Did you know that marketing is all about building relationships? Many small business owners face marketing as if it is new territory which must be started from scratch for their business. I often teach new business owners that they have much more marketing experience than they are aware of. Have you ever formed a new relationship with someone? Have you maintained it over time? Than you, too, have a wealth of marketing experience!
Marketing is about getting your business out in front of your clients, right? That means that it is about forming relationships. Think about the skills that you have already built up around forming relationships. Chances are, you have been meeting people and making new friends since kindergarten, or earlier. How do you do it? First of all, you are probably nice to them. You might do something for them, like offer them a seat at your lunch table or help them with a homework problem. In adulthood, we might make friends by striking up a conversation, and finding a common ground. Do you see how these would all pertain to marketing?
Don’t let the fact that most marketing is done on a technological platform scare you into thinking that it is all based on foreign concepts. Forming relationships using technology is exactly the same as it is in person. You still must offer value, be kind, start conversations, and find common ground. You still have to get to know a person before presuming that you have a relationship.
Before selling something, you need to have a relationship with your client, and a relationship is a two way street. When using tech to form a personal relationship with your client, in order to sell them something down the road, keep in mind that you have to tell your client about yourself, as well as collect information about them. If your company excels at telling your brands story, but fails to get to know your clients, you will not build strong relationships and therefor will not be able to sell your product or service.
So how can you use tech to build healthy relationships? As I said, remember that it is a two way street. First let’s go over the direction that goes from business to client. This is the part where you are introducing yourself, and telling your story. What is the best way to accomplish this? Here is a list.
Make sure there is a face behind your business (or several). A personal story is more powerful than a general or conceptual idea. People relate to other people, not to ideas.
Share the face of your business through online social platforms such as facebook and instagram. Make sure the face behind your company is easily accessible, and that their lives are somewhat transparent. The internet gives us an expectation for transparency, and a lack there-of will make people suspicious.
Shoot videos and share them on your website, Facebook page, and as Facebook advertising. People love videos, and will trust you more once they see your face and hear your voice. This is a powerful way of introducing yourself.
In addition, let’s go over the ways that you can get to know your client.
Place calls to select clients and ask them questions.
Send out a survey to your loyal customers, and ask them who they are, what they want more of, and what they like about you and your business. Get to know them so that they know they are valued.
Reply to comments on your Facebook feed, website’s blog, or other online content. Ask questions and seek more information about the clients who are already ready to engage and interact.
With these tactics, you can develop a personal relationship through technological formats. Tech should help you form strong relationships, not hinder you! Use technology to get personal and be transparent. Relationships are a two way street.
Krishen Iyer is a marketing specialist who loves to teach and share his ideas on business, marketing, and client relations. Krishen is passionate about helping people improve their business practices and find success within their chosen careers.