Take a Walk in Your Customer’s Shoes
One of the most important things you can do to increase your chances of getting your messages heard is to find your target audience. There are a ton of articles out there teaching you how to do this.
Everyone wants you to answer questions like – is your customer a man or a woman? Do they have kids, single or grandparents? What income box do they check when describing their income level?
We can ask and answer questions all day until we find what we believe is our perfect customers. And then we’re left with this really long list of answers and characteristics about this person.
Have you ever stopped to think about how all this information is going to get these people to buy your products or services?
Because it’s not just about whether your stuff is cooler than those guys down the street. That use to work in the days before we could type out a question on our phones and come up with the answer and where to buy it with a click and touch of a screen.
Now we have to dig deeper to make the sale. We have to show your target customers that your company is a problem solver to that question they just typed into the search engine.
Marketing Yourself as the Problem Solver
To put your company in this place, you need to ask yourself this basic question: What problem does my product or service solve?
If you need some help answering that question, try breaking it down even further with these:
- Does my product make my customer’s life easier?
- Will my service help them do something quicker?
- Does my stuff give them more value for less cost than the others?
I realize your responses to these questions are easier to answer for businesses that sell directly to customers but what if you sell to another business? For those of you who sell to other businesses, you’ll need to take this a step further.
To grow your B2B company, you need to understand more than just your customers. You need to understand your customer’s customer and how your business can help them make more sales.
You want your customers know that you’re not just some company they can switch out with the next one who comes along with a cheaper version of your stuff. You want them to know how your products and services can help them make their worlds flow easier.
You’re not just a vendor who needs a PO number every time you make a sale. You’re a member of their team.
Talk to your customers
Take the time to talk to your customers and learn more about their top issues and concerns.
Ask them to give you a picture of what their customer’s experience is like and what part of their sales process causes them problems. The more you learn about what keeps them up at night, the more you’ll be able to see how you can help them.
See if you can get your customer on the phone or at least, ask if you can engage them in an email conversation. When you get their attention, ask them these questions to help you get the full picture of what they’re dealing with in their daily life:
- What are your customer’s top 3 concerns?
- What part does your business play in your customer’s cycle?
- Is there something your service or product can help them do to get to their sales goals faster?
- How can your product or service help your customer sell to their customers?
And then really spend some time online doing some research about your customers.
The top 5% sales people schedule time in their day to look up a company before they set an appointment. They read, analyze and monitor what’s going with their customers before they’ve even walked in the door.
These top sales people don’t have anything more to help them with their research than you already have in your laptop or smart phone.
There’s a ton of information out in the interwebs for you to read to help you become a more effective partner to the businesses that you sell to. When your customers see how you understand how to get them more customers, there’s no longer a need for a sales pitch.
Understanding your customer’s problems and how your benefits are their solutions is the key to getting repeat business. Take the time to connect with your customers and really listen to what they have to say about their businesses.
Soon, you’ll realize that you’ll know your customer so well that you’ll start giving them what they want even before they ask for it.
PS If you’re looking for tips to help you handle your social media marketing, download your FREE copy of my 10 Social Media Time Management Strategies ebook. You’ll learn some easy to follow strategies to help you create a social media routine that works with your crazy busy world.