We all know and remember what happened to the Titanic. Almost 1,500 lives could have been saved with communications. Communications plays just as important a role in your careers. When CIO magazine asked business owners and CEO’s to list the top three skills their subordinates should have, 70 percent of them named communications as one of them.
For a business to succeed, effective customer communication is the cornerstone. It is the only way by which you tell prospects what they want to listen to. And, it’s the stepping stone towards giving prospects-turned-clients what they want.
Almost all of the most successful organizations promote and exercise great customer relationships. You need to be good at what you do, but having a truly successful business is based on one simple concept: trust.
With trust, you’ll have customers (or clients) for life. Without trust, you may as well pack up and go home.
Here are some tips on how you can communicate more effectively with prospects or existing clients:
1. Emotional Engagement
The first tip is to build rapport and trust with prospects more quickly by emotionally engaging them. This is specifically for networking events and people who are networking. What if you go up to an event and introduce yourself with just your name and maybe a title, what does that do?
Nothing? Nothing! Okay, they know your title but how is that interesting? Does that start a conversation? Does it generate questions? The whole point of going to networking events and meeting new people is to generate interest and have those conversations, and then be able to take those conversations to the next step after the event is over.
Instead, what you should do and what I do is, I would say, ‘I’m Sue Henry? I help business people generate leads faster and convert prospects easier by speaking to groups of their target market and by having a specific email campaign in place.’ Now, that's going to generate questions. Like, how would you convert them? What do you mean to speak to groups of your target market or small groups? Think about how you can do this.
Your first assignment is to figure out how to get that for your own business. Then go to a networking event and try it out. You’re going to be astounded at the response that you get and the questions you get.
2. Communicate with prospects without being pushy
Collecting their contact information and communicating with their permission without being sales, pitchy or pushy, is of paramount importance. Especially in the very beginning. On the back of my business cards, I actually offer a free report.
When prospects show interest in what you’re sharing, that's not the time to go into an in-depth conversation. You don't want to monopolize their time. You don't want them to monopolize yours, right?
Instead, give them something to chew on. Tell them that you’ve got the top-15 tips to speak your way to success. And, once they apply some of those tips, they would have greater results whether they're speaking to a group of their target market, whether they're speaking to a team, or whether they're leading a sales meeting. Ask if that sounds interesting?
When they say ‘yes’, hand them your card with a link on it. Invite them to go on to that link, download that report and see what they think. What’s interesting is that when people have that pertinent information on the card that they want, they tend to keep that card a little bit longer. They’ll remember you better and for a longer period of time as well compared to the other people they meet at this event.
Next, ask them for a card and write ‘free’ on their card. That way you’d remember that they’ve requested the free report, you can watch for it. If they haven't signed up for it in a couple of days, send a gentle reminder. Once they do download the report you can go back and ask what stood out the most or what part had the most impact that could help grow their business. Now, that’s just starting a conversation, and not coaching. You’re not pitching a product or service. You’re just trying to build rapport and trust in that relationship.
3. Effective email campaign
Why is it important to build a campaign that continues to build rapport and trust but then also converts prospects into new clients or customers easily?
An email campaign is not about where you take their card, put their name on a list and they get your newsletter. You send an email campaign or email sequence when they opt in for something you've got. My campaign is 14 emails delivered over two months. Each one is very specific in what it is doing and why. Each one has a call to action for what is it that I want the person to do and why. Call to action isn't always going to be where I am asking them to buy something. But I want to condition them where they know I’m going to ask them to do something so they get used to taking action with that.
In my book, I’ve got the templates for all 14 of the emails that I use. They do a great job at converting prospects into new clients for me.
4. How to get referrals
So often we think that if we do a really great job with our clients, they’re automatically going to refer others to us. But, that’s far from the truth. Why? Because their interests, their job, and their motivation isn’t to grow our business. They’re interested in their own lives and not in ours.
There are very strategic and effective paths we can follow that would intentionally help them to understand how they can deliver referrals, what we want on those referrals, and the gentle reminders and different systems we can put in place to have that happen. If you want this information, purchase my book from Amazon.
If you need help, feel free to contact me. I’d love to help.