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The Sound of Silence

The sound of silence can be deafening and quite possibly disastrous for your business. Are you listening to what you can't hear?

The numbers are alarming. For every one customer that complains, over 25 customers who have had an unfavorable experience with a brand don't complain. Silence, zilch, crickets, nada, nothing. And these same customers are walking out the door with their money,  heading to the competition.  Complacency, due to a lack of complaints is not a good place to hang out.  Check out these points:

No news is good news.  Think again. Regularly survey your customers, ask questions that evoke emotion. Questions with answers like "satisfied" or "expected" provide no real value.  Survey questions that require your customer to defend your brand, will tell a lot about how your customer feels about you. "Please list the top reason that almost stopped you from using us?" Dig for the negative. 

Silence is golden. Silence is costing you money and can result in lots of red ink, bleeding your business of profits. Once you find out how our customers really feel about your products or services, take action to correct the issues that arise. What good is there in finding out problems, if you are not willing to correct them? Now is not the time to get defensive or for paralysis by analysis. Your customer speaks and their words have value to your business.

If a tree falls in the forest... Your customers want to hear from your brand. When you reach out to them, they are providing free advice to you that has tremendous value to your company. The more vocal your customer is, the more value they are providing. Every level within your organization should participate including management, sales, accounting, operations. This is not just about products and services, it's about people relating to people. 

Actions speak louder than words. Don't just rely on your front line to get information. Your customers would love to hear from the company owner, president or partner. If given an opportunity to discuss your products and services in a non-threatening, open and genuine environment, your customers will tell you how they feel. You just need to ask them.

With your help, the silent customer will become an advocate for your brand, shouting great things about your company from the mountain top, echoing referrals, future sales and profits as they go.


 

 

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4 Ways To Get Noticed Starting Right Now!

Photo by Nastco/iStock / Getty Images
Photo by Nastco/iStock / Getty Images

The noise is everywhere, making it more challenging than ever for your message to be heard. With so much noise , how is it possible to get noticed, stay top of mind, or even get your brand off the starting line? The goal isn't to get noisier, that would be the answer if your were looking to be more annoying.  Business will not just find you, you have to go and get it. But how can you get more business and rise to the top, above the noise and get noticed?

It's time to get your head out of the sand and start focusing on the real reason people will do business with you. The answer is NOT about having the lowest price, the best features, the quickest delivery or even by being the best at what you do. Certainly, some of those things are nice, but they are not the universal answers to building business. Building business is about building relationships and that starts with each and every encounter you have. Start getting noticed now, regardless of whether you are developing a relationship online or face to face. Use these 4 tips to start getting noticed beginning right now:

The most rewarding things are the things you do for others. Especially when you’ve done it because you’ve wanted to, not because you’ve had to. @Mark_Sanborn
— Mark Sanborn

Catch people in the act. Getting caught in act is not about finding people doing something wrong. This time, catch them doing something right. People respond well to compliments and businesses respond the same way. If a brand you want to get noticed by does something good, let them know it. Create a "social scene" if they have done something good for their community. Tweet it out. If they have resolved a problem with a customer, let it be known how quickly the issue was brought to resolution. Too often companies are chastised for doing something wrong. Not often enough are they given praise. If a brand you are trying to build a relationship with does something right, catch them in the act, and it will get you noticed. Action item: Write a handwritten "caught in the act" letter to a company you are trying to do business with and watch how quickly they notice you.

It’s a matter of thinking how you can add value. It’s not through what you sell, it’s what else you can bring to the table. @davekerpen
— Dave Kerpen

 

Add value to your relationships. Don't make it about you.  Spend more time on what you can do for those you want to be noticed by. As an self-help, business book writer, in a field filled with hundreds of other authors I work hard to promote my book, Nice Guys Finish First. Although there are dozens of podcasts that can help promote my book, the field is still very crowded and gaining access to podcasts is not an easy feat. Instead of sending an email describing the benefits of the book to their audiences, I tell them how I will be able to help promoted their show, sharing not just my episode but other episodes as well with my social network and email list. I've been told several times I was selected as a guest because of my willingness to share information with others and that I did not come across as selling. Action item: Write a list of 3 ways that you can add value to a brand you wish to pursue. In other words, what can you offer them and in what ways can you help them to achieve their mission.

Be genuine, authentic and have peoiple in your life that will call you out and hold you accountable. @getjimpalmer
— Jim Palmer

 

Be unique. Don't be normal. Normal is a setting on your washing machine. Be unique, creative or downright entertaining. That doesn't mean that you have to break into song when you walk into your office or start tap dancing when get into the parking garage. A friend of mine, Ted Rubin is known for wearing crazy socks. Before delivering a keynote, audience members have remarked, "I wonder what socks Ted has on today?" Bowties, eye glasses or cufflinks are great ways to gently show your unique nature.  Maybe fashion isn't your thing, and that's ok. To be unique and add a bit of personality to my emails, I sign almost every email with an "XOXO." I've gotten email responses from people thanking them for the smile and the X's and O's. Action item: Make it your goal today to do something unique to get yourself noticed. If that scares you, start small, but realize your uniqueness will set you apart from the rest of the world. Be uniquely you.

If you think about the relationship first, if you are nice, and treat people well, it will enhance your relationship. @tedrubin
— Ted Rubin

 

Put yourself out there. In order to get noticed you have to take action, starting today, right now. Open your mouth, let your opinion be known, be remarkable and go big or go home. Putting yourself out there might mean volunteering for a project at work, stepping outside your comfort zone, doing something that you have never done before and taking some risk. Risk does not mean reinvention. You don't have to turn your life upside down if the risk outweighs the potential reward, but push yourself beyond the walls that you have built around yourself for so many years. Stop telling yourself NO and start telling yourself YES. Life comes at you fast, take control of the direction you are heading on the path you are on. Action item: Putting yourself in a position to be noticed is about putting one foot in front of the other and taking baby steps. Sign up for Toastmasters Club or attend a networking meeting and take control of your future today. 

Work hard to eliminate mediocre, average and an attitude of insignificance from anything you do. Each action step you take will help get you noticed. Getting noticed will help grow your existing relationships and will help build new relationships relationships as well. As an added bonus, the more you get noticed, the more confident you will become. Keep in mind, in order to see growth you will need to approach these changes with a genuine desire to improve and help others in the process and that's so much more cost effective (and helpful) than renting out Time Square.

Check out the latest episode of Nice Guys on Business....it pairs quite nicely with today's post.

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