Our customers are everything… Without them we do not have a business. Knowing how important they are to our businesses, wouldn’t you want to do everything you can to earn their trust and maintain an exceptional relationship with them? In my business I am always looking for ways to improve communication and go the extra mile. Today’s world is so impersonal, with text messaging, email, etc., that I am always looking for a way to “step up our game”. After experimenting with many different tactics and strategies, I discovered the power of video email.
Extinguishing The Fire
The following scenario in our support department led me to desperately look for a solution – a way that we can better connect as fellow human beings with our customers. We sell a very technical machine and occasionally we will have a customer who is having a problem that causes them angst and frustration. They work on it over and over trying to solve the issue but continue to get stressed and upset. One particular customer would get so upset that profanity was the language of choice. Nothing my support team could say would deescalate the situation. I think what happens with many people when you are upset and starving for a solution is that when you call a company for help, you expect your problem to be solved immediately. Additionally, when you are in that frame of mind, sometimes people forget that they are dealing with another human being on the other end of the phone and can quickly escalate to a combative tone or even profanity. This is a common issue when you call a support department that is located in another country where possible language barriers can further escalate the problem. However, it is not human nature (for most people) to talk to someone that way if you are face to face, but it is easy to scream and yell on the phone. Well, since it is not possible for us to visit every customer in person, I had to find another solution. I needed a way to connect with the customer in a more personal way. I quickly discovered that this need was not only for our support department, but we also had to find a way to connect and impress our prospect and customers as well.
Get a new relationship off on the right foot
We always try to do everything we can to let our customers know that they are not just buying our product, but they are also starting a relationship with our team – joining our “family”. I have looked into many different strategies outside of just sending email to communicate and strengthen relationships with our customers. I wanted to find something that would overcome the constant impersonal nature that most business communication has come to. I would often think to myself, “wouldn’t it be great if I could just be face to face with this customer?” That is when I discovered the idea of sending video email. Finally something that could be real solution to my problem. I researched many platforms and discovered two things: they were expensive, and they are not easy to use. I gave up on the idea of using a service because it did not make financial sense at the time. But the thought of sending introduction video emails to customers never left my mind. One day I decided to make a couple videos and then upload them to YouTube but assigned them as “unlisted” so I would not have to worry about anyone who did not have the link finding these videos online. I copied the link and emailed it to my prospects. Then I sat back and watched for the view count to increase from 0 to 1 at which time I would know they watched it.
To my surprise as soon as they watched it, I got a reply back with a very impressed tone to it. They were appreciative, not only that I took the time to send a personal video, but also that they got to see me and put a face to my name. Needless to say, both of those prospects became customers. So I decided to keep looking for a provider that could make this process easy while still being affordable for a small business. This is when I discovered CoVideo, a video email platform. They were much more affordable than any of the other providers and the process of using their service is literally on-click. After a short trial, I realized that it was the right solution for our company.
My team and I can quickly record a video email for our customer with one click of button using a simple webcam. The service will automatically convert the video and make it available on their website so it can be copied and pasted into a standard email to send the customer. Part of the service is that they will make a custom template for your business with links and graphics so when someone clicks the email link, a web page opens and the video automatically plays both on a computer or a mobile phone.
Today, when a customer calls or emails and inquires about one of our products, we always send them a Covideo, video email to introduce ourselves. If we speak to someone on the phone, as soon as we are off the phone we record a video saying, “Thank you Mr. Jones for your time today. I will review your application and get back to you in the next 24 hours with a custom proposal to meet your needs….” No one expects this and therefore their reaction is extremely positive and you can be sure that your email will be remembered versus the hundreds of other vendors that your prospect gets emails from every day. Additionally, you will be surprised that your name/brand will be embedded in their subconscious mind because you did something that surprised and impressed them.
The subconscious mind records things that stand out and stores that info to be recalled at a point in time when that relevant information is needed in the future. If you think about the things you remember, often times things that appeared and stood out from the noise of day to day life. Case in point… I can not tell you every performer that ever played at the Super Bowl Halftime Show, but I can tell you the name of the person with the “wardrobe malfunction”. Why do I remember that? I am not even a big football fan. But the nature of what happened at that time was so shocking and out of place in terms of what the subconscious mind is expecting, that an impression was made. Another example… I bet you can remember where you were and what you were doing when you first heard of the tragic events of 9-11. But I bet you can’t remember anything from the day before or after… or how about the weeks or months before or after?
Tips On Using Video Email
After using video email for over a year, I have some simple things that I wanted to share so you can get the best results for your business:
- Be sure that the area around you and behind you is clean with no clutter. When someone watches your video, you can bet that they will notice everything in the video. A mess or clutter in your video frame subconsciously tells the customer that you are “messy” or “unorganized” person and will leave them wondering how you can help them because they do not want to be messy or unorganized.
- Put objects in the background that have no business being there. Since the subconscious mind will notice and store things that it files as negative, you can also put things in the frame that can be “talking points” for positive use. I have been following Pat Flynn for a lot online and his videos on YouTube. He will often put a Mario Brothers objects or some other random item on the wall behind him in videos. Then he will reference his liking to that object in blogs and on his podcast. So there is an association that builds between that random object and himself as a YouTube personality. You might find a customer asking you about that souvenir or movie memorabilia the next time you talk on the phone and you will wonder, “how did they know about that?” until you remember it was in your video background. It is a great way to make small talk as well to get to know someone better.
- Be sure to smile BEFORE the camera starts. The Covideo, video email software will countdown 3…2…1. The very first frame that is shot is used as the thumbnail image for that video. So if you have an odd look on your face, that is what the customer will see. Of course you can also use this to your advantage – do something that will get the recipients attention – trust me, they will remember it.
- Be sure to look directly into the camera at all times. The idea of the video is to draw your customer in and leave a good impression. Imagine how you would feel if you are in a business meeting and the person you are talking to looks everywhere but at you when he is talking. You would feel like that person is not engaged or committed to the conversation – the same applies with video email.
- Keep it casual. The point of a video email is to quickly send a message to a customer to let them see you and get to know you. There is no need to do anything special to prepare for your video – just be you! Of course I would make sure you are wearing clothes and not be in your pajamas – that is unless, of course, pajamas are part of your marketing or brand 🙂
Do something that your customer does not expect and record yourself in their minds. Video email is one way to do it!