Improving How Customers And You Understand Each Other
People retain 80 percent of what they see, compared to 20 percent of what they read and only 10 percent of what they hear. When communicating, visual information is a powerful tool in helping the receiver understand and remember what you presented. It is even more critical for businesses as our opportunity to interact with customers is hard-earned. So much of a business’s resources go into building marketing, sales, and customer service opportunities. Each touchpoint is an important chance for businesses to put forth their best communication efforts.
There are several forms of visual information people use. In face-to-face communication, we share a lot of visual information about how we use body language, hand movements, and the angle of our heads. Eye contact, or the lack thereof, also plays a role in the information being delivered to the receiver. Besides this, other common forms of visual information are presented in visuals like pictures, videos, diagrams, charts, infographics, and drawings. These visuals act as content for the receiver to pull information, ideas, and emotions. They also work with other forms of communication, like verbal, kinesthetic, and text-based, to aid in understanding.
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What Is Two-Way Customer Engagement Communication
Customer engagement is the process of establishing relationships and regularly connecting with customers. With more interactions and engagement, customers become more loyal and willing to promote and purchase products from a business. Crucial to building customer engagement is to provide each consumer with a memorable experience and tend to the communications they receive.
From the marketing, sales, and customer service teams, each piece of communication that goes out to a customer should be thought of as two-way. Businesses should plan for customers to be involved and give feedback. For marketing, this could be asking the customer to reply to the email or hitting the inquire now button. For sales, it could be the customers picking up the phone to talk or book a meeting. In customer service, two-way communication is even more apparent as the customers reach out first, and the company representative responds afterwards. Here, it is imperative to communicate to the customer that the company cares, respects, and is happy to help them find resolutions to their problems. Across these customer communications, customer engagement is formed by having customers be part of the conversation and always involved.
The Step By Step Customer Engagement Model
Without customer engagement, acquiring and developing loyal customers would be impossible. Thus, businesses need to treat customer engagement as a step-by-step process with different levels and is required across various business functions. The purpose ultimately is to find out the reasons behind the customer’s decision-making process and match your communications to it in the most streamlined way.
Businesses can use the customer engagement model by following some of the steps here:
Reach – Knowing the target audience and learning about their requirements and desires are necessary for reaching them. Businesses can use various tactics to learn about the target customer’s preferences, including surveys, interviews, webinars, etc.
Purchase – The acquisition process determines why a customer might be interested in a product or service. To figure this out, try distributing written or audiovisual materials as icebreakers and follow up with one-on-one conversations.
Interact – Conversing with customers one-on-one, responding to their inquiries, or solving their problems is always required at some point. When interacting, pay attention to the feedback coming back, as communication is going back and forth.
Retain – The work is not yet finished once a customer is a customer. Afterwards, continual customer follow-up, customer service, and support keep customers engaged and the business at the top of their minds.
These communications should be planned and routine across different business functions.
Visual information is essential in these customer engagement steps as it enhances each communication occurrence. For example, think about how best to visually engage the customer when reaching out with surveys, sending out printed materials, or creating a marketing video. What kind of images, colors, and shapes within your visuals will help the information reach the customer successfully? When having one-on-one conversations with customers, have your sales or customer service representatives been trained in how they can control their body language and facial expressions? Small changes, which may not be noticeable to the customer, can unconsciously impact the customer’s thinking and feelings. Open arms, big smiles, and welcoming gestures are some visual cues for positive communication building.
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Visuals Better With Intention And Understanding
Paying attention to how customers respond to the visual information sent may be of even higher importance. As communication is a two-way model, customer feedback and responses are critical to getting the most out of your efforts. Recognizing their reactions can draw many insights into how customers think and feel. As a business engages a customer, always remember that the customer is somehow also giving the business visual and other information feedback. Observe and learn from your customers to close the loop to improve customer engagement.
Visual information, although second nature to some when communicating with customers, is one of the most powerful tools in customer engagement. With close attention, visual information can be optimized and engrained into a business’s customer engagement practices. But, like any successful business strategy, taking advantage of or improving customer engagement can only happen when you recognize the opportunity first.