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4 Steps To Being A Better Communicator
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4 Steps To Being A Better Communicator

by Curtis Brereton24th September 2015

1- Listen more, talk less

Listen, ear, hear.

Pay attention, Listen

Speaking a lot can often go hand in hand with being a terrible listener. Search marketing is an industry full of technical information and jargon so clarity is essential; be sure to listen and engage with your target audience.

Over talking can result in your audience losing what is really important about what you are saying. I have personally witnessed many presentations in which the speaker has bored the audience with information that may be correct, but holds no real substance.

Many presenters are almost afraid of the so called infamous pause. There is absolutely nothing wrong with a pause while you are speaking, the pause in your speech allows your audience to grip the topic you are covering.

The most important thing is to find a balance which rests in between over explaining the topic and supplying the target audience with an adequate amount of information. There are many ways of doing this, I personally have three rules which I follow to enable my audience to leave my presentation feeling like they’ve learnt what they needed to.

  • Learn from your client. If the client is not able to give any input you will not be able to know if they are understanding or not. So my first point is to allow the client to communicate if they are struggling to understand. Allow them to signal if you are lacking in detail, or if you are missing the point altogether.
  • Allow time for ‘Dead air’ i.e. a pause in conversation. This allows you to compose yourself to approach the next point with confidence and clarity; it also allows your client a chance to give feedback.
  • Before you move on to a new topic. Give your client enough time to digest the information and ask any questions that they may be holding back.

The whole point of meeting with a client is to make them feel welcome, make them feel as if you are putting your best efforts to meet their needs.

2- Make sure there is a mutual understanding

mutual understanding

The main question, the main reason that communications between you and your client may break down is likely to be due to a misunderstanding on both parts.

If you do not attempt to understand what your client is looking for from you then things can really go wrong. If your client is asking you for one thing, and you are lead to believe they desire something else, then it often causes big issues.

One example in which I can relate to is when my client did not believe that our SEO efforts were increasing their traffic organically. They seemed to believe that their lift in the ranks came down to their own marketing efforts.

The client couldn’t not match up the results which we were giving them, this is because those results were not in the format they wished for.

Essentially the most important factor of having a stable relationship with a client is to make sure you have a common understanding with each other.

If the client doesn’t seem to understand, maybe it is you who doesn’t quite grasp what the client is misunderstanding.

3- Create a personal relationship

conversate

Would you go into business with somebody you do not know?

I know I wouldn’t. It takes time to create a personal relationship with another person. But it can take longer than it should if you do not put the effort in.

If you do not take the time to understand and get to know the people you are going into business with, it can prove to be awkward for future business transactions, you will not be able to understand their true desires (what they really want from the business’ relationship).

I for one believe it is absolutely essential to know your client personally, especially a long term client. Showing you client interest will make them feel welcome, it will allow them to feel comfortable around you as an individual. In the long term you are almost creating a safe place to discuss any issues you and your client may encounter on the journey of joint business.

This is about more than being friends, it’s about trust, the more somebody trusts you the more smoothly business can run, being open with each other means there is nothing to hide, therefore you are able to tackle any challenges together with efficiency.

4- Clarify your client’s needs, concerns and goals.

Understanding

The most effective way of creating a mutual understanding between you and your client is to repeat and clarify what they are saying before you move onto your own point.

If you do not create that link between yourself and the client and wish your client to put more trust into you and your business, it will not happen.

Repeating the client’s needs will make them realise that you are indeed listening and taking note of what they are looking for from you.

To conclude, being an expert in your field can only take you so far. To ensure success you must make that bridge with all clients to make sure there is a mutual understanding from both parties.

1- Listen more, talk less

2- Make sure there is a mutual understanding

3- Create a personal relationship

4- Clarify your client’s needs, concerns and goals.

Not everybody can communicate well, it’s very common for many search marketers to spend the time they should be using to listen, by using it to try and ‘WOW’ their client.

Try it. Next time your client is communicating with you, pause, and think about what they are saying before you respond, that way you can fully understand the topic being discussed.

Only then should you share your views on the topic and they will value your input much more.

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About The Author
Curtis Brereton

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