Communication: Another Key to Winning Customer Loyalty

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By: JoAnna Brandi |

Posted on June 27, 2023

“We have a communications problem”

“No one communicates with me!”

“We need open communication around here!”

Do you ever hear phrases like these in business? I do ... I hear them a lot.

Effective communication involves getting a thought that's in your head out of your mouth (or hands) in such a way that recipients understand your ideas, feelings, and intentions exactly the way you want them to. And it’s doing that without blame, shame, or judgement.

That's a tall order!

The flip-side (and often more important side) is listening well enough to the person who is communicating so that you get the exact message being sent. If you've ever felt that someone serving you just wasn't hearing what you were saying, then you understand why listening is tall order #2!

Communicating clearly and listening effectively are key building blocks of loyal relationships. If you don't listen well, you can't help as much as you could. If you don't communicate well, you can't serve as well as you should.

Ask yourself ...

How well do I listen and communicate ... and what makes me think so?

Communication ... IN ACTION!

Draw yourself a little communication “map.”

  1. What kinds of information do you need to take good care of your customers?
  2. Where does that info come from?
  3. Does it need to go to someone else after you're done with it?
  4. How often do you need it?
  5. Use your map to direct communication to the right people.

Effective communication involves good follow-up, and that's becoming increasingly rare. Want to stand out? Make it your habit to follow up fast! Get back to customers (internal as well as external) with the information they ask for. If you don't have an answer for them, let them know… and keep searching until you find it.

Some people get too much information

Give your customers and your associates the opportunity to “opt out” of information they don't want. Make it easy for them to get off your e-mail and promotion lists. Let them choose what they want to receive from you ... and how often.

Today's business world operates at “10x” speed

That’s ten times faster than ever before. Everyone wants something faster, quicker, easier, and NOW! Your communications need to be clear, concise, and quick. Do whatever you can to develop these skills. Read a book. Take a class. Find a coach (e.g., a colleague, a boss, a friend) who will give you feedback on your style and help you improve.

Experts say that, normally:

  • only 7 percent of our communication is done with our words
  • 38 percent comes through our tone of voice
  • While 55 percent through our body language

So, pay special attention to your tone and gestures. Observe others and learn from them. And make sure your written communications are carefully crafted and tested before you send them.

As your business makes changes (and you know it will), be sure to keep your customers in the loop, let them know about new processes, procedures, and products that will affect them. Customers hate to be the last to find out.

“I know you believe you understand what you think I said, but I’m not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.”

Fritz Perls

Editor’s Note:

JoAnna Brandi has been speaking, writing, and consulting on customer care and helping brands create lifetime customer loyalty for over 30 years. She brings a fresh perspective to Customer Experience with practical tips to help marketers transform their CX. JoAnna is a Certified Happiness Officer and Coach. You can find her at https://returnonhappiness.com/ and https://Positiveenergizer.com. She is the author of two books on Customer Loyalty and the illustrated gift book “54 Ways to Stay Positive in a Changing, Challenging and Sometimes Negative World”.