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Excerpt: Unselling: The New Customer Experience

Excerpt: <I>Unselling: The New Customer Experience</I>

For generations, marketing has been hypocritical. We’ve been taught to market to others in ways we hate being marketed to―why do we still keep trying the same stale marketing moves? Scott Stratten, an expert in viral, social, and authentic marketing shows audiences–using real life, practical examples–how to unlearn the old ways and consistently attract, engage, and hold on to the right customers. In his new book, UnSelling, Scott helps people see the bigger sales picture, and shows a new way of thinking about business that will completely change the way people sell, for the better. We’re happy to share this short excerpt from the book’s first chapter:

When the wife of a major online company Chief Executive Officer (CEO) commits fraud at the Boston Marathon, it matters. When your latte is cold, when the head of your favorite clothing company is a racist, when a major airline sends an angry customer a reply that includes a pornographic picture, it matters. I don’t want to live in a world where it doesn’t.
Sales are affected. Human Resources suffers.And customers change their purchasing decisions—most long before you’d ever even considered them a prospect. Sixty percent of all purchase decisions are now being made before you ever get a chance to share your pitch.

For too long in business, it’s been buy or good-bye, and we’ve focused all our energy on the moment of the sale. Counting our sales numbers as successes and then sending customers on with too little support and products we simply shipped without care or concern for the next step. All our eyes and attention have been on our sales funnel, ignoring those outside it—both before and after the connection was all about us. We’ve had funnel vision for far too long, and it needs to stop.

UnSelling is about everything but the sell. We put all of our focus on the individual purchase transaction, while putting the rest of our business actions second. We’ve become blind to customer service, support, branding, experiences, and even product quality.

UnSelling is about the big picture: creating repeat customers, notone-time buyers; creating loyal clients that refer others, not treating people like faceless numbers; becoming the go-to company for a product or service, before people even need it.

Businesses don’t need social media, but they can be connecting with clients socially and they need to be listening. Brands have jumped too quickly into social without thinking and use the medium to push out messages, rather than take part in conversations. I don’t believe that anyone goes online to talk to their hot dog or toilet paper. But when something goes wrong with a product like those or when someone has a great experience to share, the brand needs to be there to react. The best brands create amazing experiences and products and then make it easy for people to share them. Your video doesn’t have to be viral, viewed by a million people; it just needs to be contagious in front of your specific market. Content, connection, engagement. It’s time to separate from the pack of noise. That’s UnSelling.

From Unselling: The New Customer Experience, by Scott Stratten (with Alison Kramer).