Small Business Talk

The Podcast to Grow your Business Faster

What do You Mean?

Show Notes

Running a small business can be:

  • Rewarding
  • Challenging
  • Difficult/easy
  • Gives you freedom

And so much more.

Get your messaging right and making sure you are clearly understood can help to tip balance of running a small business towards rewarding and not frustration.

What do You Mean - Communication!

After cash flow, communication is one of the important factors in your business. Making sure your message is clear, concise and your customers know that you have the solution to their problem.

Did you know that 68% of customers leave and change providers because they don’t feel like you care. Not because of bad services products that don’t work, solutions aren’t right but because they don’t think you care.

Communication is so much more than just you messaging. Your message is a big part but how do you deliver your message and continue to communicate will be the make or break of your business.

No doubt you have seen the Let’s eat Grandma meme.

Depending where you put the comma will depend of the result you are looking for.

Let’s eat Grandma

Or

Let’s eat, Grandma

Is Grandma coming for dinner or will she be the dinner.

With our busy lives, texting, messaging and auto correct, you need to slow down, re read your messages and make sure what you have written can be:

  • Read
  • Understood
  • And was what you meant

Autocorrect can give you some really funny alterations that can completely change what you were trying to say.

Do Your Customers Know What You Are Doing?

You order a product online or over the phone. You pay your money and then hear nothing for weeks. You start to get worried that you have made mistake with that purchase and have been ripped off.

What is actually happening is the product was on back order so the shop owner has spent 2 weeks tracking down a better product that there are going to ship to you at the same price so that they can fulfill your order.

However, you don’t know this  and when the product finally arrives, it is better than expected but you are still left with a bad taste in your mouth because you didn’t know what was happening or the extra effort that the shop owner had gone to, to make sure you got the product you needed.

Make sure you keep your customers in the loop of what is going on and happening to their order, this can be especially valid when providing a service.

You are the duck that is paddling hard to remain calm and still on the surface, however,  if the customer doesn’t know this then they may think that you are calmly doing nothing obviously there is a time and a place. Oversharing is not required. If the wheelers are completely falling off the bus, you don’t want to give your customers all the details and undermine their confidence in your ability to deliver.

Customer journals and explaining your process can often help in showing them the steps involved for you to deliver.

Meeting Customer Expectations

Make sure your customer expectations are realistic and that you have communicated the time required.

There is nothing more frustrating to do that rush job because it was urgent only to have it then sit on the bench for 2 weeks waiting to be picked up.

Urgent is a funny work and a very stretch one in time. Make sure that you check what urgent means to your customers.

Technology has given us so many different ways to communicated now what it can led confusion.

Where was that text message?

  • Phone
  • Messenger
  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Comments
  • DM’s etc

Not only do you need to communicate how customers need to communicated with you, you also need to be aware how they like to be communicated with as well.

For faults and returns, you may have a specific ticketing process that they need to follow. Having a random text message is not always going to end up in the correct department and get the result they need.

You might have a special support email address that needs to be used for alterations and additons to existing jobs.

Then you need to think about are you communicating with your customers in the way they like to be communicated with?

  • A FIFO worker might prefer an audio message
  • An older client might require a face to face meeting
  • A customer who is some distance away prefer method could be zoom

The list goes on.

The point is it is important to communicate with your customers in a practical way that suits their purpose and preference. Of course, saying that it must also be practical, you are not going to drive 100km (60miles) to do a face to face meeting for a $20 item.

Sometimes, you need to be a bit more creative with your communication, like have a video explaining how to assemble the idea that the customer has just bought, or showing them how to apply the product.

Jargon

What is common place; common language (jargon) in your industry may not be easily understood from a customer’s point of view.

Remember not to use jargon and if you have to, make sure you explain it well.

Sometimes, explaining to your customers the simplest thing can be a real game changer and suddenly become your point of difference.

Even industry standard things are often not known outside of your industry so letting your customers know this can often elevate your business in the customer’s eyes.

Communication

Your communication needs to be

  • Clear
  • Concise
  • Credible
  • Correct
  • Coherent
  • Complete
  • Courteous

According to edexec.co.uk

And I would add consistent.

What do You Mean?

Make sure you re communicating to your customers and potential customers so they do know what you mean and are not left in the dark to let their own imaginations fill in the gaps.

Communication is the key to your business.

Links

Listen to Small Business Talk Episode 109 for the full episode.

What do you mean?

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The Podcast to Grow your Business Faster