Wondering How to Grow Your Business? Start a Conversation
It’s easy to get caught up in your business. You’ve got a million things to do to keep everything running, do marketing, and work with the customers you do have.
With so much happening all at once, it’s easy to start getting discouraged when you’re working all the time and seeing few results.
But what if some of that marketing could be done for you? Not outsourced to a freelancer, but created by your own customers?
Even with so many purchases being done online, word of mouth is still (and probably always will be) the best marketing tactic of all.
So how can you get in on the action?
Interact with your audience and start conversations.
Conversations create engagement, vested interest, loyalty, and trust. And like we talked about before, if you don’t have trust, you’ve basically got a whole handful of nothing
Use Three Factors to Decide What Conversations to Have
The main existence for your business is not for you to become the next Mark Zuckerberg. Your main existence, my main existence, the reason any business ever is here, is to serve others. Period.
And how do you do that? Well, it’s never been better said than by Joanna Weibe.
by selling that person a better version of themselves.
This is, hands down, the best business quote I’ve ever heard. A whole roomful of lightbulbs went off when I read this for the first time. And now, before I write anything for my clients, I think, “How can I show them that my client can help make this person a better version of themselves?”
And in order to sell your customers a better version of themselves, you need to know who they are, anticipate their needs, and speak to them in a way that they understand.
Know Your Audience
No matter what you’re selling, you need to know who your customer base is. You need to know their demographic so that you can get a really good idea of who your ideal customer is.
Your demographic can be based on many things, including age, gender, culture, values, education, and location. And your ideal customer is created from putting all of these demographic qualities together.
Knowing this will help you decide what kind of conversations your customer base will enjoy having.
Anticipate their needs and what they’re interested in.
Once you know who your audience is, you know what their frustrations are.
And since you’re selling them a better version of themselves, the best conversation to start is one that shows you understand the frustration and how you can help them get rid of it.
Speak to them clearly and like a human
This one sounds easy, but can be really difficult. Instead of talking to your customers in “company voice” talk to them in a human voice. Like an actual individual.
Poopourri’s Facebook page is a great example of this. They’re based in Texas, and market mostly to ladies that are tired of finding out that their shit doesn’t actually smell like roses.
When they talk to their customers, they keep their Texas “y’all”, their playful conversation, and funny pictures.
Also, this product actually works and it’s amazing. Get it now. Especially if you’re living with someone and have one bathroom. Just sayin’.
How to Create These Conversations
There are many different spaces that you can start having these conversations. Knowing your customer base will also help you direct your efforts in the right places. For example, if you know that your customer base hangs out on Pinterest, don’t bother with trying to spark up a conversation on Twitter. Instead, use Pinterest to your advantage!
Create customized content
An audience that does a lot of reading can have great conversations that are sparked by content that you’ve created. Creating valuable content is also a great way to make sure that people keep coming back to your site.
Social media engagement
Any business that plans to stay in business is using some type of social media. You don’t just have to limit it to Facebook and Twitter though. There are many niche social media sites out there that will let you find — and talk to — your perfect customer.
Open yourself up to comments
Comments have been getting a bad rap these days; particularly on news sites. But I think they are a great way to start discussions. The one caveat — do not let people be part of the conversation if they’re anonymous. If they have something to say, they can say it under their actual name.
Anonymizing the internet lets people be psychopaths, plain and simple. An otherwise rational person can call someone they don’t agree with a bitch online under a false name with an avatar for a face, and they don’t have any consequences. No repercussions whatsoever. It’s not okay and that type of anonymity lets people act like horrid, brutish, ass-hats.
What to say in these conversations
Just yelling into the ether, “Hey, you should buy this product that is totally awesome!” isn’t going to do much. But think about the conversations you would start with your customers if they were actually in the room, or on the phone with you.
Asking questions is a perfect way to start engaging. You can ask them what they think of your product or service, or even find relatable content that’s currently in the news to get their opinion.
Dove does a great job at this. Plus, being a curly girl myself, I love this type of outreach:
Dove✔@Dove1,23610:49 AM - Nov 4, 2015
Who inspired you to embrace and #LoveYourCurls?
Tweet and tell us how they helped you build curl confidence.
408 people are talking about thisTwitter Ads info and privacy
Give an opinion
You know what’s going on in your industry, so talk about it. Have opinions and start a discussion. Patagonia lets people know what they’re thinking, and gives customers a chance to take action, too:
https://twitter.com/patagonia/status/662043416042315776/photo/1?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E662043416042315776&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fmarisamorby.com%2Farticles%2FView image on Twitter
Patagonia✔@patagonia377:07 PM - Nov 4, 2015
Help save the #LWCF with a petition http://pat.ag/8l77 from the @sierraclub.
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Single out their needs
Everyone likes it when they feel like their needs are being specifically heard. You can make your customer’s needs heard when you target their frustration and show them how you can be their solution.
Poopourri’s whole business is based around this. You’ve got a smelly problem, and they’ve got the fresh solution:
View image on Twitter
Poo~Pourri✔@PooPourri68:19 PM - Oct 21, 2015
Roses are red, violets are blue. I like you more when I can’t smell your poo.
See Poo~Pourri's other TweetsTwitter Ads info and privacy
Conversations Help Your Company Grow
If you’ve got a great product and great conversation, your business will be virtually unstoppable. Conversations engage and keep customers because they have invested in you, and know that you care about them.
And we all like a little love once in a while, right?