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Follow Up Best Practice: Craft Email Messages That Build Better Rapport

Scenario: You want to build trust with your prospect
Contributor: Rachel Miller, Sandler Training

There are a couple of things you can do to support good rapport as you try to convert the email exchange to a phone conversation.

When an email comes in, and you’re ready to respond, mirror and match the way your prospect wrote the email. In other words, if the prospect sent an email in green font, match the color. If the message is written with large letters, reply in large letters; if it’s in small letters, reply in small letters – match the font size.

If the email is personalized, be sure to personalize your reply in the same way. If the email is more cryptic – for example, if they don’t even say “Hi Greg” or “Dear Greg” – then eliminate your greeting as well. Additionally, match the way the prospect closed the email. Perhaps she wrote, “Thanks,” “Sincerely,” or “All the best.” Use your email to do the same.

Mirroring and matching is a great technique for establishing bonding and rapport. People buy from people they like… and people like people like themselves. If you can establish some rapport before you even get on the phone with the prospect, you’ll be that much closer to figuring out whether there’s a problem you can solve… and that much closer to closing the sale.

Here’s another concept that works well to create rapport: Respond quickly! Remember this Sandler principle: “Time kills deals.” Because email is a time-sensitive medium, responding quickly will always be seen as a good thing by the prospect. It helps inspire the person to converse with you on the phone as they perceive you as a no-nonsense person who is “on the ball.”






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