The Interplay Between Communicating & Relating
The relating that occurs between human beings is a function of the communicating that is occurring between these human beings; the communicating that is occurring between human beings is function of the relating that is occurring. Which is to say that the communicating and relating are essentially in a dynamic dance with one another.
Which is primary? It occurs to me that communicating is primary: as linguistic beings we cannot help but communicate and this communicating influences/shapes relating. It is through your communicating with me that I get access to your relating to me: how you see me, how you are positioning yourself in relation to me, how you are likely to treat me, whether I can trust you or not, whether you are ‘giver’, a ‘matcher’, or a ‘taker’.
If you get this then you get the critical importance of the communicating that occurs between the people in an organisation and the customers of the organisation. How the people in your organisation communicate with customers will impact the customer experience – sometime dramatically. Let’s take a look at two examples and listen to their impact.
The Marketer’s Way Of Communicating With Customers
Take a look at this email from ILX . Pretty graphics aside, this is what the email says:
Let us pay your exam fee!
WE’VE MISSED YOU
As a previous ILX customer we just wanted to touch base with you and see how your training went and more importantly find out if your career has benefited from gaining new qualifications with us!
We have included a free Best practice map PDF for you which may help you work out what your next step could be. Download PDF >
Is there anything we can help you with in furthering your qualifications? We are here and ready to give you any assistance that you may require.
Maybe you’re considering another course with ILX?
We are constantly developing our e-learning to ensure it’s the best in the industry so you get the highest quality learning that we can provide.
We hope to hear from you soon!
Quote MISSYOUEMAIL when contacting us
If you have more than five people who wants to take part in our e-learning please contact one of our dedicated team for the best offers at email@example.com or call us on +44 (0)1270 611 600
What was my experience on opening-reading this email communication? This communication showed for me as inauthentic: false. How can ILX miss me? The people in this organisation do not know me! And if they genuinely wanted to touch base with me and find out how my training went then why did they not call me a year ago when I actually took the training? And what do they mean by “Is there anything we can help you with in furthering your qualifications?” They certainly don’t mean help as in help of the everyday human kind. What they mean is, what can we persuade you to buy from us in the guise of helping you.
So how am I left feeling about ILX? I am left feeling that ILX is just another ‘taker’ organisation looking to extract as much money as they can from me. Especially now that summer is here and people will be taking holidays rather than taking courses. So their offer to pay my exam fee is no act of generosity.
The Human Way To Communicate With Your Customers
Take a look at the following email and ask yourselves how you would be left feeling on opening-receiving this email:
We just received your order and will process it within 48 hours.
Your order # 204-0742925-4073103 shows the following items:
Love and Profit: The Art of Caring Leadership
If you have any questions or issues with this order please email us by replying to this message or email us at [email removed].
If you have any concerns at any time about this order, please email us right away with your Order ID#.
I found myself surprised and delighted. Why? Because this email speaks to me as I wish to be spoken with: it is everyday communication between two human beings. It oozes the kind of humanity that speaks to me: friendliness, warmth, caring. I find myself wanting to know more about this organisation (Slategrey Books UK) and about Melissa.
Why Have I Shared This With You?
If you are serious about showing up and competing on the basis of the Customer Experience then you need to pay attention to the quality of your communicating with your customers. Take a good look at your communications across the customer journey ask yourself if your communications are generating the kind of customer experience that builds connection. If they are not then you are likely to be better off using the services of good copywriters than spending a fortune on marketing automation systems that ultimately will enable you to deliver ‘junk’ to your customers at scale. And in the process annoy customers like me who then end up sharing their experience on social media – just like I am doing now.
Image via flickr