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What are the new expectations of professional art buyers?

· Gallery Resources

Art buyers, interior architects, designers or decorators, professional buyers abound with a strong potential that it is necessary to analyze to adapt your offer to their needs. Indeed, these actors work with influential clients in the art world who invest continuously. It's up to you to create a good relationship and build loyalty with these art buyers, in order to satisfy high-value customers. Artsper helps you decipher these professional contemporary art buyers from A to Z!

Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art Georges-Pompidou, Paris, France

Between fidelity and flexibility

Customer experience and after-sales services are major factors in customer loyalty. The majority of buyers remain loyal to the galleries with which they have already worked and whose experience they remember as a good one. Satisfaction follow-up is also a determining factor if you want decorators, architects, and designers to come back to you.

The flexibility of the buyer’s available budget is also a factor to be taken into account. Indeed, it is essential to know every detail of the artistic project at the buyer's expense in order to prove its potential for budget flexibility. Since the budget is most often generous, dare to be proactive. Don't be afraid to propose works that exceed the initial budget early on in your exchanges. The buyer will not hesitate to rethink and adjust the expenses related to the project if the work represents a real favorite for him.

Remember to be persuasive while being pedagogical and concise when recommending a work. Some professional buyers are less knowledgeable than others, so it is important that they understand all the criteria that justify the value of the work.

Every detail counts

From the project’s logistics to its spatial configuration, and the specific characteristics of the work, you have to be unstoppable in order to convince the buyer that you are the person he needs to ensure the success of his client's project.

Supervision, installation fees, shipping costs... make sure you have previously identified all the fees and costs of your services so that they can be taken into account in the budget. “Hidden fees” that come up at the last minute are a terrible surprise and give the impression of amateurism. On the other hand, a frame that is too bulky or unattractive can create a disappointing effect with the customer, who will express his dissatisfaction with the buyer, thus putting an end to your relationship. Always remember to propose solutions that make the work of these buyers easier and that are equally beneficial to you. For example, refer your customers to the handlers, framers, and carriers you regularly use.

Ensure the finality of a purchase

The purchaser's customer remains the sole final decision-maker. The gallery owner and the buyer, as convincing and professional as they may be, have only limited control over the finalization of a purchase.

Good communication and total transparency are essential. Be attentive and attentive to the client's desires in order to visualize precisely the idea he has of his project, down to the smallest details. Make each step as easy as possible and anticipate his questions.

Regularly check that the proposed artwork always corresponds to the client's expectations. As the customer is not usually able to visualize the work with his own eyes, you can take the initiative to send him photos of the work in the smallest details by email. Use good quality photographs and stage them in situations where the work is always appreciated.

Do not forget to check the availability of a work before offering it to the customer and be sure to put it aside if he shows interest. Remember to organize the pre-purchase process by noting in a calendar each step and deadline to be respected, to ensure a smooth process.

Before closing a sale, the buyer must present a complete list of all the options available to his client. Be reactive if the customer in question asks for last-minute information and clarifications, it would be a shame to lose the sale in the home stretch! Being flexible can work in your favour. For example, if the customer requires a new price negotiation at the last minute, try to find a compromise that benefits both parties. Keep in mind that a satisfied customer will remember your gallery and won't hesitate to use your services again.

Finally, don't forget that an unsuccessful sale doesn't mean that the customer won't ask for you again. It happens sometimes, for many reasons, that the customer retracts at the last moment, or expresses a certain reserve at the closing of the sale. Be proactive and always offer alternatives! Keep in mind the artists or artworks they liked so that you can suggest new ones. Also, make a note of all the little details to remember for next time (why the sale didn't work, the criteria that were important to them, the possible points of tension or what they liked about your exchanges).

In conclusion?

Art buyers are like you: professionals. In the same way that you work with artists, they act as intermediaries between their end customers and art galleries. These clients are demanding, often in a hurry, and subject to the vagaries of decision-makers. But they are also reliable partners, with whom you can create a lasting relationship.

What is your goal? To become a long-term ally for them! A mission made possible thanks to impeccable service, the anticipation of their needs, and above all, the greatest possible flexibility.

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