Three Steps to Improving COVID Client Connections
Communicating with our customers has recently become more challenging. The pandemic and our responses to it have created fundamental shifts in how we do business, both now and as we move into the "new normal" post lockdown.
As business owners, we cannot afford to go quiet as we may risk losing customers. But more importantly, we miss out on opportunities to find innovative ways to stay connected and be of service to our customers.
How do we do this?
- Use your connections with your customers to better understand them and their needs.
- Use this information to pivot quickly to address these and be at the forefront of their mind to help them with their problems.
- We often talk about the importance of customer experience and service, but what exactly are the secrets behind achieving it?
Three Steps to getting COVID Client Connections right
STEP ONE: COVID Client Connection Mindset
How we think about something is fundamental in how we then perceive the experience of it. For example, can you remember a time when you weren’t looking forward to a conversation? Our body prepares for the worst, with adrenaline racing and then our minds automatically pick up and interpret information to help us reinforce our perception.
Much of this comes from assumptions we have made about ourselves and our customers. Before you connect, try to set your mind to be curious and open. This will help you to set the tone for the connection and ask for what they want, expect, or need right now.
Many people are feeling challenged by the isolation and changes to their lives. Think about how you can help them overcome this with timely updates, morale building, and trusted and real communications.
Now is the time for the highest levels of integrity and empathy, as we work closely with our clients to show how we can help them resolve their problems, and through this build better businesses.
STEP TWO: COVID Client Connection Activity
Now we have our minds in the right place – what do we do?
Your first step is to discover the needs, motivation, and reality of your clients. Replace your assumptions with knowledge and then centre this around how you can best help them fix the problems they have and meet their future aspirations.
Decide how best to adapt your business to take advantage of the opportunities. Think about what changes are necessary around how you deliver service and products to your customers.
Review your current delivery tools and see what needs to change. How can you make it easier to customers to work with you? How can you be clearer and more responsive? Based on these insights, you may need to create new tools and systems for communications and delivery.
Get started and refine your delivery models in and around your client and their experiences.
STEP THREE: COVID Client Connection Results
Often when we think about the word ‘results’ in business, we look at financials and the bottom line. But I would like to draw your attention to the important precursors to that end. These changing times challenge us to be more mindful of the processes in our business. To use our client connections to help us review, reframe, and succeed.
Here are four keys to measure success in client communications. They are:
- Have I actively listened?
- Do I understand who my client is and their current needs?
- Market awareness:
- How are my customers really feeling and thinking about their business reality now and in the next 6-12 months?
- Can I help them achieve any of these things?
- Action plan:
- Have I helped them set and work towards their goals?
- Have I communicated a clear roadmap?
- When is my next action and connection point?
- Market creation & innovation:
- From my conversations is there a common thread or opportunity?
- Can I create something new that will help my clients?
Metisan specialises in helping businesses discover, decide, design, and deliver better business outcomes through deep and focused understanding of how they can better serve their customers.