The founder of a startup is usually responsible for many things, including talking to customers. But what happens when the thought of customer conversation fill you with dread? You’re not alone. Here are some tips for getting over your fear of talking to customers.
Understand that your customers are just like you – they’re human beings with fears and concerns
As a business owner, it’s important to remember that all of your customers are people like you. They have emotions and worries that they go through daily, just as you do – they worry about their finances, family, and health. Being aware of this fact can help foster a sense of understanding between you and your customers. When customers feel understood and appreciated, they will be more likely to remain loyal to your business for a long period of time. Showing empathy for their feelings is key in providing exceptional customer service which will benefit not just the customers but also your business bottom line.
Don’t be afraid to show your vulnerability – it will make you more relatable
It’s easy to become trapped in a culture of failure, where mistakes are seen as embarrassing and weaknesses are not embraced. In reality, being willing to show vulnerability can create a connection and trust between you and your peers or employers. Embracing failure instead of hiding it allows others to see that you are human, just like them. Not only will they relate to your experiences more easily, but they will be likely taken aback by your willingness to share the sense that everyone is capable of the same mistakes – an admission which helps break down walls in order to build stronger relationships. In today’s world, don’t be afraid to let down your guard and show those around you that not everything is flawless – because in doing so, you’re giving yourself the opportunity for greater understanding.
Be prepared for questions by doing your research ahead of time
Research plays an important role in any customer-facing venture, as it gives you insights into the customer journey and allows you to pinpoint the Customer Value that your organization can potentially offer. Your research should delve deep into more than just industry trends and standard topics of conversation, however. In addition to staying current on such matters, research should also aim to uncover your business’s Unique Selling Proposition (USP). This refers to what sets your organization apart from its competitors. How does your product or service meet a need differently than other similar products and services? You can find out by running surveys or interviews with potential customers or current clients. By doing so, you will be prepared for any questions related to Customer Value and USP that may arise at any point within the customer journey.
Practice what you’re going to say so that you sound natural and confident
Repetition is key when it comes to practice. To excel in any given context, practice helps build confidence and sets the stage for a successful outcome. As a start-up founder, there are certain conversations that need to be had with customers or at networking events is invaluable. Repetition of what you’re going to say will make sure that you sound natural and confident during the conversation and foster positive rapport. Feel free to adjust on the fly, depending on how the other person responds; this helps you find common ground and establish trust. But remember: Practice makes perfect!
Remember that your customer is the expert in their own life, and they know what’s best for them
Customer Journey Mapping is a key element of successful Customer Relationship Management. By taking time to listen intently to our customers, and understanding where they have been and what their goals are, we can develop the best solutions for their needs. This involves recognizing that each customer is an expert in their own life and will have the knowledge needed to set realistic expectations when it comes to solving a problem. Without this essential point of view, our product or service will never be able to truly meet their goals. Respect for our customer’s experience should be at the forefront of all Customer Relationship Management strategies since it is only after an understanding is established that any meaningful problem-solving can take place.
Be open to feedback, both positive and negative – it can help you improve your business
As a business owner, you should be open to feedback from both customers and other business owners. Don’t try to use it as an opportunity to sell your products or services – instead try to find out why your customer has had this experience and what you can do to improve it. By improving the problem, you will prove more invaluable than any sales pitch could. Feedback can give you valuable insight into how customers think about your business and industry as a whole; taking their opinions into account can help you stay ahead of trends, spot opportunities for improvement and innovate for success. Don’t be afraid to ask for feedback; it’s a powerful tool that is often overlooked but highly beneficial.
If you keep these six things in mind the next time you interact with a customer, you’re sure to have a successful conversation that leaves both parties feeling good about the interaction. And don’t forget, the best way to improvement is through feedback – so after your call, make sure to ask your customers how they thought it went and what could be improved. Finally, put yourself in your customer’s shoes; remember that they are the expert in their own life, and that you are there to help them solve a problem. With this mindset, you’ll be well on your way to providing amazing customer service.