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Human marketing is without a doubt the future of modern business. In a previous post I talked about the importance of human marketing in business. In today’s digital age, the average consumer is a lot more informed, tech-savvy and intelligent than ever before. Most consumers, and quite possibly your customers, absorb about five pieces of content during their decision-making process. As a company, it’s imperative to acknowledge the human element and learn how to utilize it in your business.
Human marketing stands of utmost importance for brands seeking competitive positioning in the modern digital marketplace. How do you utilize human marketing and human business tactics though? That is a question that I believe a vast majority of companies are attempting to answer. Thus far though, it appears that the brands that truly recognize the value and importance behind human business are few and far between. Many claim to practice human business, but only a few are actually following in full pursuit.
Let me explain further though, so you can hopefully acquire a good sense of the necessities behind the essentials of human marketing.
These are in no particular order. I firmly believe, however, that a vetted human marketing company follows these principles, traits, and characteristics.
#1 – Being Personable
A brand should be easily approachable. Much like in H2H interactions, there should be a sense of appeal. Each experience that your customers have with your brand should be a pleasant one. Some of the following methods should be explored further when aiming to establish a personable experience with your customers.
- Listen to your customers. And I mean, REALLY listen to their specific needs and wants.
- Utilize verbal language and feedback where possible.
- Ask your customers questions and encourage them to provide answers and respond with further questions.
- Don’t be afraid to express yourself through body language. Customers really enjoy courtesy and kind gestures.
- Be mindful of your customers needs.
These are only a few of the traits that contribute the ability of your brand to be personable.
#2 – Accountability
One of the most common issues in a service-based industry is mistakes. For instance, the marketing industry continuously struggles with accountability. A lot of advertising companies and agencies claim to have accountability when it comes to your customer base. Do they? Things are bound to go sideways once in a while with a client for whatever reason. They encounter budget issues, feel dissatisfaction with the service they receive, or simply decide to jump ship. Whatever the reason may be, client shift gears every so often.
Retention is a difficult thing to accomplish. Therefore, if you as a provider happen to screw up, no matter how unintentionally, be prepared to face the consequences. That’s right! A brand that adheres to full accountability is one that admits its mistakes willingly. The human element in business requires the ability to admit your faults. This is something that a lot of companies have always struggled with. Simply due to the fact that they afraid of losing another client.
Sure, I get it. You need to cover your overhead and expenditures. Although, as a human marketing brand you should ask yourself this question: What is most important. Your client’s satisfaction your bottom line. Of course, this is a trick question!
#3 – Conversational
Your customers are interest in what specifically you have to bring to the table. The ability to converse and explain such value in layman’s terms says a lot about your brand. It indicates that you not only have ideas and added value propositions, but also that you are able to articulate how you intend on following through. For instance, let’s assume that you are proposing a new solution for a potential client of yours. You are at the RFP stage, or perhaps putting forth a contractual agreement — an agreement that outlines the terms of your relationship.
A conversational brand who adheres to human marketing practices should be capable of explaining how it plans on following through. Your RFP or agreement should be verbally explained so that your potential client has a clear understanding of how it will all come together.
On the flip side of things, a conversational human brand is one that is social. This is true whether it is social in a virtual or traditional sense.
#4 – Relationship Building
Oh, this is an extremely big deal. You have to understand that as a so-called human brand, you are forging an alliance with your customers. I am referring to one that is one step shy of being married! This is not a joke by any means! A lot of providers miss the ball in understanding that business longevity and sustainability are largely attributed to relationship building. The types of relationships that you establish with your clients can ultimately determine the success path of your business.
Relationships are imperative to human marketing. Burning one may in fact have a heavy impact on your business. Be extremely mindful of the types of relationships you forge and how you manage them. Harmonious relationships with your customers will help you attain longevity and sustainability in your business. It will also help reinforce the human element of your brand.
#5 – Great Storytelling
One of the major differentiating factors of a human brand amongst others, is one that upholds the ability to tell great stories. Us human beings love a great story. We pour into the movie theaters in hopes of catching a fresh story. Drama, politics, news and social media are some of the avenues for hearing new stories. The Romans were notorious in their storytelling capabilities which engaged with people on a human level.
As a modern human marketing brand you should firmly understand the importance of storytelling. Not just any storytelling though. For instance, if you utilize content marketing as means of lead generation and community development then perhaps focusing on substance will yield some potential. What I mean by that is the ability to put forth a substantial amount of context in your story, that will resonate with specific buyer personas.
From a storytelling perspective, substance and context are huge in the human marketing realm. If you want to better connect with your buyer personas, you should put forth a strong initiative towards engagement tactics.
Are YOU a human marketing brand? I’d love to hear your thoughts and comments below.