You may have already conquered the important question of who your ideal clients are and that’s great. But now you need to ask yourself, what is the best way to connect with them? So stop, drop and roll – oops, no fires here – we mean, listen, relate and formulate – formulate a good plan, that is.
The best communicators are quite often the best listeners. That is because they are resistant to throw their own opinions into the mix right away. The worst communicators would rather talk over you and interrupt your train of thought, not allowing you to complete a sentence. And how wrong they usually are when they do so! I’d rather deal with a soft-spoken saleswoman who takes the time to really know what I want, rather than pitch her script from corporate. Like any romance, you want to make a meaningful connection, not be hit on like a horny teenager with roaring hormones.
(1) Be Relatable and Interesting
What is it about your favorite communicators that keep you continuing to seek out their insights? I bet it’s because you can relate to them, share similar insights, or feel that they speak your language. Let’s face it; we love ourselves and it’s okay to be a little self-indulgent in this sense. It is the greatest love of all, after all. The reflection of oneself makes our minds more open to a twist on the concepts we already have rattling around in the back of our brain. Guidance coming from a friendly voice may compel us into finally taking action. Seek the same with your audience. Where can you find that common ground?
You may like a writer’s sense of humor or the way she conveys a story. Likely, she has an innate ability to keep your attention – not something easily done in this age of quick clips and 140 character tweets. Think about her methods and model your own pitch after hers.
If you are speaking from a position of expertise, your audience will be longing for those words of wisdom – so let it be, let it be (thanks, Beatles). They know you know your shit, but it doesn’t hurt to remind them of why it is you are so damn good at what you do. Humanize and humble yourself so they can feel like they were you struggling with the same issues at some point.
(2) Share a Story of Unique Insights
Who doesn’t love a good story? Especially one that is unique. Facts and figures may fly over our heads at Lightning McQueen speed, but a good story will stick to the bones. It will also paint a word picture that better explains the concept or how to go about a process.
If you’re like us, you’ll thrust yourself into the role of the central character and look into the mind’s eye as the narrator watching us live out that story. Although you need to be a good storyteller (ie. communicator), it may take some practice to find the right tone and voice. We find that while you may not remember someone’s name three seconds after hearing it, you will remember her story – if it was a juicy one.
(3) Ask Compelling Questions
The only way to know your customers are to ask the right questions. And be sure to listen. Don’t assume their answer, but really think about what they are conveying to you. It may turn out that they give you an awesome idea that you may not have even thought of.
What makes you tick? See what I did there? Get to know your audience on a personal level, not as a person with a number waiting to be called at the deli counter.
Entrepreneurs like us have strong philosophies and an admirable drive to succeed. We love insightful questions that reach our soul, and our target audience does too. Get inside their heads.
So, what are you waiting for? Get out there! You’ve got the tools to connect with that new romance, er client. Go wine and dine them and then come back to tell us your success story.
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