We live in the most hyper-connected time in human history. But while the reach of our collective connectedness is instant, going further than ever before, our urge to connect is far from revolutionary. From misery loving company to folie à deux, we’re hard-wired to seek connections with each other, and one of the easiest and most available ways to connect is through shared experiences. When we learn that someone else has been through what we have, we feel validated, understood, and safe, We can share without the fear of being judged or shamed. And thus, a tangible connection is formed.
Of course, the varied and often many-splendored connections we make exist (ideally) on different depth levels; from the dude we make small-talk with on our morning train, all the way through to our significant others. But all connection is synergistic with empathy. We, of course, determine the level with which we will invest and empathize with these individual connections, but if we can’t empathise, we can’t truly connect. Take away the commonality of a shared experience, and connecting still requires understanding and acceptance - in other words, empathy.
Your customer’s connection with your brand is what forms the basis of conversion and loyalty. To feel connected, they need to feel valued and heard. Whether you’re sharing their struggles as an overwhelmed mom or giving them permission to splurge on a luxury upgrade, successful brands immerse their customers in ways that validate who they are, and better their lives in both small or large ways.
1. Find small, but authentic, ways to validate your customer's experience
2. Can your customer literally connect with you easily and swiftly (i.e. via social media)?
3. Can they communicate their needs in a way that makes them feel heard?
4. Listen and respond to their needs and feedback in meaningful ways
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