How Empathy Will Grow Your Sales and Marketing Pipeline

Are you using empathy within your marketing ?

Why?

Mainly because marketing isn’t something a person do to people; it’s something you do along with people.

You might be wondering: the reason why am I saying this particular?

The problem along with modern sales and marketing

I see along with marketing (and sales) this: we get clinical plus treat our customers because objects to convert instead of people who need help.

Our thinking can get off track in thinking about, “How do I get what I wish? ” (revenue, leads, opportunities, etc . )

Recently i met with a group of sales and marketing influencers and we discussed trends and the projects.

We shared what trend will be most affecting the work we’re doing (and of course Covid and the Delta variant spread came up).

As I listened, I realized that there’s a greater need for consumer empathy.

Why? Because as marketers we have more marketing channels, more content, and more technology than in the past. But , it’s become harder to connect and build trust with customers.

Let me explain.

Why do you need to build client empathy?

Today’s crazy-busy customers are wary of sales pitches, cold email messages, and hype-filled messages. The end result? They tune them out.

So within our rush to obtain leads, generate opportunities, and move the particular sales needle, it’s easy to forget that we need to tackle our customers’ emotional needs (fears, hopes, wants, and aspirations).

In addition , neuroscientist and USC teacher Antonio Damasio made the groundbreaking discovery to which he or she responded, “we are not considering machines that feel, we are feeling machines that think. ”

Damasio concluded from his findings that when emotions are impaired, the next decision-making. *

What does this mean?

We need to go beyond rational-logic-based sales plus marketing to understand how our own customers feel.

How do we gauge customer feelings?

We can do this by looking into their encounter.

This photo is of an optometrist's "phoropter." The Phoropter is one of the tools used by optometrists to measure the determine the eyeglass prescription of the patient. In this instance it is being used to represent "looking into your customers experience."
Look into your customer experience – markempa

The gap between customers plus us

Therefore , we want to market and sell THE solutions.

The customers aren’t saying, “We need your solutions. ” Instead, they’re saying, “We need to solve our problem. ” So , what happens if you focused on helping all of them do just that?

I’ve learned you can’t solution “how can I help” unless you know precisely what your customers want.

According to the CMO Council, “ Only 20% of marketers may predict the next best actions for their customers . ”

Additionally , Forrester Consulting uncovered , “ sixty-five percent of marketers struggle to employ emotional marketing as they turn to automation to improve customer engagement. ”

To understand, you need sympathy which, according to Miriam-Webster, “is the ability to share someone else’s feeling. ” We need to stroll in their shoes to see points from their perspective.

4 two-toned red icons with text underneath each of them on a beige background. The first icon is a silhouette with a thought bubble and a lightbulb within it (text underneath reads: "Thinking" ). The second icon is an excited emoji face with the below-text reading: "Feeling." The third icon is a speech bubble with the below-text stating: "Saying." The forth icon is a checkmark to resemble a to-do checklist with the below-text reading "Doing." All of these icons with text sum up the 4 factors to consider in understanding customer experience.
Customer Experience Factors to consider – markempa

What exactly is empathy-based marketing?

Empathetic Marketing is about codifying our intuition in order to walk in our customer’s shoes to understand their experience (i. e., how they’re considering and feeling about their business). Your goal is to connect to how your customer is certainly thinking and feeling. Using this method, we can better help all of them get what they want (and boost conversion).

To do this, you need to move away from business-centric to customer-focused thinking . And you need to speak to your customer’s motivations and from their perspective.

So , where do you begin?

Empathy-based marketing is founded on the following ideas:

  • The best marketing and selling is helping.
  • Empathize with your customer’s feelings and their problems by going into their world to understand.
  • Think like your clients when they set out to solve a buying problem and discover each step they may take to help them on the journey.
  • Look for ways you can help your clients make their lives better.
  • Provide your customers what they want by understanding exactly what motivates them.
  • Help your clients recognize and solve problems.
  • Give customers useful content , hero tales , and expertise in order to them gain clarity
  • Empower your employees, especially those who directly contact customers like sales development reps , with the resources, training, and tools to help them

Examples of empathetic B2B companies

The team at Slack practices empathy in their marketing and considers it to be a a part of their core values.

