When you’re starting out in the fast paced and slightly bewildering world of small business, one of your first priorities is finding your own voice. It’s no longer enough for businesses to operate they need to be able to communicate with their consumers on a number of levels. But if you think that communication with your customer base starts and ends at their presence within your physical store, think again! Winning your customers over on the battleground of the shop floor is only half the battle when you participate in the digitally led and extremely competitive phenomenon that is running a business in the late 2010s.
Communication in business is now a war on multiple fronts. We must communicate internally to our employees; conveying out standards and our ideology as a brand. We must communicate with the legions of wouldbe customers out there through our marketing and social media presence and we must communicate to other businesses, seeking out opportunities for collaboration and co-branding to make ourselves a ubiquitous presence within the local business landscape. But while some may say that content is king, there are many instances in which the way we communicate can be as effective or even more effective than what we communicate. For example…
Your presence at work
We communicate a lot to our employees when we’re at work. We give morning briefings, we send out memos, we conduct performance reviews and give our employees help, advice and suggestions on the fly as we go about our day. But rarely do we stop to think about how we’re creating this.
Sometimes how we communicate can be entirely counterproductive to what we communicate. For example, if you’re telling the workforce how they need to be more focused and time efficient while scrolling through your Facebook feed or telling them that they need to prioritize their workload while looking stressed, exhausted and on the verge of a nervous breakdown, this can seriously undermine your authority.
Your body language, tone of voice, facial expressions and movements play a huge part in conveying the image and presence you want to project to your employees.
Your choice of communication platforms
How many times have you marked an email URGENT and waited several hours for a response? How many times have you needed to convey important information quickly to an employee but not be able to get through to them on the phone?
No matter what you need to communicate, your message can be seriously undermined if you’re not using the right communication platform. Text messages, on the other hand are answered within 15 minutes 97% of the time. Thus, the services of a landline texting company may be more useful to you. No matter how much thought and effort you put into your communication it can easily be undermined by using the wrong platform.
Your digital presence
We all have a very specific idea of what we want our social media presence, website design and content marketing strategy to say about our business. But how we communicate this can completely lose the message in translation even if the content itself is superb. Falling prone to common web design faux pas can make your business look amateurish and ill conceived while poor mobile optimization can risk your voice being unheard in an era where more and more of us absorb content through our mobile devices.