I recently read a book called “Competition is Irrelevant,” by Peg Markworth, that got me thinking about the brands I love and why I am so loyal. In her book, Markworth argues that branding your business isn’t just about telling your compelling story, but that it involves walking in your customers’ shoes, understanding their pain points, and selling them something helpful.
The essence of the book is that interpersonal lesson we all started learning as tiny tots: empathy.
Empathy is a crucial example of emotional intelligence and is essential to being an effective communicator and leader. When your business incorporates empathy into its marketing plan, you’re no longer using only data to drive your sales, but you start having a conversation with your target market.
When you are willing to listen and evolve your communication strategy based on the conversations you have with customers, your fantastic product has the potential to be seen as a solution, garnering you a solid reputation in your industry.
How can you incorporate empathy into your marketing plan?
Tap into your customers emotions.
Antonio Damasio, a neuroscientist and professor at the University of Southern California, once stated that “emotions are enmeshed in the neural networks of reason.”
In other words, according to Damasio, we are emotional beings with thoughts, not thinking creatures with emotions.
What are your customers hopes and fears? What do they see and feel? What do these people need, and why do they need it?
By asking these questions, you can take the pulse of the primary motivator of humanstheir emotions.
Tapping into others’ emotions does not mean manipulating them.
Increasing awareness and ultimately cultivating a loyal following proceed from authentic interactions that build trust and create organic relationships. Nowadays, more than ever, people can tell when a brand is inauthentic, and they will call you out! ts essential to be clear and relatable with your public communications.
Create a positive social impact.
You’ve probably heard it said that with great power comes great responsibility.
Your business has a platform, and how you use that influence can be essential to business success. For example, an article in the Wall Street Journal indicates that after product or service quality, the main reason customers maintain brand loyalty is tied to the company’s sustainable and ethical business practices.
By thinking of ways your business can support a community need you can demonstrate with action that you have empathy. If you have a cause that’s meaningful to you, go ahead and act on it.
Interested in going deeper to understand how to incorporate empathy marketing into your brand’s communication and marketing strategies? Bellingham PR and Communications offers communications consultants to guide you along this journey.