In this interview , Slack CEO Stewart Butterfield stated, “It’s very hard to design something for somebody if you have no empathy. ”

Additionally , IBM is gearing up to end up being the world’s largest design firm. As part of their boot camp rancho cucamonga , employees learn how to use empathy to connect better along with colleagues and clients. They’re learning how to tap into their customers’ and colleagues’ feelings plus need to come up with better solutions.

“The need for empathy towards the purchaser is huge. It’s a differentiator…” -Doug Brown, former CMO, IBM Systems

Since 2015, I’ve studied the most profitable customer-centric and empathetic companies and marketers to discover what is helping them connect with clients.

Here are 7 ways you can apply empathy for your marketing and sales.

Peach-colored background with two words on it: "Emotion" and "Motivate" are written in different shades of blue. "Emotion" is written above "Motivate" with a red arrow in between them pointing down. The arrow points from "Emotion" to "Motivate" to exemplify that a person's "emotions" lead to their "motivations."
Emotions turn out to be motivations – markempa

1 . Put your customers first

Instead of aiming to sound appealing to people, want to consider them. Understand your customer’s motivation (what they want) and make sure it’s some thing you can deliver.

So much of what we notice today are product-centric states aimed at impressing the prospect. The main word of emotion and motivate is the same.

Buyers base most of their actions on emotions and then backfill with logic. That’s why it’s crucial to get beyond the product and speak to the results and the emotions the buyer seeks.

Read more about client empathy and how to solve purchasing problems .

Picture of a quote. Light orange icon of a vintage telephone with spiral cord set on a beige background. The quote is overlaid on top of the background that reads: "Most people don't listen with the intent to understand – they listen with the intent to reply." Under the quote is the authors' name "Brian Carroll" and his company name "markempa."
Brian Carroll, CEO markempa

2 . Get into the world of your customer plus listen and observe to comprehend

A lot of people don’t listen with the intentions of understand – they listen with the intent to reply.

Listen with the third ear, which means you want to be familiar with implied assumptions and motivations behind what a person says. That’s empathetic listening. And’s it’s a deeper degree than active listening.

Empathetic understanding is not really the product of survey data. Too many marketers rely on study data or focus organizations to tell them how customer’s think and feel, but that’s not enough.

You need to get out of the building plus observe the world of your customer. It’s shocking how little of this happens.

Some of the ways marketers may build customer empathy:

  • Get out during a call with your sales team and fulfill customers face to face
  • Please pick up the phone or even listen to calls your within sales or sales development reps have with customers (it will be eye-opening)
  • Survey customers on your own email list to validate what you’ve learned intuitively from listening/observing
  • Use empathy maps

It is critical to know what customers want and what inspires them to think about their experience. Once you do this, you can use your applied empathy to consciously and intuitively understand and see the world from their perspective.

It helps you without effort interpret the context and understand the pressures facing your customer.

The main element to understanding another person can be empathetic listening – looking to understand everything (including the nonverbal signals) the other person can be communicating.

What’s emotions are motivating them? You listen for feeling, for meaning, for behavior, and for other signals.

This photo is a cartoon of two business professionals chatting. The woman (with black hair and olive skin) is shown engaged in the conversation and listening while her male colleague (with black hair and tan skin) speaks. This photo was chosen to emphasize the point in the article to "stop pushing, and start conversing." This photo is set on a grey and beige background and the two people are drawn inside of one red chat bubble each and facing each other.
Concentrate on developing conversations, not promotions – Social media vector created by stories – https://www.freepik.com/

several. Stop pushing, start talking

Focus on developing conversations, not strategies.

Don’t make a mistake on the side of pushing your own agenda rather than extending a good invitation to talk and speak. To the customer, it feels like “somebody wants something from me” rather than “maybe they can help me get what I want. ” Do this invite, listen, converse and recommend/help.

You need to demonstrate that you’re interested in their world and their motivations as a fellow human. Use empathy roadmaps and personas to understand your customer and how to better connect with them in conversations.

If you’d like more help on this subject, feel free to check out my empathy map checklist where I’ll walk you through this more thoroughly ( download it here ).

