How Is Digital Marketing Changing The Interiors Industry
Mpowered Podcast, Episode 29 Show Notes
Welcome to Mpowered, the podcast brought to you by Material Bank and created by ThinkLab.
In this bite-sized episode, we tackle the question, “How can I build effective client communications – digitally?” Host Kayla Aimee Terrell, director of digital marketing at Sandow Design Group, shares results from ThinkLab research showing exactly what designers want and out-of-the-inbox insights on how to reach them.
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Welcome to Mpowered the podcast brought to you by Material Bank and created by ThinkLab. Consider this your weekly dose of bite sized, actionable insights to help you succeed as a B2B rep. I'm this week's host Kayla Aimee Terrell, senior manager of digital content marketing here at ThinkLab. We'll be answering one key question each week many of them submitted by you.
Want to join in? We'll share details about how to submit your question at the end of this episode.
So our question of the week this week is: my clients want more digital communication. How do I do that effectively online?
Great question and before we get into the tools and tips, let’s level set. To start communicating online, you need to be online.
According to LinkedIn, 78% of social sellers, outsell their peers, that don't have a social media presence. And I know you might be thinking, please don't make me dance on TikTok. Don't worry. We're not. I also know it can feel intimidating to step into the online space in a new way. But in this digital first era it really means that clients are technological searchers. They are looking for you online on their own terms, time and platforms. This means that you need to be discoverable in that space, at least somewhere that they are. So first. Google yourself – because your clients probably will. What do you see? Is what's online accurately portraying who you are, what you have to offer, and how to get in contact with you?
You don't have to be on every social media platform. Find the intersection between where your customers already are and the digital space where you are comfortable. Love taking stylized photos of products? Pinterest or Instagram might be the perfect place for you to build a profile.
Love sharing industry news stories? Twitter might be a great fit for you. It really depends on what you are passionate about offering to your clients. So don't look for what's trendy. Just establish yourself on a platform that feels authentic and complementary to what you are already doing. At the very least keep an updated LinkedIn profile so people can easily find your professional avatar with a quick search.
You don't even have to post your picture if you don't want to, but it gives potential customers a comfortable way to connect in the digital space. Once you've figured out where to be, the next step is to figure out how to translate what you have to offer into virtual communication. Forbes says, essentially, "be deliberate, skilled, and steadfast with your interactions online."
And for that, we'll need to leverage some digital tools. Communication in general is making a strong shift online, both as a result of the pandemic and as a new generation, Gen Z, enters the workforce. Most of our ThinkLab research shows that Gen Z prefers digital communication. And we know that reps face to face client time has gone down to nearly half of what it used to be.
So here are a few ways you can connect with your current and potential clients using digital tools. Our ThinkLab research suggests that using video to send personalized short messages, showcasing a product is really appreciated by busy clients. And by short, we really mean short – four minutes or less, according to the A&D professionals that we polled.
It does not have to be fancy. You can even film it on your phone. Another video tool we recommend is Loom, which is a free app that adds a personal touch to virtual presentations and product modeling or to use for short, asynchronous videos. There's also always TikTok or Instagram reels if you love making more aesthetic videos. When making videos invest in a decent microphone and look for good natural lighting. Pro tip from a millennial: film perpendicular to a window for the best light.
Nowadays Zoom meetings are the norm, but they don't have to be boring. Elevate it by including interactive polls or tools like Miro where you can use mind maps to visualize your customer's problems and build solutions in real time. Then follow up with them by sending your completed mind map that has a product pallet or other recommendations attached.
All in all, don't be afraid to think outside the inbox when it comes to communicating with clients virtually. Let's be honest. Email is great, but it can also be easily buried. I don't even want to say how many unread emails I have. Slack, text and voice memos are all great digital avenues to extend your engagement in virtual space and time. Voice memos on slack are my digital communication tool of choice.
Thanks for listening and I invite you to tune in each week for more tips and tidbits to empower you as a rep. If you have a question or topic you'd like us to tackle on air, we'd love to hear from you simply direct message Material Bank on Instagram by dropping us note with your success story or question, just click on the message button to slide into our DMS.
Special thanks to Material Bank for partnering with us to provide bite-size, valuable insights for B2B reps in the interior design industry.