25 Aug How To Connect With Customers in Conversations
Building rapport with customers extends far beyond the initial interaction. Every engagement with a customer is an opportunity to strengthen the business relationship and connect with them on a personal level. Getting CRM software can help you communicate better with your customers, but they don’t replace meaningful connection built through conversations. Conveying a sense of authenticity is essential in building lasting relationships and trust with key stakeholders whether they are customers, coworkers, or vendors. Our business communication consultants recommend using these strategies when reaching out to new and existing customers.
- Find commonality – When we interact with new people, we tend to gravitate toward those who share a common interest or who have some type of connection that we share or can relate to. To do this successfully, it will require you getting to know your customers, identifying their pain points and finding ways to highlight commonalities. In day-to-day conversation, this can be a quick conversation about common vacation plans, similar sports interests, or shared business objectives and goals.
- Express understanding – To be authentic in communication situations, it is essential to convey a sense of understanding and listen to your audience. Consider their points of view, anticipate their reactions, and craft your words to appeal to the individual. Taking notes after each interaction with customers and team members is a great way to retain valuable insight from these conversations. You can then use your notes as a springboard to start a new conversation in future interactions. The quickest way to lose trust and diminish your credibility with a customer is by forgetting essential information or requests. If the customer has shared details about their business, communication preferences, or business expectations, then they are relying on you to remember them.
- Connect often – Customers want to feel like more than a transaction or a means to an end. Reaching out often to a customer to check in and see how they are doing is an easy way to convey authenticity. Many times when you reconnect with customers they may reveal a new need that your business can fulfill. By showing the customer that you value their partnership and the business relationship, you are strengthening the connection with them and establishing yourself as a trusted advisor.
- Create value – A relationship, whether personal or business, is about bringing people together to add value. Building a connection with your customers should be just as much about bringing value to their work as it is about securing a sale or getting a referral. Find ways to create value in the relationship, whether it is emailing to check in, or sending along an informative article they would enjoy.
By infusing genuine authenticity into your business communications you will be better able to connect with your customers and build lasting relationships. If you have additional ways that you use to strengthen business relationships, we would love to hear them. Share your customer connection experiences and advice with us on LinkedIn or Twitter.