We live with a constant flow of information via print, radio, TV, the internet, and between our family, friends, and colleagues. Our attention is always being joggled by another attempt to “start a conversation” about the best coffee brand, a place for dinner, the best route to the airport, or the latest political fallout.
Successful people and businesses know how to communicate. They connect with us even as we are bombarded with endless messages every day. We want to hear what they say, so we take the time to listen. We can, in our personal and working life, become effective communicators. This equips us to have valuable conversations with clients, colleagues, and our social media circles.
Without a real conversation, we make no connection
Developing skills and understanding the etiquette necessary for effective conversation is a critical part of learning every day. Learning to communicate effectively is part of our socialization. Markets, relationships, brands – these all require good conversations to survive. That we have something of value to communicate is just as important as how we communicate. We require the tools to continue the relationships and engagement of the people in the conversation. Those tools are questions. What do people want to know? How will it improve their life and yours? How can your business be helpful online?
Without a real conversation, we make no connection. Our communication becomes banter. Jibber jabber. Noise. It’s meaningless and annoying, like a banner ad we might see competing for our attention on a website that we would never, ever, click on. Conversations don’t just happen like magic or well-programmed AI. The tools we need to engage aren’t software and hardware; but strategy, empathy, and focus. Don’t follow the siren song of automation; those conversations aren’t real. They won’t build affinity. Affinity leads to loyalty; loyalty leads to sales.
This is an excerpt from the book, “The Only Online Marketing Book You Need for Your Small Business” that I wrote with Bridget Willard.
This book is intended to help small business owners get a grasp on the sometimes dizzying world of online marketing. It will fuel your interest and excitement about what digital offers your business, and how you can use the internet to succeed. Your digital presence is an extension of all the things your business does online and offline. It’s an exciting time!
foto dank @freepik