Shhhhhh… can you hear that? Are you listening?
There is a whole lot of noise and distraction around us these days – now more than ever before. How do we make sure our business is heard amongst all the noise?
The one skill all business owners need to master – listening!
When it comes to marketing your business, listening is the #1 tool we all need to be great at.
Bad advertising comes from poor listening.
Marketing is all about influencing people’s behavior and perceptions. If your ads and messaging are fake, or inauthentic then you will shut out your audience and disengage them. Your marketing efforts will fail.
If you aren’t listening to your customers, you’re creating something based on what you think they want. Which is often something far removed from what they actually want.
Once you’ve built your product or service, you need to listen again to make sure you’re crafting messaging that people will connect with.
Interpreting what you’re hearing is also a skill needed in understanding the wants/needs/desires of your customers.
Go in with an open mind when you listen to your customers – so you can hear everything, even if it isn’t something you don’t want to hear. Don’t try to misinterpret what they’re saying.
The goal is to create images and messaging that will people will see/hear amongst all the noise, like, and remember with when they’re making a purchasing decision. It needs to resonate with their hopes, desires, and fears.
6 ways to become a better listener
1. Schedule the time. Let’s face it, we’re all busy building our businesses, so there is little time to waste. But this is one thing you HAVE to schedule time for – find the time to listen to your customers before you create a new product or service, and listen again to create your messaging.
2. Listen to them, not you. It is so easy to listen to your own voice or the voices of those around you (your colleagues, coaches, friends, and family). But stop. Instead, talk with ideal customers. Find out what their pain points are. In their own words.
3. Hear the jargon. Listen to theirs, not yours! Don’t insert your own jargon into messaging, unless your ideal customer will understand it. What words are your customers using when talking about their needs and your product or service? Use those words in your messaging!
4. Dig deep with your questions. To get beyond the simple ‘yes’ or ‘no’ responses, ask more probing questions of your ideal customers. Ask open-ended questions so people will use their own words. What are the motivations that drive the behavior of your customers?
5. Listen for the descriptors. How do your ideal customers feel about the service or product, and about their needs and desires? What are the exact words they are using to express themselves? Listen for the emotions
6. Don’t judge. When you’re listening to queues and for the descriptors from your ideal clients, ignore your own bias. Remove yourself from the dialogue. This is all about your ideal customer. Not you.
Take a tone of notes and then you’ll be armed with all the words your ideal customers use when it comes to your product or service, and their wants, needs, and desires.
The next step is to create great copy on your website, on your posts on social media and anywhere that you are trying to attract customers containing these phrases and words that your ideal customer uses.
Listen. It could make or break your business!