Think of a person you love to be around, someone you have rich and satisfying conversations with. It’s likely your conversations are a two-way exchange including acknowledgement, pauses and even moments of silence. Compare that to how we market to customers.
We know that the best conversations make room for both parties. Traditional marketing conditioned us to unlearn this. We began to try reaching the masses—’doing’ marketing that simply involved broadcasting, by buying more column inches or shelf space. And so marketing forgot to leave room for the customer to be heard. We stopped inviting our customers into the conversation in meaningful ways. We treated their feedback as a distraction at best and annoyance at worst.
Thankfully that’s changing. Today our customers have a voice and it’s our job to make them part of the conversation again. Because when we listen to and engage with customers our businesses benefit in ways we might never have imagined.
Image by Geoffrey Coelho.