Listening is considered to be the one of the most important elements of effective communication. Developing deep relationships with your customers demands a listening ear. How much effort and resources do you put into listening to your customers, partners and your employees.
Are you listening!
Listening requires developing an understanding of the real people you’re communicating with. You need to start focusing on creating an environment that is open enough for others to speak. That is the first step. The next step is the actual listening. But the problem is, getting people to listen–really listen–is damn hard and requires lots of effort from the listener. You have to make the conscious effort to listen because you are likely not to pay attention.
Slow down and respond to customer complains
A Company that “listens” has a higher rate of success and it’s customer base–grows larger with time. When you listen to customer complains and respond to customer issues on time, they tend to stay and even talk about you to their friends and colleagues.
Be social, but listen
Create a listening strategy. One of the greatest human desires, is the desire to be heard. And everybody wants to be heard. Don’t just create another social account and start talking. Listen and respond accordingly. Social media gives you a great opportunity to truly listen and develop deep relationships with your customers. They will love your products and services if they know you are there when they begin to speak or you are ready to listen whenever they intend to speak.
Social media monitoring is about listening
You can better manage your online social accounts, your followers and network if you pay close attention to the details. When you are interested in people or your followers, they know. When you ignore them and keep shouting about how good your product is, they will eventually stop listening.
Customers always have something to say, it’s your duty to find ways to get feedback from them. Monitor, observe, and respond based on what you learn on social media. Engage with your users, customers or clients. Customers are more likely to express concerns about customer service or overall impression about your product on social sites. Monitor and respond or better still make contact and solve their concerns immediately.
Employees want to be heard!
Your employees are the engine of growth, treat them with respect, value their opinions and listen to them. Your workforce can easily loose motivation if they feel their concerns are not being addresses. And that can affect productivity. Make time for employee complains and address them as soon as possible. Ask questions for clarification or to obtain further information where necessary.
How to actually listen!
Reach out! Don’t just render service or sell products, reach out to your customers and ask for feedback. You could start with surveys to gather feedback about their impressions of your product, what you are doing right and especially what you are doing wrong. Ask for feedback on how things can be improved.
You can also use observations to gather customer impressions about your service or products. You can offer great customer experience on your website by using software to study how users interact with your site or application.
Your company should be accessible via contact forms, social accounts, helplines, support forums, emails or even online chats. Make it very easy for customers to reach you and they will complain to you directly.
Practicing effective listening is one best ways your business can positively influence your employees and attract and retain loyal customers.