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Sunday, September 11, 2011

Practice the art of listening

So much of advertising and promotion, even on social technologies, involves shouting, one-way communication. What about the lost art of listening? While traditional media don't offer many opportunities for listening, you can do so on social platforms (and even in your store). Ask questions and let your customers talk. By giving them a voice, they will provide ideas for your store.

Now, not every idea will be a good one or even something you can implement, but listen intently and sincerely. You'll gain insights into your customers, and they'll feel appreciated as a shopper. Social technologies simply provide the venue for listening and discussion, but that's it. Facebook is just a portal; it doesn't ask questions or listen. You do that. When you're implementing a social media strategy, consider how you'll listen.

One thing's for sure: you'll never know what your customers want, need or think if you never listen to them.

- Brian Sonnenberg