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WHO ARE YOUR POTENTIAL CUSTOMERS LISTENING TO?
Is it true that it’s not really “what” you know, but “who” you know?
• Are you wondering how to expand your sphere of influence?
• Or just want to reach more potential customers?
But not sure who they are listening to?
TAKING ADVICE FROM OTHERS
Understanding who influences your potential customers is important because most people rely heavily on advice from others for purchasing decisions.
In this lesson, you’ll describe different types of influencers for your products or services.
• You’ll use this description to catalog influencers who can connect with your perfect customers.
THIS LESSON’S OBJECTIVES
Over the course of this lesson you’ll:
- Discover what makes an influencer
- And describe the types of people and sites who are influencing purchasing decisions of your potential customers.
YOU CAN DO THIS!
Each lesson includes the three styles for adult learners with:
• An Audio File
• A Written Transcript
• And a Practice Guide that gives you “hands-on” training customized to your own business.
WHO INFLUENCES DECISIONS?
Who is an influencer?
Simply put, this is someone who influences the decision-making process directly or indirectly by providing information and criteria for evaluating alternative buying actions.
Let’s break that down a little more.
TAP INTO AUTHORITY
Influencers can be family, friends or co-workers.
They can include online sources of information and review sites that compare different choices for searchers.
It is really any source that people trust to get opinions, facts, and experiences.
The reality is that people are more inclined to trust the opinion of someone they view as an independent source than a company selling a product or service.
How can you tap into this authority?
WHERE DO YOU GO FOR ADVICE?
The starting place for determining who your influencers are is to ask:
• Who is a reliable source of information about this topic?
• Who would you go to for advice about this product or service?
• And what types of people do you trust to give you the “straight story?”
Let’s look at some examples:
EXAMPLE: FIND A DOCTOR
You have sore throat.
- Could it be strep?
You’re new to town and don’t have a regular doctor.
- Would you ask neighbors, co-workers?
- Would you check out a medical site such as WedMD.com?
All of these sources could be potential influencers.
Here’s another example:
EXAMPLE: NIGHT ON THE TOWN
You are looking for a restaurant for a special dinner.
Who would you go to for advice and information?
• Would you look at online reviews?
• See who’s “checking in” at places on Facebook?
• Read about a new place in a blog you follow?
• Or ask friends what their recommendations are?
Even in this age of technology, people still place the most importance on the opinions of people they know, like and trust.
WHERE DO YOU SEARCH?
Next, go online and search for information about problems your products or services can solve for potential customers.
Which sites would you go to for information?
What is it about those sites that make you feel that way?
• Do they compare alternatives?
• Do they have lots of favorable reviews?
• Do they list testimonials of satisfied customers?
• Or do they have a reputation for impartiality-like Consumer Reports?
Make some notes about what makes their information most valuable to you in making a purchasing decision.
The truth is that people are influenced by a variety of sources.
They also look for reinforcement of the emotional drivers for their purchase.
The previous lesson on emotional drivers covers these in further detail, but here are some examples of who may be an influencer depending on what is driving the purchase.
WHAT EMOTIONAL DRIVERS?
If this purchase taps into the emotional driver of “approval” the potential customer is more likely to be influenced by the number of “likes” on Facebook, or the opinion of someone with “celebrity” status they follow on Twitter.
If they are looking for “safety and security” they may rely more heavily on stories from friends, and the word of trusted protectors, such as a police officer, doctor, or other professional with a reputation of caring for others.
Finally, if control and freedom are the keys in this purchase, they may look for a large number of favorable reviews, examples of excellent customer service, and opinions of those who share similar goals or experiences.
TIME TO GET REAL!
Go to your practice guide and brainstorm the types of people and sites that influence your potential customers.
Look at each type and ask yourself:
• Who would I ask first?
• Whose advice would I trust the most?
• Who do I view as the most knowledgeable about my products or services?
• And who has the biggest audience already?
Identify 2-3types of influencers to start connecting with about your products or services.
Now that you’ve looked at who your influencers are, let’s look at reaching them to connect in our next lesson: “How to Find Your Influencers?”