Take a minute to think about the most influential people in your life right now.
They've obviously done something right to earn a spot on your list, right?
Maybe they helped you achieve something.
They've listened when no one else would.
They've inspired you to do better.
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Maybe it's your mom, your favorite athlete, or your 2nd grade teacher. Whoever they may be, they've done something that's set them apart from the hundreds, maybe even thousands of other people you've met so far.
Now take a minute to think about your business. Are you having this type of profound impact on others? How are you influencing people and improving their lives?
Aware that we often listen to those who we consider to be influential, it should come as no surprise that your business needs to have a plan for prompting action.
After all, that's how we generate traffic and leads right? Convincing people to visit our website and choose our resources?
In an effort to help, we're willing to let you in on 4 secrets that great marketers know about influencing people to help your business win over more deals.
It all starts with listening
Anyone who has ever involuntarily enrolled in an art history lecture or had to sit through a Creed song is probably well-versed in the art of pretend listening. Let's be honest, we're all guilty of it.
However, while we've reached a point where information is ceaseless, and extracting value requires actual work, it's important that as businesses we are working to improve our listening skills.
Simply put, if you want to convince people to listen to you over everyone else, you have to first start by listening to them. What do they want to hear? What are they already saying?
If you're dealing with offline communications, keep in mind that your level of interest can be conveyed both verbally and physically.
To assure the person that you're actually listening, focus on showing an emotional response to what they're saying. Don't stare blankly and don't text. Make eye contact, or at the very least, nod.
Additionally, don't be afraid to interject with questions. Asking questions helps to ensure the other person that you're not only listening, but actually interested in what they have to say. Not to mention, asking questions helps you to better understand what they're saying.
Personalization is essential
“Personally I am very fond of strawberries and cream, but I have found that for some strange reason, fish prefer worms. So when I went fishing, I didn’t think about what I wanted. I thought about what they wanted. I didn't bait the hook with strawberries and cream. Rather, I dangled a worm or grasshopper in front of the fish and said: "Wouldn't you like to have that?" Why not use the same common sense when fishing for people?” - Daniel Carnegie
The average person is constantly bombarded with marketing messages, making one-size-fits-all engagements seemingly ineffective. In order to influence someone to make a purchasing decision in your favor, a sense of personalizaiton is essential. If they like worms, and you like strawberries and cream, give them worms.
Worms aside, I recently signed up for a subscription to Ipsy, a company that sends personalized "Glam Bags" to subscribers each month. Keyword personalized.
You see, before I could subscribe, Ipsy took me through a series of questions regarding my skin tone, hair color, eye color, and beauty routine.
Rather than send the same beauty products off to everyone each month, they use my credentials to select products best suited for me. As a result, I'm more likely to continue to renew my subscription. That's influence at it's finest.
Point being, anytime you have an opportunity to tailor your message to a particular segment of your audience, seize it. Personalization promotes a sense of exclusivity, and let's be real, who doesn't love to feel important?
Your reputation matters
If you asked a room full of marketers what they considered to be their most important marketing tactic, it's likely that you'd come across a variety of responses.
Social promotions. Content production. Co-marketing opportunities.
But what about reputation building?
In order to provide people with the confidence they need to move forward with a decision in your favor, it's likely that they'll care less about your last tweet and more about their ability to trust you.
When prospective customers are shown proof that you've delivered positive results for other businesses in the past, it begins to eliminate the doubt that often accompanies any purchasing decision.
Not to mention, combing measurable proof with a compelling success story will give people something to talk about. If you can harness the power of word-of-mouth marketing, now you're cooking with fire.
Your audiences want to feel connected
People want to work with a business that understands them.
Not a business that knows their name and their job title, but rather a business that knows what keeps them up at night and how to remedy it.
This is where empathy-driven marketing efforts can and should be leveraged.
You see, prospective customers have grown so accustomed to being treated like part of the "heard", that when a marketing initiative is able to elicit an emotional response from them, it doesn't go unnoticed.
In fact, one study of 880 campaigns revealed that emotional campaigns outsell information ones by 19%. (Source: Warc)
Marketing initiatives that make us feel make it easier for us to connect. Rather than explain the features of your product, explain how the features will improve the potential customer's life, experience, or career.
Tying your brand to something that resonates with your audience, something that focuses on their specific wants and needs, is what's going to get you noticed.