With all the choices your business has at its fingertips to connect with your customers, how confident to do you feel about the content you are publishing? How good is your customer engagement?
I play a lot of chess so let’s think of content as moves in a chess game. When I play with new people there are endless possibilities to play the same game. A game of chess with a very good competitor will be under 10 moves. Whereas, if the two competitors are equally matched equally it may take 20-35 moves to win. The long games are always more rewarding, exciting and engaging.
Think about every move being a point in time you engage with your customer. This means you are playing the long game of chess on a daily basis with the customers who you connect with, and who pay you the most.
Now ask yourself this question: Do you have a process in place for your team to play the long game instead of the short game?
To improve your customer engagement strategies, “Ask not how you can sell, but how you can help.”Drew Calvert
What moves do you make?
Of course every business asks, how’d you hear about us? Or, how was your experience? Or, how are you most likely to refer us to your friends? These are all typical questions every business should ask. But that is boring and does not differentiate your business from the haystack.
Let’s think about this on a different level. Let’s connect to the customer without thinking about the product or service you sell. Think about connecting with them on a personal level and ask them how their day is going and if they have any fun plans coming up. People love the attention and they love for someone to listen to them. As a business your team can provide this type of comfort to a potential buyer to convert them into a “forever ambassador” for your business.
Every move matters.
This connection you’re making is a highly valued connection. At this point it doesn’t even matter what you sell because you’re building a connection with your potential buyer. They’re going to share things on a level they would not share unless they trusted you. For example, I have saved a lot of customers from walking out of my brick and mortar shops over the years. I did this by connecting with them on a personal level before selling them anything. When one of my team members made an error it was easier to reel the customer back in and have them trust the mistake was a fluke. This focus on “chatting about life” and “asking about their problems” will build a long lasting relationship. They will come back to you to buy anything you sell in the future.
So think about your customer interactions as a chess game. Remember there are not many moves to make before you lose the game. Your goal is for those first handful of questions to be open-ended and guide them in a way they feel comfortable around you and feel like they’ve created a friend within a few minutes you had with them.
Test your system with this activity.
If you’re still not sure if you’re asking the right questions, I suggest this activity. Make two columns with one called “Questions about your product or service” and the other column “Questions about the prospect as a person”. Then think of all the questions you currently ask your customers and write them into their prospective columns. If they are equal length columns then you are engaging your customers in a very friendly way. Great work! If not, then you will know how much work is needed in training your team to talk more about the person and less about the product or service.
The businesses that can achieve this challenge can truly sell anything, even in the highest competitive markets because humans thrive on this connection. We easily forget this simple friendly connection as we evolve into “screen to screen” communication.
This is a really fun exercise to understand how much engagement you have with the customers. If you want some help brainstorming this topic I would love to help out! Shoot me a message and we’ll play out some scenarios!