Sometimes in business, we forget that we are interacting with people. And people have feelings, emotions, needs, and desires. We aren't robots.
You can create a simple interaction to collect customer information and automate a workflow, but if that automation doesn't benefit customers or employees in some way, they just won't do it. And receiving a PDF of a white paper or webinar doesn't necessarilly benefit a customer. Customers are smart. They know that to get that white paper PDF they need to provide their contact information to become a lead. They also know that the white paper you are offering is about your product and how you think about your solution. They don't know if it will help them, really. This is why the adoption of any technical intiaitive comes from people feeling motivated to do what you are asking. And the motivation to make any decision is not seated logic, but in emotion.
That may sound too strongly counter to how you believe decision making happens. But it's true. Decisions are often seated in emotion and people use facts to make their emotional decisions appear to be logical. (If you often wonder why some people's decisions don't sound logical, this is why.)
Further, decisions, no matter how mundane, are seated in change. Even getting up out of bed and starting your day or choosing to eat a meal is a type of change. You are going from being nice cozy warm to starting your day or hungry to satisfied. And a motivation for change is that what you are doing right now doesn't feel great; you change to feel better. You may get up to go to work and earn money to afford rent because you believe staying in bed means you are lazy; or you eat becuase you are hungry and cranky and that doesn't feel very good.
At least, that's how Dr. Srini Pillay sees it. One of his key discussion topics is change. He claims that change happens when you know that staying where you are is more painful than doing something different. This explains why alcoholics needs to hit rock bottom before they change. It's comfortable and manageable to continue a habit or addiction until you realize that it's disasterous for you personally. Unfortunately, that realization may not happen until you are close to death.
As another example, people adopt using the Internet because being offline entirely makes life more challenging than buying a smart phone and downloading and interacting with various apps and media to stay connected with other people. There are so many apps to choose from and so much media to consume. It's overwhelming.
But it's not just media options that are overwhelming. There are dozens of product brands in the world, too. People are bombarded each day with thousands of marketing messages, all targeted at grabbing their dollars. As a response, we ignore them and tune them out of our lives, becoming immune to their messaging. Well, we at least are immune to the messages that don't connect to us emotionally. We connect to the brands that resonnate most with our lives, our choices, and our perception of ourselves.
So how do you connect with your audience to take your marketing to that next level? I created a Masterclass webinar that has some suggestions for that.
By outlining how people make decisions, driven by biology (which translates into feelings and emotions), the desire for connection, and self-interest, we can use that knowledge to gain insights into what may be driving out customers to do what they do. Certainly each individual is slightly different in their personal motiviations, but there are key areas in your business where you can keep your customer engaged or watch them fade away.
We may have created the perfect textbook marketing program or product user experience, but somehow, it's not creating the results we'd like. Many times, the problem isn't the program. It's how the company is engaging with the customer - the message or tone it uses or the emotion it invokes.
In the webinar that I created in November, I show how Dr. Antonio Damasio's work connects decision making to feelings (and therefore emotions), how Dr. Viktor Frankl's work connects our innate drive to find meaning in everything, and Dr. Srini Pillay's work connects decision making to change. Oh yes, and let's throw in a little self-interest for good measure.
Does this approach really create magic? One client I worked with got over 150 email subscribers to his newsletter within 1 week of launching his email marketing program. Another colleague listened to the webinar before promoting a speaking engagement in a new region and with this knowledge, filled all available registration spots. It was one of the best results she got for an event. I presented this at a company and got them to reconsider who their customers are - not as a target market, but as people. I'm waiting to hear about the impact there.
Further, Harvard Business Review recently issued a video that summarized a study about connecting emotionally with your customers. It drastically improved one retailer's bottom line. Further, researchers originally published an article promoting this idea in 2015. This approach to solve what seems like a complex customer problem where customers are just "stuck," not purchasing and not taking action, works.
Such results come from building relationships with customers - not just talking to them about whatever topic interests them that day, posting about your company's announcements or interests, or promoting gimmicks to get an email address or make sales projections.
There is a process to use and a workbook with questions to consider each step of the way. Some questions may seem to overlap, but if you consider these items at different steps, you may have a different perception of your customers - and your business. And from this work, you can create programs and products that help customers solve the problems, do what they need to do, and get more work done.
I invite you to check out the Masterclass webinar landing page to learn more about it and how it could help you. And if you would prefer to work on this in a more structured way, I do offer a coaching package as well.