This image shows a lifelike cartoon situations. One person between two other people is being assisted up some steps that resemble bar graph bars to insinuate that this is in a professional environment. Plants surround them.
The best selling feels like helping – People vector created by pch. vector – www.freepik.com

4. The best advertising selling feels like helping (because it is)

Our marketing and lead nurturing are anchored on this idea. Since customers, we can feel when someone’s trying to push us to do something.

We know when we’re being treated as objects in order to convert. Also, we understand when someone sincerely cares. They’re not trying to press their agenda, and they’re genuinely trying to help us.

Ask this as your approach your marketing:

Is it how we’d like to be treated?

Is this how we’d like a friend or loved one to be treated?

For more, read 4 Steps to walking the buying path with your clients .

This image has 4 icons on a beige background with thin vertical lines separating each one. There are 2 speech bubbles and 2 thought-bubbles. This picture was chosen because it reminds me of social media shares, text conversations, and considering others' thoughts and needs regarding your content.
The content they want (and want to share with others) – markempa

5. Give helpful content they want (and wish to share with others)

This content organically comes forth from the first four points of placing the customer first, understanding them, conversing with them, and helping them. Yet so much of today’s content does not do that.

Much of the content I see lacks that empathetic context, plus content without empathy is simply noise. And it’s turn out to be very noisy in the B2B sales and marketing.

Cleveland Clinic is a great example of an organization speaking to patient care and empathy:

According to their video intro,

“Patient care is more than simply healing — it’s building a connection that encompasses brain, body and soul. If you could stand in somebody else’s shoes… hear what they hear. See what they observe. Feel what they feel. Could you treat them differently? ”

It seems we’ve become publishing machines, producing content for content’s sake. A friend of mine stated the enemy of content marketing is content marketing.

Our customers don’t need a lot more content. They need helpful customer-centric content that helps all of them and their colleagues to choose a different path along their journey. You’re assisting people change .

This is why you want customer advocates .

Also, I rarely hear customers make use of the word content. They call our content based on its utility and how they experience it; terrific ebook, useful blog post, useful white paper, fantastic article, excellent movie, etc . See what I mean?

6. Remember that proximity is influence

Encourage those closest to your client (your sales team, sales growth reps, inside sales, and customer service people) to achieve the points above. We formulate the opinions about companies depending on our interactions with their people.

How Drift makes this real

Dave Gerhardt, former VP Marketing at Drift . shared about how his CEO called him one day and told him, “I think we should get rid of our forms. ”

Gerhardt realized that advertising was becoming more about getting people to convert, i. electronic., fill out forms or jump through the next hoop.

Not only that, but according to Gerhardt, we were “treating individuals like leads and emails instead of treating people like people. ”

We have access to so much great tech in marketing and product sales: analytics, SEO software, web site crawlers, automation, bots, AI, and email campaigns; It’s easy to forget that we are creating for people at the end of the day—not just the mighty algorithms.

When you give individuals what they value or discover useful without expecting anything in return, you build a link and eventually trust. It’s an open secret. Try it. Think about your marketing purpose .

For further on this read 4 Ways, You Can Humanize Marketing and Build Relationships

A cartoon image of a women coming out of a doorway that is an iphone while surrounded by social media icons. She carries a megaphone with a bubble next to it implying she's speaking out something. Next to her there is a man holding a laptop with analytics, charts, and graphs around him. They are both business professionals due to their clothing and how their using social media and the internet. This photo was chosen because to me it exemplifies being the change you want to see and being an example of empathy.
Be the example – Social media vector created by stories – www.freepik.com

7. Apply empathy personally and be an example

Be the change you want to see. Show others by practicing empathy yourself. This idea requires different thinking to drive a different way to do.

Who requirements empathy? Yes, your customers, but also your team and your colleagues inside your company.

I learned that it’s futile to try to make changes outdoors before we first make changes inside. To make a distinction outside our walls, we need to focus inside first. That will starts with us.

Why? Scientists have confirmed that emotions are transmittable ( emotional contagion ). and can become caught just like a cold. I’ve seen companies that are chaos inside try to make a difference outside. And if it works, it’s temporary.

