Effective marketing communication offers multiple ways to connect

Is your marketing communication and the content you share effective?

Are you sure?

If you’re not seeing the signups, sales or conversions you expect, one easy place to start troubleshooting is a key area of communication: your contact info.

I recently received a postcard to sign up for more information about a project, business, opportunity. It was exciting, and definitely one I wanted to sign up to get more information.

So I looked for the website to check out more information and sign up.

There wasn’t one. There also wasn’t an email signup sheet, Facebook page, Instagram or Pinterest account, or any other way to connect online, through apps or through social media. Edited to add: There wasn’t even a phone number.

In a face-palm moment, the fact that a phone number was a missing typical piece of contact info didn’t even occur to me. Oops. Clearly there are ways that I don’t think to communicate! 

My husband and I laugh whenever my mother-in-law pulls out a phone book to call a local restaurant or business. My parents recently sold their house (to move near us, yay!), and my mom made sure to leave all the phone books neat and tidy. I didn’t have the heart to tell her the new owners are unlikely to use them for anything other than a paperweight. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they’re phone book junkies. I know that it would never occur to me to use a phone book, and it’s probably been close to 20 years since I’ve had one in my house (pretty much…since I moved out of that same house my parents just sold!).

Back to the postcard and project I mentioned…

The only way to sign up was by scanning a QR code.

What?!

This may be shocking, but not everyone uses QR code readers.

And if your customers, audience or anyone you’re trying to connect with can’t connect with you, you have a major problem.

If you're not making as much money as you want to, you may have this major problem sabotaging sales. Fortunately, it's an easy fix!

 

As much as I love technology, I’ve never had reason to jump on the QR code bandwagon. I didn’t have a QR code reader. I do have a smart phone, so all I needed to do was download an app, but still…

If I wasn’t highly invested in the subject, I would have quickly abandoned a great project.

(Seriously, are QR codes still a thing? If so, who uses them? Is it a sign of my mid-30s mom-ness that I think QR codes are more trouble than benefit? What’s so hard about typing in a url or clicking a link?)

It’s easy to fall into a trap of thinking that everyone is just like us, and uses the same ways to communicate.

News flash: They’re not.

With billions of people in the world, and over 325 million in the United States alone, it’s unrealistic to expect everyone to communicate the same way.

If people – aka consumers – aka your target audience – aka those individuals who want to give you money – don’t know how or where to find you, they can’t buy from you.

You need to offer multiple options for people to connect with you.

The average person is exposed to hundreds of ads per day. If they are interested in what you have to offer, don’t make it harder than it needs to be to get connected to you!

One more not to use a sole means of communication: I’ve also seen this with Facebook event invites. Yes, they’re easy, but there are many people that aren’t on Facebook for a variety of reasons. Are they being excluded simply by nature of how an invite is sent out?

Are you inadvertently hindering your friends, customers, fans or audience from joining what you’re doing because you have limited options to connect?

To maximize connection (and increase sales) make sure people know how to contact you!

Common + critical contact info types

1. Website

If you don’t have a website in 2018, do you even have a business? Setting up a basic website (like this one!) is super simple using WordPress and Siteground hosting (aka, what I use).

2. Email address

Better yet, a way for people to sign up for an email newsletter for you to stay connected with them right in their inbox. I use and recommend ConvertKit.

3. Phone number

Yes, this is still important, especially if you’re a local business. I have the same phone number I’ve had since 2001, which is super weird to think that it’s been with me longer than just about anything else – my last name, my husband, my kids, my house.

4. Social media platform of the week

These are self-explanatory at this stage, right? Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Snapchat, any other fancy new social media platforms that I don’t keep up with.

In summary

Whatever you do, offer multiple ways to connect with people and for them to contact you. You may not offer all the contact info types – you won’t find a phone number anywhere on this site – but think about what types of communication platforms the people YOU want to connect with are on. If your audience is teens and twentysomethings, that’s going to likely look vastly different than targeting those in their 50s and 60s.

 

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