The 7 Most Important Questions to Ask Your Prospective Client
Taylor Pettis March 10th, 2020
According to recent research, nearly 80% of consumers believe that brands don’t understand them as individuals. As a B2C business leader, have you taken the time to get to know your client base? Unless you stay in close contact with them and build on the customer relationship, there’s a good chance you could be moving forward in the dark.
You might be a fantastic executive, but you’re not a mind reader. Today, we’re sharing seven of the most important questions to ask your target audience to better understand where they’re coming from, what they need, and how you can help.
Knowing the answers can help sharpen your focus, improve your offerings, and ultimately, grow your bottom line, so read on!
1. WHAT ARE YOUR PAIN POINTS?
It’s tempting to start a client conversation by asking, “What do you need?” or “What do you want?” However, getting a clear and concise answer is often easier said than done.
Customers might not be able to express the exact product or service they’re looking for, especially if they don’t know it exists yet. However, most people are great at telling you what they don’t want or what isn’t working with their current setup.
Begin by asking them to list their current pain points. What are they currently lacking and what gaps do they want you to help fill?
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2. HOW CAN WE BETTER SERVE YOU?
This is one of the most important questions to ask customers, especially on a survey or feedback form.
It only takes one bad experience for someone to stop frequenting your business altogether. If there’s an area in which you can improve, you need to know about it so you can make proactive changes.
One caveat? You can’t simply ask this question and sit on the answers.
This is a pointed inquiry that requires action upon receipt. If there’s a product defect or a gap in service quality, show your customers that you’re investigating it. This way, they know their time and input are valuable.
3. WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO BUY FROM US?
Looking to earn more foot traffic to your brick-and-mortar shop or direct more online visitors to your e-commerce website?
Before you can bring more people in the door, you need to know what led your current customers there in the first place.
The answers to this question can help you gauge whether your advertising, messaging and lead conversion tactics are working the way they should.
Are people responding to your storefront signage, digital ads and sponsored social media posts, or is there a smarter way you can spend your marketing dollars?
4. WHAT’S ONE THING WE DO BETTER THAN ANYONE ELSE?
Every company needs a true differentiator.
While this question can help you identify your top strengths, it’s important to present it in a way that encourages specific answers. A quick reply of “Everything!” might be nice to hear, but it won’t help you know which business areas to highlight in your core marketing.
Rather, you need customers to supply you with enough details that you can discern important patterns within their responses. Which words, phrases or experiences keep popping up in their replies?
Are a ton of people thrilled with your quick delivery? What about your great customer service or the new product improvements you just made? Listen to what they love, and leverage it.
5. WHAT’S ONE THING WE COULD DO BETTER?
You can’t accept the praise without understanding the criticism. Right after asking the above question, follow up with this one.
At first, this seems to be completely focused on how to improve your customer service. While that’s part of the equation, it isn’t all of it. What you’re really looking for are insights that could lead to innovations.
Replying to this question, a customer could say “You’ve always done X, have you considered trying Y?” That simple idea could spark a massive change in your products, services, and processes.
6. WHAT SEARCH TERMS WOULD YOU USE TO FIND OUR BUSINESS?
Increasingly, every business leader with an online presence is learning the importance of Search Engine Optimization (SEO). If your local audience can’t find you online, numbers will undoubtedly lag.
The key to optimizing your corner of the internet?
You have to know the keywords and key phrases that your customers are using to search for businesses similar to yours. With this list, you have a greater opportunity to create blogs, websites, and pages that show up on Google’s coveted first page.
7. DO YOU REFER US TO OTHERS? WHY OR WHY NOT?
Did you know that the majority of small business owners (85%) rely on word-of-mouth referrals to generate the most local customers?
If people aren’t excited enough about your product or service to promote it others, you need to know about it. If they are promoting it, you need to know what they’re saying.
There’s an entire management tool built around the power of promotion. Called the Net Promoter Score, this index measures the willingness of your customers to recommend your company to others, with scores ranging from -100 to 100.
Using the answers, you can divide your customer base into three categories:
Why is this exercise important? One major detractor can offset a ton of promoters. You need to know who’s excited about your brand and who feels the opposite so you can swing the pendulum in the right direction.
IMPORTANT QUESTIONS LEAD TO INSIGHTFUL ANSWERS
Asking hard, revealing questions can be tough. This is especially true when the answers revolve around the business you’ve worked hard to build.
Yet, when you take the time to better understand the mindset of your customer base, you’re already ahead of the game. These relationships are essential to strengthening your value proposition, attracting new clients, and retaining the ones who are already loyal to your brand.
Looking to amplify your customer connection? That’s where we come in.
Our platform makes it easy to establish meaningful, one-on-one connections, one customer at a time. Contact us to learn more and let’s take this next step together.