to type it out. It needs to be communicated as soon as possible. This means that phone calls are best used to communicate important information in a clear and particular manner, to make sure that the merchant understands everything properly.

Text

Texting is the happy middle ground between a phone call and an email. Text messages are typically shorter than both and are used to relay small bits of information at a time, maybe to answer quick and simple questions, or to check up on a client. Like phone calls, they create a sense of urgency. However, texting has its own Achilles heel, where it can be difficult to properly relay a message’s meaning. Without the inflection that a voice can provide, you are limited in your message’s format. Perhaps you may use capitalization to provide a particular part with increased significance, although it may be perceived as yelling at your recipient. Instead, text messages are best for those quick questions or replies that leave little room for another individual’s interpretation.

Emails

Emails are best for long-form conversations where in-depth explanations are required and with the potential need for media such as images, files, or videos. Emails create a paper trail that allows members of the conversation to refer back to previous statements and files. Where emails fall short compared to the other two options is in the field of urgency. Emails are almost never read immediately and are reserved for when an individual as more time on their hands to properly read and respond to them. However, similar to text messages, emails also lack the implications that can be provided with a voice, allowing the recipient to infer what they like from your message. Emails are best used for communicating with groups or when files or other media is needed to discuss a topic.

That is our break down for how best to use the three methods of communicating with merchants. The one topic we did not cover was the most important one: face to face communication. What all three of the above methods lack is the silent body language that you can provide by speaking with someone in person, one on one. However, no one can be in multiple places at once, and when an in-person meeting is not possible, one of the above options will do just fine. 

If you have any questions regarding the best way to communicate within these channels, speak with your sales director for tips and advice on the best way to speak with merchants. Also, do not forget to contact the partner support department if you have any questions regarding FlashBanc’s products or services!