Jacek Kotarbiński: In your book, you encourage people to talk to clients. Why is it so important? After all, it is enough to broadcast another advertisement or lower the prices to increase sales.
Marcus Sheridan: Tapping into the brain of your customers/clients is everything in business. You MUST know their thoughts, feelings, questions, worries, fears, etc. The more you can do this, the more you can address each of these head-on, especially on your website. And the more you do that, the more you win their trust. It’s like a domino effect.
Social media considered to be the best communication channel with clients. Do you think so too? How should professional communication in these channels look like in your opinion?
I don’t think social media is the best communication tool at all, at least not for all businesses. For example, with my swimming pool company River Pools, we did almost no social media for years. But we absolutely dominated the industry because we answered more questions than anyone else on our website about fiberglass pools, and we also produced more videos than any other pool companies were doing. The key is having a clear direction and focus, and then being great wherever you are, versus just being “OK” on multiple platforms.
Clients often don’t know what they want. Steve Jobs suddenly appears and does not ask customers for their opinion. It launches brands that change the world. What do you think is the role of visionaries in business?
I think there is a big difference between seeing around the turn as Jobs often did, versus simply not listening to the marketplace. My general rule of thumb is to obsess over what buyers want, how they behave, and how they are evolving—and then meet that either at that point, or even past that point, which is exactly what Jobs did.
What are the challenges for customer experience in the coming years?
I think the biggest challenge will be having true “face to face” and “human to human” experiences. It’s by those moments of intimacy and closeness are we able to see a brand on a personal, individual level. The more digital we become, the less we interact. This is why things like video and really showing our people is such a major part creating a better CX. Along with this, businesses need to remember that buyers are more impatient than they’ve ever been. They want answers, and they want them now. They don’t want to call. They don’t want to fill out a form. They want friction free. This is the essence of a great CX in 2021 and beyond.
What are the most important elements a Polish reader should remember from your book?
Don’t overcomplicate sales and marketing. Simply listen to your customers. What are they thinking? What are they asking? What are they fearing?
Once you start to identify those things, take the time to answer their questions/fears/etc. well. Be honest, be transparent. This will make you the voice of trust in your space and sales will naturally follow.
What are your first associations with Poland? Do you have any experience? Do you know any brands?
I actually have never spoken in Poland, despite speaking throughout Europe. Maybe we can change that one day!
Who was your master in business? Who inspired you and why?
Jim Rohn was my idol. He was a master teacher and communicator. And the best teachers and communicators make the best marketers and sales professionals today.
How are you doing as a keynote in times of a pandemic?
I’m still doing many, many keynotes during this period over video, arguably more than I’ve ever done before. The only difference is now I can’t travel, but it’s still a very powerful learning experience for the audience, and when times are tough, businesses and individuals are more inclined to learn and put for the effort to get better.
Are there business books that you particularly appreciate?
Good To Great changed my life as a business owner. It led to me focusing on just fiberglass pools with my pool company, and that led to a singular focus to growing the business online, and that led to us becoming the most trafficked swimming pool website in the world.
One golden advice for Polish readers.
Remember, when communicating online, this phrase: “It’s dumb not to dumb it down.” Don’t try to sound smart. Seek understanding. That’s it.
Today Marcus Sheridan is a highly sought-after international keynote speaker known for his unique ability to excite, engage and motivate live audiences with his simple, yet powerful transformational business approach. Marcus has been dubbed a “Web Marketing Guru” by the New York Times and in 2017 Forbes names Marcus one of 20 “Speakers You Don’t Want to Miss.” Not one to be limited to the stage, Marcus is most often found walking through the crowd, calling audience members by name, and bringing them into his presentation.
As author of the content marketing guidebook, “They Ask, you Answer,” Marcus has not only inspired thousands to achieve their potential but has given them the tools they need to get there. Mashable rated his book the “#1 Marketing Book” to read in 2017. Forbes listed it as one of “11 Marketing Books Every CMO Should Read.” Marcus has been featured in the New York Times, Inc., The Globe and Mail, Content Marketing Institute, Social Media Examiner, and more. He has inspired thousands of audiences and helped millions of people from all over the world to achieve their own success with his “They Ask, You Answer” philosophy.
- Marcus Sheridan: – Tapping into the brain of your customers is everything in business [INTERVIEW]
- Flywheels or a break from every company?
- What doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger – an interview with Krzysztof Pawiński, CEO Maspex
- Do you have the biggest foot in the world?
- Introduction to “They Ask, You Answer” by Marcus Sheridan. Polish edition