We see a couple who has been together for decades and succumb to amazement. Congratulations and celebrations are a must for those who have endured each other and life's surprises year after year. Glasses raise at the sight of a marriage entering its 40th, 50th, and 60th year.
How do they do it?
It's an age-old question that every couple reaching this milestone must answer. We want to know the secret in hopes they will hand over the keys to such success. No matter how many times and how many different couples are asked, the response rings with subtle similarity. Communication and compromise. The willingness to talk about anything and the ability to be flexible when sharing takes place allows relationships to endure the test of time.
Now, if these two C's take the tried and true relationships to death do us part, how many of us ensure that they are strategies embedded in our marketing efforts? In our marriage marketing series, we discussed the vitality of communications and how it produces a better understanding of the who behind our audience. Solid dialoguing creates a pathway to building out personas, providing us a more in-depth view of our target audience.
So, what's next? We've implemented two-way communications, we've defined our perfect customer. Now what?
Here comes compromise. You've listened, and you've identified, the next step to bliss requires the implementation of an action. As marketers, here is where we hit our crossroads. After everything our audience has taught us, we must decide whether we will continue to do what we want or begin modifying based on what we have learned.
Some marketers believe that the audience doesn't know what they want; we have to tell them. Even after hearing from the customer, there is a refusal to adjust or make any change. Instead, they plow forward with their own intentions, seeking to meet what they want versus their audience needs. Please note, this is a quick path to a relationship crash and burn—no 40th anniversary in this future.
We have to flip this mindset on its head. We aren't here to shove products and services down our customers' throats, somehow convincing them they can't make it without us. When this method is utilized, we've moved away from a relationship and entered into the bully zone. The marketer's role is to align business goals with customers' needs, wants, and desires. This meeting place is our compromise.
Compromise is where the organization and those it serves both wins. We are both happy with one another and couldn't imagine life without each other. Repeat business happens in this blissful state. Rather than always fishing for acquisitions, we have room to nurture those customers that already exist.
Decide now to be an active participant in the listening process. Believe what your audience tells you and move forward in bending over backward to please them if you want to keep them.
Compromise well, anticipating your arrival to those golden years together!