Posts Tagged ‘silence is golden’

Silent Marketing: How to use empathy to become the darling of your market

December 8, 2010
Your ears are better persuaders than your mouth

Want to grow your sales and profit? Listen!

Silent Marketing: How to use empathy to become the darling of your market

You want to win your prospects’ trust and business?  Show them that you empathize with their circumstance and understand their “pain” better than anyone else.  Then let the quality and value of your product or service prove that you care deeply about your market’s frustrations.

Empathy is the cornerstone of any effective marketing or business strategy.  It is about caring and turning your focus externally.  With empathy, you see your company or business from the customers’ perspective.  You think like your ideal customers and then do everything you can to become the supplier they would be thrilled to buy from.  Put simply, you have to fall in love with your customer.

Are you in love?  If not now, have you ever fallen in love?  Think about what it is like when you’re in love.   The object of your affection becomes the centre of your universe.  Everything else fades into insignificance.  You live, breathe, and dream for that one special someone.

Your relationship with your customer must be like that.  Your job is to help them engineer a better outcome from each transaction with you.   You must make a conscious decision to make their lives better off as a result of your relationship.  You can do this by demonstrating how much more than anyone else you understand, respect, and empathize with their circumstance.  Show that you feel what they feel.  Then let them see that you’d do anything and go anywhere for them.

You have to care more about your customer than you do about your business.  Crazy?  I don’t think so.  It’s common sense – think about it.  I’ve noticed that most customers who come to me because of their mediocre sales and profit levels start to prosper the moment they turn their focus externally.  Stop asking: “How can we cut costs? How can we survive? How can we do better?  How can we sell more?”  Start asking: “How can we add more value for our customers?”

To be empathetic:

1.      You must love your customers.

2.      You must care.

3.      You must ask penetrating and insightful questions.

4.      You must listen to their answers with your whole body – with care and attention.

5.      You must have a desire to learn.

6.      You must want to help and make your customers’ lives better.

So instead of focusing internally, focus externally.  Put yourself in your customers’ shoes.  Let your product or service speak volumes of your empathy.  That’s how you gain their trust and become the darling of your market.  And that, my friend, is how you become their preferred supplier and the envy of your competitors.  What do you think?  Share your view and comments with the world.

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Silent Marketing is the Wave of the Future

August 18, 2010

Introduction

You can change the world by thinking of others before you think of yourself.

I’m sure you’re familiar with traditional sales and marketing.  They’re based on the premise of the ‘gift of the gab,’ coercion, interruption, shouting, and broadcasting.  There’s lack of trust.  This is, in my opinion, passé.  Silent marketing (listening) is the wave of the future.

How did we get to the mistrust?

In the business world, sales and marketing is justifiably perceived by many as sleazy.  As a result, by the time a prospect gets to your website or starts to interact with you they’re already very weary and sceptical.  Well, can you blame them?  It’s no wonder that prospects believe no one.  They’ve experienced being conned, yelled at, interrupted, bullied, tricked, deceived, manipulated, and sold many times.  And they’re tired.

What is (and why) Silent Marketing?

Silence is golden.  Saying nothing is preferable when you’re trying to know and understand your prospects and customers.  Silent marketing is the perfect answer.  It focuses centrally on the interest of the customer.  And it is not as dumb as it might first appear, even though it is counterintuitive.  It obeys perfectly our capitalist market economy’s fundamental law.  You will only get what you want if you help others get what they want. Your first task is to ask great questions and listen silently to your target market (prospects or customers) to find out what they want.  And then offer it to them, on their terms.

Listening is very important.  When you listen, you understand.  When you understand, you can empathize.  And when you empathize, you’ll discover the real meaning of service.  Silent marketing demands empathy.  It is not about sleaze, blowing your own trumpet, or the gift of the gab. It is about listening attentively with care, understanding what the market needs and wants and giving it to them.

This is why Silent Marketers are great interviewers and listeners.  You cannot be a great marketer unless you’re a great listener.  And you cannot be a great listener until you learn to be silent.  Learn to listen – really listen.  And when you’re listening, you’re silent.  People love that.  It shows that you care and respect them. Well, don’t you?

My mother used to tell me from an early age, “Silence has the loudest voice.  You scream loudest when you’re silent.  You must be silent to touch souls.”  Sometimes saying nothing says the most, and you learn at the same time.  You don’t learn new things while you’re talking.

The Insanity of “Shouting” Marketing

One form of insanity is doing the same thing but expecting a different result.  I saw a brilliant bumper sticker recently in America, which says “Honk if you hate noise pollution.”  I love the sticker because it sums up the lunacy going on in marketing and advertising today.  Marketers and advertisers know that we’re all fed up with the marketing noise everywhere and want to avoid it.  Rather than find a solution to remove the noise altogether, many marketers are looking for ways to “out-shout” their competitors.  They want to shout the loudest.  It is madness.  You will always find someone who can shout louder.  The smart strategy is to do something totally different.  Why not do the opposite of what annoys people – i.e. shut up and listen?  I’ve only ever met one person who likes advertising and he’s an advertising agent.  Silent marketing brings sanity to business.

Let us (marketers) be silent so that we can hear the whispers of the market.  It is difficult to find your ideal customers amidst the current marketing noise.  Customers (that’s human beings, in case we’ve forgotten) prefer silence.  I love this quote from Ausonius, “He who does not know how to be silent will not know how to speak.”

Here’s my take on it: Your speech will be right on target after you’ve carefully listened attentively to everything the person has to say.  If you’ve listened well, you’ll know exactly where the person is coming from and what they really want.

Selfishness versus Market focus

Traditional marketing comes across as selfishness.  Silent marketing is market focused and puts the interests of the prospects and customers centre stage.  Talking is about meeting your needs – selfishness; listening is about meeting theirs – market focus.

People (that’s you and me) hate being sold but they love to buy.  If the heart buys, the head will follow.  But you can only engage the heart through empathy and emotional bond.  Silent marketing is your fastest route to developing strong empathy and emotional bond with your market.

What do you think?  Please share your thoughts with the world below.  I, for one, value your comments.  Thanks.