I wanted to talk about a practical empathy instance with email because we are sending emails right now.

Here’s a case from an A/B test executed by MarketingExperiments . It’s an email delivered to potential customers who began an application but did not complete this. Note the difference in firmness: control versus treatment.

A screenshot of the two emails in an A/B test run by Marketing Experiments that was sent to potential customers who began a form, but did not complete it. There is an obvious difference in tone. The email on the left side of the picture was sent to the control group using "stereotypical sales speak" versus the email sent to the treatment group on the right side of the picture was a more empathetically worded email. The "sales-speak" control email reads: "Dear [Name], You're just one step away from getting FREE access to RegOnline, our award-winning Event Registration, and Management Software. Quickly make an event website, try our event marketing tools, build a registration form template, or even generate custom name badges. Click here to finish your profile and get started. Your personal profile is kept secure and we promise NEVER to sell or misuse your information. Have questions? Call us direct at 1-800-XXX-XXXX -- we can even set up your free access over the phone." The "empathetic email" treatment email reads: "Hi [First name], I noticed that you started the process of getting free access to RegOnline but weren't able to finish. Are you concerned about giving out your phone number? Are you worried about high-pressure sales tactics or mandatory contracts? We believe our product sells itself, so we're just here to provide you with whatever assistance you need in getting your event up and running - in whatever way works best for you. We promise NEVER to sell or misuse your information. Call me direct at 1-800-XXX-XXXX and I can help get you rolling. If you'd rather just try again online, use this link instead."

Marketing Tests A/B Test – How a change in tone increased lead inquiry by 349%

The email at the left was “sales speak. ” The email tone to the right was changed to become more empathetic and yielded the conversion rate of 7% versus 1 . 5% for that control email.

What’s the bottom line? By just handling the customer’s anxiety (with empathy) in the email tone, they saw a 349% increase in total lead inquiries.

For more, have a look at 7 Suggestions to Boost Lead Nurturing E-mail Results Immediately .

You may also like this job interview I did with Michael Brenner, the CEO of MarketingInsiderGroup. com on Empathetic Marketing: How To Connect to Your Customers .

Closing Thoughts

I know this may seem touchy-feely, but it’s not. It has an economic benefit.

Empathy is a portion of the unique human experience, and when you avoid it, you happen to be essentially preventing marketing in a way that genuinely speaks to people.

Empathetic marketing in its core is not about “creating emotional responses” in customers.

Rather, it’s about understanding their current emotional state at the time and being able to meet all of them there in an individualized method.

If we can emotionally connect and give customers what they want, we can create a lasting competitive advantage that will enjoy more revenue and revenue.

I actually fundamentally believe that empathy is the most powerful force in B2B marketing – Alan Cohen, Chief Commercial Officer, Illumio

IDEO’s Empathy on Edge puts it this way, “When organizations allow a heavy emotional understanding of people’s has to inspire them—and transform their own work, their teams and also their organization at large—they unlock the creative convenience of innovation. ”

It starts with your sympathy to get out of the mindset to be company-centric (how do I obtain what I want) to become customer-led (how do I help all of them get what they want).

In summary, the best advertising selling feels like helping (because it is).

It’s your turn

I’d love to hear whatever you think. Do you have a story to share? Let me know.

This is the book cover of Neuroscientist and Professor Edmund T. Rolls titled, "The Orbitofrontal Cortex" (2020). The book is Oxford published. It has an anatomy drawing of the frontal cortex at the bottom with a literal mind map above it showing it's function and processes.
The Orbitofrontal Cortex – Edmund T. Rolls

If the science-y things I mentioned earlier fascinates you as much as it fascinates me, I encourage you to look into Damasio’s proposed Somatic Marker Hypothesis .

Even further, you might enjoy checking out functions by Neuroscientist and Professor Edmund T. Comes.

Progresses is well known for his textbooks Emotion plus Decision-Making Explained (2014) and The Orbitofrontal Cortex (2020).

This article originally appeared on Markempa .

The post How Empathy Will Increase your Sales and Marketing Pipeline appeared first on Advertising Insider Group .

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