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December 28, 2010 / jasonpinto

Getting To Know You

Note: This post originally appeared on interlinkONE.com

There is an excellent article in the December 2010 edition of DMNews titled “Best is yet to come … if marketers build it“.

I don’t want to steal too much thunder from the article, but one of my favorite points from it was an association between Frank Sinatra and one-to-one marketing efforts. Here was a quote about how Frank made the ladies in the audience feel: “When he was onstage, every one of them, every last one, believed … that he was singing to her and her alone.”

As marketers look for ways to improve the effectiveness of their campaigns in 2011, many will strive to improve the relevance of the content that they deliver to each individual.

Of course, simply having technology to deliver personalized materials is not enough. We need to know exactly what will be relevant to the members of our audience first. Here are three steps that we can take to learn what we need to know:

1) Listen

There is more data available about our customers and prospects than ever before. And as tools such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Foursquare, etc., continued to add features, they are simply making it easier for people to share more information about themselves. If we pay attention and listen, we can get a much better grasp as to what people want, and how to make our message appeal to them.

2) Take Notes

Listening helps us to pick up what we need to know, but we must also take steps to put that information down somewhere. The best way to do this is to make better use of whatever tool we may be using for CRM. If we are only storing contact information about our customers and prospects, our database is lacking. Marketers should absolutely use CRM solutions that allow them to store relevant notes, history items, and other personal preferences.

3) Share Personal Information about Ourselves

Social media may make it easier for people to share information about themselves, but we cannot expect the flow to only go one way. If we want people to open up with us, we must open up with them. This means that we must be willing to open up about our own interests, experiences, likes and dislikes. This can help us to develop more meaningful relationships with our customers and prospects.

So, on that note, I’ll start with the picture above. A few months ago we played a game inside the interlinkONE office. Each employee received a sheet of random details (i.e. “I have a black belt”; “I work as a ski instructor during the winter”; “I once played the bugle in my school band”). We then had to make our best guess at matching an employee to each detail. This game enabled us to all something new about each other, but it only worked because everyone had to let their guard down a bit and share information about themselves.

Here was my detail: “I am an aardvark”. I recently played in a Flag Football league, and our team name was the Aardvarks. 🙂

What’s yours?

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