We’ve been talking a lot recently about the best ways to stop losing customers, so we thought we’d change it up a bit + do a short run down for you on how to engage with your customers.
Here’s our top tips for engaging with your customers.
They’re simple but powerful + we hope you like them.
TIP #1 – LISTEN TO YOUR CUSTOMERS
Listen to your customers when they’re telling you something. It might not sound important to you at the time, but if they’re bothering to tell you, then it’s probably important to them. So listen.
For example, if you call them or contact them + they tell you outright that they can’t speak to you right now, that they’re busy or that they need to be somewhere – listen. Listen to them + respect them.
Don’t ignore them. It won’t work out well for you. By ignoring them, you give them a clear message – my agenda is more important than yours. I don’t care about you but I expect you to care about me.
If you start out not listening to them, how can they expect you to listen to them later, when you’re actually in a relationship? Start out as you wish to continue.
Oh by the way, some of the greatest inventions + product ideas have come from someone listening to their customers’ problems + creating a solution to that problem. It pays to listen.
TIP #2 – THINK ABOUT WHAT YOUR CUSTOMER WANTS TO HEAR
Think about what it is you want to tell your customer – sure – but also think about what your customer wants to hear.
So often we get wrapped up in telling our customers what we want them to know, we fail to think about what it is they want to know.
Ever had a friend or colleague who only liked talking about themselves? They might ask you the odd perfunctory question but before you know it, they’re back talking about themselves.
No one likes interactions like this, least of all your customers or potential customers. Get them talking about themselves + what matters to them + they’ll not only feel like you care, they’ll remember that you did.
TIP #3 – THINK ABOUT HOW YOU WANT YOUR CUSTOMER TO FEEL
Think about the way that you’re making your customers feel in your current communications + interactions.
If you’re making an effort to reach out to them by whatever channel, it pays to think about how you want them to feel during that interaction – be it a social media post, an email or even a phone call.
I recently had an experience where a Facebook business owner called me at the peak time of my work day + she wouldn’t let me off the phone despite repeatedly asking her to – check out our post about that here.
Had this lady actually considered our tip #3, she probably wouldn’t have come up with the following answers for how she wanted me to feel:
Not a bad emotion, if it’s a good surprise. For the first few moments, I was quite surprised + taken with her courage to take her Facebook business onto the phone. ‘Oh, that’s amazing – that’s quite a clever way to interact with your customers’, was my thought.
Now at first, this had more to do with me than her. I had inadvertently answered the call minutes before I was due in an online meeting + I probably shouldn’t have. I quickly asked her if we could speak another time, as I began to feel a little stressed about being late.
Now this was all her. Despite me telling her within the first minute of the call that I needed to go, she continued to ignore me + speak over for – for seven + a half minutes! Yes, I was well + truly late by now + completely gobsmacked that someone who was asking for my business could be so dismissive of my needs.
The result. After said 7.5 minute phone call where I repeatedly + politely requested a deferral of the conversation + she repeatedly + rudely ignore me, I was burnt.
THE WAY YOU MAKE YOUR CUSTOMERS FEEL, LEADS TO THE NEXT ACTION THEY TAKE…
Not only would I not return her call (remember, she also insulted me!), I would also go straight to Facebook + unfollow her.
Why? Because she had shown me in the first interaction just how much my needs, my opinion + my voice mattered to her – they didn’t. So how would the rest of my experience with her go, should I choose to buy her service? Hmmm.. not great huh.
So, there you go – our top three tips for engaging with your customers. Powerful, yet pretty simple when you think about it. We hope you enjoyed them!
PS – if you want to check out a little more about why you should listen to your customers, we like this HubSpot blog.