What do you think of when you hear the word “marketing?” Do you think about advertising? Creating and promoting content? Or, are you thinking about making connections with people? Helping them. Nurturing relationships. The fact is that marketing isn’t just creating and sharing content — it’s all about building meaningful relationships with people so that they’ll want to work with us!
As content marketers, we get so absorbed in creating and promoting content that we can lose sight of the real purpose behind our efforts. Yes, yes it is all about sales… But really it’s about people — building connections and nurturing relationships.
The best marketing is not about what you say, but how you make people feel
What if you were able to make people feel good, safe, reassured, inspired? What if you made someone feel really special? What would happen then? Well I’ll tell you. They will want to buy your products, invest in what you’re doing and share with their friends on social media or even by word of mouth.
How can we do this though? Creating remarkable experiences is the key.
A memorable experience can be created in many ways — from an unexpected touchpoint to a personalized message
Memorable experiences, both positive and negative, cause an emotional response. When we have a negative experience, we tell 15 people on average. When we have an exceptionally positive one, we tell 11 (Check out these stats if you need more convincing!) I liken this to having to look at a car wreck. We can’t help it.
Not only that, but according to research by the Temkin Group, how a customer feels about an interaction with a company is one of the most powerful indicators and drivers of their loyalty. Compared to customers who have poor emotional experiences, those that feel positively are 6x more likely to purchase again and 12x more likely to recommend your company.
Additionally, the lifetime value of an emotionally-connected customer is more than twice than that of a highly-satisfied customer.
Obviously we want to create positive experiences. If we ignore this, we do ourselves (and everyone we interact with) a disservice by not making more of an effort. Especially considering that when we actually do it, we form a connection, and if we nurture that relationship, it can last a lifetime.
This can be so simple it feels effortless and the impact huge
Several months ago, I subscribed to Derek Siver’s (CD Baby founder and author of Anything You Want) private email list. Apparently, I failed to verify my email address, so he sent me an automated email asking if I was real. In it, he asked “Please reply to this email and say anything, ideally something about yourself like where you are in the world. Or feel free to ask any question. (I read and reply to all. This part isn’t automated. It’s just me.)”
I replied “Yep. Real.” and hit send. And proceeded to forget about it entirely.
Then, a couple of weeks later, he replied personally and had clearly checked out my websites via my email signature links!
How freaking remarkable is that? VERY. I was floored. And because it felt so remarkable, here I am sharing it with you.
I have not replied yet but am excited at the possibility of nurturing this new connection. Who knows where it may lead.
Connections Lead to Opportunities
It doesn’t matter how much great content you produce if you don’t make connections. Sure, you need to get your content seen by new people. But creating a personal connection is just as important as having good content.
By engaging with others, asking questions, answering questions, and helping others, you can draw more attention than if you are not doing these things. This can lead to opportunities that might not have otherwise come your way.
An amazing and unexpected thing happened just the other day. One of our customers gave us an unsolicited shout-out in the Conversion.ai Community Facebook Group. (Thanks, Brittany!)
In the thread that followed (and thanks to Kim’s prior engagement in this group), an opportunity emerged to possibly create a joint training pairing our Content Creators Planner with Jarvis, their AI marketing copywriting SaaS.
But wait, it gets even better…
Then just a few days ago, I posted a question/concern in their Facebook group having to do with their terms and conditions and the NDAs we often sign with clients.
Dave Rogenmoser himself responded quickly and took immediate action to address it, edit their T&C and make it right.
THAT is a remarkable experience.
Not only that, yes, there is more… (keep in mind that he did not know me at all.) He sent a private message to let me know that he had edited the T&C alleviating any of my concerns. We ended up chatting a bit, casual, friendly… I let him know that oh, by the way, I’m the other half of Content Creators Planner, Kim Doyal’s partner. He was aware of our planner because of Kim’s group engagement and her prior conversation with Chris. He asked some questions about how things are going with our planner and expressed interest in doing something with us, like combining Jarvis with our planner!
What an amazing and unexpected opportunity. And none of this would have happened if 1) I hadn’t reached out to ask a question and voice a concern 2) Kim’s prior engagement in the group and overall excitement and promotion of their tool hadn’t already put us on their radar and 3) Dave hadn’t responded in a caring and concerned way leading to an authentic conversation. There was no agenda. I simply expressed a concern, and he addressed it. We had a casual and friendly chat that led to this wild opportunity for us.
As a result of these experiences with Conversion.ai, I am really a fan of this company and will be promoting it wholeheartedly. I was already a fan of the tool itself, but now I have an emotional connection to the people! See how that works? They have made a fan/customer/advocate for life.
AND, Kim and I have an exciting and unexpected opportunity to collaborate with this fantastic company and team.
The bottom line here is that engaging and building relationships with people is one of the best things that you can do for your business and for yourself, personally.
Remarkable customer experiences are the new competitive advantage
(Also dog hair is the new black)
Differentiate and stand out by making your customer experience your competitive advantage.
Marketing isn’t just about creating and promoting content. It’s all about the connections with people, nurturing relationships that are genuine, and helping them solve their problems or needs. People ultimately do business with those they like and trust.
A remarkable experience is something customers will never forget — it leaves a lasting impression in their minds which leads to your brand.
If you make a concerted effort to really provide these kinds of experiences, unexpected opportunities come along when you least expect them. And, the best way to attract them is by nurturing relationships – both with your customers and prospects.
Here are some possibilities:
- Engage in meaningful conversations with your customers and prospects that lead to a shared purpose, vision or goal. Ask them questions and really listen. People feel more seen, understood and heard when we practice engaged listening. And they will love you for it.
- Share knowledge on anything from industry trends to the latest technological developments which will help them make better decisions for their business. Ask yourself: How can I support others by sharing what I know? You might be surprised by the impact you’re capable of. I do this regularly in various Facebook Groups: Content Creators, Beaver Builder and some private ones)
- Connect people with others you think they should know. Making a personal 3-way introduction can be a powerful thing. Not only do the people you connect to each other benefit, but they will always remember that you were the connector.
- At Content Creators Planner, our goal for every customer interaction is to make them happy, and help them in some way. We have even been known to hop on Zoom to help!
- Lead by example: be transparent about what you do well, openly sharing failures as lessons learned (Kim is a great example of one who does this).
This works for any sort of business. And when you create this type of environment inside your company and with the people that come through it – good things happen!
Make a difference, one interaction at a time
I’ve had the privilege of working with people from all walks of life over many years, and one thing has become clear. As content marketers, we create and promote content to help people. But if you lose sight of the real purpose behind your efforts, then it becomes about just that—content marketing. And when that happens, success can feel like a fleeting thing. So instead dedicate yourself to building connections and nurturing relationships through every aspect of what you do as a marketer (and person). This will not only lead to more meaningful experiences for both parties but also bring much-deserved satisfaction into your life too.
So why not go out there and be somebody who makes this world better? We all have something valuable to offer others. This is what content marketing should really be about — creating connections with other humans by giving them our authentic selves in every interaction so they feel seen, heard, understood and valued as individuals.
Now tell me, what are some of the most remarkable experiences that you’ve had and why did they stand out as remarkable to you?
Really, comment below and tell me – I really would like to hear from you!