Use Your Words: Tailoring Your Communications to Client Personas

I’ve always found it interesting that people put such concerted effort into adapting their behaviors to create successful personal relationships, yet so few apply those same tactics to their professional relationships.  In order to sustain healthy and productive relationships with friends, family, and partners, we very often modify our words, actions, and delivery to our counterpart’s needs.  We know what makes the other person tick, understand what motivates them, and know what language has the potential to trigger positive and negative reactions.  As such, we develop a deep-seeded understanding of how to interact with them in nearly any set of circumstances to keep the relationship strong. But what about our clients? Why not use this same train of thought in approaching our communication with our professional network?  If you began to approach your clients in the same thoughtful manner – considering their personality quirks, sensitivities, motivation, and communication style – you’d open up the opportunity to elevate your professional career to an entirely new, (and more productive), level.

An integral part of developing a valuable client profile is understanding the personalities and communication styles that lie within.  And while there are exceptions to every rule, there are undoubtedly patterns that will emerge among your clients in how they communicate and interact in their day-to-day life.  If you take the time to study them, you may discover patterns to their pain points, communication styles, priorities, etc., and leveraging this insight will help you position your brand and your relationship with them in a way that they’ll be more receptive to.  How do you do that? Communication.  The words and behaviors we use in communicating with our clients should be a strategic reflection of our understanding of them as individuals.

Here’s how you might implement this thought process.  If I’m working with clients in a technical field, (e.g. engineers, surgeons, technology professionals, scientists, etc.), I would position my product/service with an emphasis on facts, statistics, projected impact, and logic.  Their success is derivative from their calculations, mathematics, and precision, therefore I would be best served by delivering a message that speaks to them in such terms.  If I’m planning an event for which I’d like them to attend, everything from the initial invitation to the format and content of my presentation should be a reflection of how well I know their personality.  When communicating with them, my language should be succinct and articulate with supportive reasoning. Words should be chosen carefully, keeping a keen eye out for any potential language with ambiguous meaning or unfounded research, and it would get to the point.  There’s a way to be cordial and informative without fillers and back-stories, and this particular group would be most receptive to a presentation that succinctly delivers value without fluff.  Conversely, another group of clients may be creative, conceptual thinkers who thrive on theory and innovation.  When addressing these clients, your presentation might be more interactive and include more case studies, alternative scenarios, and detailed information on how your brand will help inspire their success.

In my humble opinion, effective communication truly boils down to mirroring.  By studying our clients’ communication style and mirroring it back to them through our own words and behaviors, we can build more trust and loyalty and ultimately increase sales.  Here’s some small ways you can put it into practice day-to-day.

Is Joe Smith is friendly, verbose client who thrives on other people’s energy, make a deliberate effort to have primarily phone or in-person interactions with him.  If this form of communication is his preference, you’d be doing yourself a disservice by emailing him a proposal or a follow up message.  On the flip side, if Mary Jones is a blunt, “get to the point” kind of gal, make those emails, calls, and meetings as concise and useful as possible.  Mary will be your biggest fan.

No matter what personality you’re working with, tailoring your branding message and your communications to fit your unique clients’ personalities will ultimately elicit a more successful reaction.  Design your presentations, meetings, and events to address their pain points and format the information in a way that they’ll respond positively to.  Take the time to understand how they want to be marketed to and incorporate language that will elicit the response you’re seeking.  Whether you do this on a small scale or integrate the concept into your entire communication strategy, remember that it’s a relationship and should thus be trusted as such.  Oh, and mirror, mirror, mirror.

-Kathryn Kell

Let us help you create your perfect event.

contact us today to get started