The Biggest Communication Problem Facing Marketers


We know how frustrating it can be: you’re spending 40+ hours a week and trying to get a message across to your customers. And, despite being diverse and creative in your efforts, you still hear the same thing: “I had no idea!”

Despite the fact that there are more communication platforms than ever, it’s harder than ever to get your message across effectively. Why is that?

We see one communication shortfall that emerges more than any other among modern marketers: assuming your customers know the information that you’ve communicated.

Imagine this scenario:

Your bank has been trying to sell more home equity lines of credit, but is struggling to get customers to bite. Sure, there have been a few, but you’re just not hitting the numbers you expected for the rate you’re offering.

To solve this problem, you offer incentives to your bankers for selling the product, advertise heavily. You see a slight increase but not a significant return. You press the staff more to upsell, and nothing works.

The real problem is not your staff or your advertising, it’s your assumption that the customer understands. In this scenario, you’re assuming all of your customers know what a home equity line of credit is, how it can benefit them, and how competitive your rate is. Your communication isn’t effective because your communication isn’t meeting the desired recipient at their current level of knowledge and taking them to the point of understanding.

So, what do you do? Start the conversation with the problem first. Put up some slides your digital signage that help the customer to understand their problem, while they wait. Start with the problem the customer is having that would be answered with the home equity line of credit: “Is it time for all new windows? A new roof? New flooring? You might be able to afford it now. Ask us how.”

When your customer is at the teller window, instead of saying, “Did you know you qualify for a home equity line of credit?” try asking some questions that would vet them for whether they’d be a fit for the product. Then, and only then, ask the quesiton: “Are you familiar with how a home equity line of credit works? I see here that you qualify.” At that point, they’re ready for more in depth info.

If you’re in need of more effective communication in your business, we can help. Click here to sign up for a 15-minute call, on which we’ll help you inventory your communications methods and strategies, help you to better understand your target audience, and pinpoint some strategies for addressing the problems.


Colleen Cook

Colleen Cook

Colleen Cook works full-time as the Director of Operations at Vinyl Marketing in Ashland, Ohio, where she resides with her husband Mike and three young daughters. She's an insatiable extrovert who enjoys finding reasons to gather people.