This is something that never really crossed my mind in the beginning.
Getting the money coming in was far more important to me, and probably to you too?
We walk around selling to our customers, but never really bother to take the time to step back and look at how we do it
Are you connecting with your customers?
Or are you just selling to them?
I will leave it up to you to decide what you do, but just selling does not work very well. If at all.
People today need more from us. They expect more. And if they don’t get it, they don’t buy.
So what does it take to connect with customers?
Let’s take a look.
You might have heard it before on your travels around the internet reading about online marketing.
There is only one YOU.
People want to know more about you and your company.
This is probably one of the first things you have to realize when you try to change how you connect with your customers.
You are not just offering products and services to the world. YOU are offering them.
You have probably heard this saying before:
People buy from people, not companies
And in 2014, that has never been truer.
People will end up buying from you because they connect with you. Or more importantly, you connect with them.
They understand your point of view and values, and agree with them completely. They come to trust you too.
I had an an amazing chat over coffee with a local entrepreneur here in Switzerland recently.
While we were talking, so many things became clear to me about how I should be working with my clients.
But one thing really stood out.
A story he told me about his first client.
He was just starting out with his business and he met his client in a hotel foyer in the center of town.
After an hour of chatting and discussing business, they agreed to start working with each other.
As they both stood up to leave, the new client said to him
“Do you know why I decided to get in touch and do business with you”
“Of course” he said “It’s because of my skills, my knowledge and experience and…”
“No” interrupted the client “That is what I need, but not why I reached out to you. I contacted you because I believe what you believe.”
They had connected as people. They shared values and beliefs.
That is what we need to achieve.
But it does not stop there. Connecting with your new customers by sharing common values is only the first step.
You also need to be solving their problems.
Just as people only buy from people, they are also looking for solutions to their problems.
This seems like a very obvious thing to say, but let’s look at an example of something we all have in common online…
I have been selling websites for quite a well now, but had it all wrong.
Here is what I normally sell when talking about websites:
Notice how I was only talking about features. Not problems and solutions.
What if I said to you that you I could bring you more customers to your struggling business and boost your profits each month?
I can get you more customers that you could possibly handle. Wouldn’t that get your attention?
And the cornerstone of that amazing promise would be a new website. (which is actually true)
I would probably need to convince you a little bit more, but ultimately what I am selling is not a website, but more customers.
You do have a website to attract and communicate with new customers. And to connect with these customers.
You do not need to have a fast, secure, mobile ready and stunning website just to show your Mom! (“Oh that’s nice honey, but what do you sell?”)
You are solving problems, not selling features.
Take a look at your sales pages from a buyers point of view.
What problems are you solving?
Are you just selling features?
Now they have started looking at what you sell to see if it solves their problems, things start moving forward.
Suddenly you get an email, or a phone call, and a potential client wants to know if you can help them.
So you start explaining how amazing your services are, and how fantastic the results you get can be.
Before you launch into your cunningly crafted sales pitch, take a moment to listen to your potential client.
First you need to know what they need.
And sometimes, they also just want someone to listen. Someone who understands what they are going through, and need.
I find that many of my most excited customers are more or less convinced to buy from me before they contact me.
So start with listening to what they need, and when they are ready – give them a little more information on how you can solve their problems or fulfill their needs.
They are looking for a solution and they believe you can help them.
But you need to listen to exactly what they want, in order to fully connect with them.
So next time you get on a call with a potential customer, dive into their needs and problems first, before offering them anything.
It also helps you decide if you want to work with them.
Yes, it’s a win-win!
Many of my customers come to me completely out of nowhere, and I really have no idea why the choose me to solve their problems.
But once the conversation starts flowing, and we start getting to know one another often they say things which surprise me:
“You just seem to understand exactly what I need”
“You work with me, not for me”
“You understand what I am trying to achieve”
All of these kinds of comments came as a bit of a shock to me at first, but you start to understand after a while that they are a result of working with the right frame of mind.
Firstly you need to be yourself, and connect with your customers on a level that involves personal values.
Then once you have connected, you need to continue to listen and solve problems and fulfill needs rather than offer products with amazing features. (sure you need those kinds of products, but that is not what sells them)
Once you get connect with your customers, they will keep coming back to you again and again.
I am an Aussie WordPress Web Designer living in Switzerland. My goal is to make your WordPress website awesome, and get you more customers via SEO and amazing content. I am also a huge fan of the outdoors, so I am often in the mountains doing crazy stuff. I discovered blogging and online marketing while recovering from a shattered leg I got while skiing, and I have not stopped learning since! Join me in reaching for the top!