There is a lot of advertising out there that cranks up the volume, telling readers or viewers that there is one thing they need, and the time to get it is now. This can draw attention if done right, but it can also drive away potential clients. If every message they hear is broadcast as loud as possible, then various company ads simply become background noise they’ll end up ignoring.
One way to fix this is to better relate to the clients a company is trying to connect to. Create marketing that treats people as people — with their own sets of interests and goals — rather than objects that provide money.
Below, members of Forbes Coaches Council talk about how they recommend businesses become more “human” in their marketing efforts, rather than creating an image of loud greed.
1. Offer Amazing Products With Superior Service
Marketing is all about creating attraction. Don’t be the company that makes it known that all it wants is dollars. Position yourself in a manner that says, “We hear you, we see you and we are here for you!” Let your target market know that you exist to serve. Offer amazing products with superior service, and people will take notice and become loyal to your brand. — Maleeka T. Hollaway, The Official Maleeka Group, LLC
2. Use Customers In Marketing Messages
Become more “human” by using real humans and pulling from customer stories. Videos, testimonials and content that comes from the humans you work with on a daily basis in your business can provide a human element to your marketing. Additionally, I have found that reflecting on each marketing message and ensuring that it has an authentic tone to it speaks to the customer rather than the object. — Brendan P. Keegan, velocityHUB
3. Shift From Selling To Problem Solving
Literally, think of your customer as one person. Not an avatar, but a friend. If your friend came to you saying, “I have this problem, can you help me? ” would you start talking about the newest gadget you purchased? No! You’d immediately start problem-solving, pulling from within to help. Marketing is the same. Show you care by offering true solutions through thoughtful language and product design. — Kelly Meerbott, You: Loud & Clear
4. Seek To Make An Authentic Connection
Look at companies and marketing efforts that are working well. They are making human-to-human emotional connections in their efforts. There is an authentic connection to the interests or well-being of customers, rather than simply looking to trick the customer into buying a product to achieve a sales goal. Make the connection and sales will come. — Larry Boyer, Success Rockets LLC
5. Know Your Customers’ Likes And Habits
The only way to do this successfully is to know your customer: their likes, habits, activities and preferences. When you truly know your customer, marketing efforts will become seamless engagement points that correlate to their daily lives. It becomes more human and less like selling, especially when you connect via their lifestyle habits. — LaKisha Greenwade, Lucki Fit LLC
6. Trust Your Customer
My favorite definition of marketing: creating an environment in which people want to buy. Marketing’s job isn’t to convince the customer to buy. It’s to create trust and rapport, and give people what they need to make a purchasing decision. Then ask for the sale, and trust the customer to make the right decision for themselves. This is truly putting the customer’s needs first. — Debra Russell, Debra Russell Coaching, LLC
7. Show Your Flaws
“To err is human.” Since businesses are made of humans, the simplest way to connect to customers is to showcase their human flaws. Don’t appear so polished all the time. That’s not realistic. Instead, strategically break your own mold and show your customers that you’re just like them. Then clearly bridge back to why or how your product or service can be so helpful to your customer. — Julia M. Winston, Brave Communication
8. Create A Small-Business Culture
In a small business, every client is precious. Teach your client-facing employees, including your marketing employees, how to put themselves in their clients’ shoes. This will allow them to understand their mindset, create meaningful engagement, and act more like a small business with precious relationships. — Sandi Leyva, Sandra L Leyva Inc.
9. ‘Recreate’ Your Clients’ Problems In Their Own Words
Talk to your current clients. Learn the language they use to describe their products. Really listen. Then, stop talking about yourself in your marketing. Instead, “re-create” your clients’ problems in their words. This lets your audience know you get their world. It’s not about you and what you do. It’s about them. — David Butlein, PhD, BLUECASE Strategic Partners
10. Keep Asking The Question ‘Why?’
Marketing efforts that touch the deeper needs and desires of potential customers inform how you can be of service. Keep asking the question “Why?” What is your ideal client seeking? How will they feel when they make this purchase? Is it a basic need? A hidden desire? Connection? Status? Keeping asking, and your copy will flow with messages that touch and connect. — Elle Ingalls, Pressure-Free Living LLC
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