Relationships are personal. Some more than others, but none-the-less quite personal. Similarly, buying decisions can be personal. It is not necessary that I will go out and purchase the cheapest and most positively reviewed product. I may spend a few more dollars to get the product from a local store, or a store where I like to visit, or an online store that accepts my PayPal account. The reasons are un-ending, the irrationality behind the reasons is constant though. But I digress, I will surely touch on this in more detail in a later post.
One of the key drivers for any buying decision made by a customer is the emotion attached to the relationship between the customer and the product (read: organization). Now, this may be an emotion attached to the salesperson who the customer talked to, or it can be the emotion (positive or negative) that he has for his friend who is recommending the product. Wherever the emotion is derived from, it is always a key factor for finalizing a purchase.
So if you want to influence a positive buying decision, you need to understand the emotions driving it. I know there are some artificial intelligence machines out there that are trying to understand human emotions, but the truth of the matter is that no-one can understand human emotions better than, well, another human. Granted we make a lot of mistakes doing that, but again, I digress…
From a customer’s perspective (who are humans the last time I checked), a customer will always be more comfortable building a relation with a person rather than an organization. So the question really is, how to build that relation?
Lets take a step back and identify one place where such relationships really exist. In your organization, look at your best salesperson. I can tell you that that person probably has the best relations with his customers in your organization. The reason is simple, as a human, I am attracted to people I like to be around. Take that one step forward, as a customer, I am attracted to organizations who understand me and my needs.
Lets put 2 and 2 together.
- Only humans can really understand humans (at least better than any other being or machine).
- Humans (read: customers) like doing business with people who understand them.
Answer: To be able to understand your customers, your organization needs to think like a human. It needs to “be human” in a sense.
So my question to you all is… Is your organization “human”?