“Communication is the most important skill in life.” — Stephen R. Covey
Well in my opinion, communication is the most important skill in business as well –especially when it comes to the one aspect of business that I’ll speak of here, marketing.
Effective communication will not only bridge the gap between you and your target market, but it will also magnetically draw them across that bridge toward you and then captivate them.
Effective communication should never be a one-way street where only one party is doing all the speaking — then it’s not really a conversation is it? Which as marketers, we should always be looking to create and maintain conversations. Otherwise it’s more like a lecture where someone is speaking at you rather than with you.
Effective communication should ebb and flow like the tide — with a sort of naturally magnetic push and pull to balance it. Too much push or pull and you risk creating repellent effects such as overwhelm from information overload, or making you appear too pushy. Too little push or pull and you risk appearing lifeless and dull or worse yet, non-existent. So a careful balance is critical.
Effective communication should flow gracefully like a dance. As the marketer you may choose to lead and make it real easy, lucrative, and fun for those you’re communicating with to follow.
Effective communication should establish a connection between both parties by first creating a clearing for it to happen and then continuously building rapport.
And we can go on and on and on here however the point I want to get to is that communication is marketing and marketing is communication. Every time you open your mouth, you are marketing. Every time you write an email, you are marketing. Every time you stop talking and start listening to someone in your target market, you are marketing. Your clothes, your posture, your grooming, you body language all communicate a lot about you — they’re all forms of marketing. Are you starting to see both the correlation and importance here?
Now as I’ve started to allude to, communication can be broken down into 2 forms, verbal and non-verbal. Allow me to explain:
By verbal communication, I’m referring to any variation of either speaking or listening. Let’s briefly explore the two.
Whether writing an email, delivering a live speech, recording a podcast, posting on your blog, writing an advertisement, or using some other vehicle to communicate, when speaking, keep it direct and easy to understand. And most of all don’t ever be embarrassed or afraid to ask for what you want. Don’t try to impress your target market with industry jargon and fancy words. Simply speak in a tongue that will resonate positively with them.
Truly in my book the most underrated form of marketing available today. Quite simply people love the sound of their own voice and are usually pretty generous in sharing privileged information if given the proper space and prodding. Let alone if they feel that you are genuinely interested. Wow, what’s possible then?!
By non-verbal communication, I’m referring to the other, more intangible and often overlooked form of communication such as your appearance, your body language, your choice of fonts, the look and feel of your web site, even as far as the vibration and energy you convey. You may be surprised how often times your non-verbal communication speaks louder than your verbal communication. This is the kind of stuff that can boggle the mind with poor results from your marketing if you’re not paying attention to it.
Effective communication is making sure that both the verbal and non-verbal portions are in sync — mixed messages tend to cause confusion and distrust — two qualities that repel rather than attract.
And yes, whether you’re using verbal or non-verbal communication, you are marketing.
So in closing, your ability to communicate effectively will be in direct proportion to your success and happiness in all areas of your life. Now I’ve just scratched the surface and drew some correlations for you here. So if I could impart just one thought unto you, let it be to make one of your life’s endeavors to continually practice, nurture, and enhance your communication skills.
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