Our team had the pleasure of listening to a talk from Vanessa Van Edwards about the levels of conversation you have with people in your life and how often you go into autopilot during these interactions. This blog shares a bit of what we learned + our best practices when it comes to strengthening your client relationships.
Communication is the most critical part of your relationship with your client. Conversation makes people feel comfortable. But knowing how to craft the conversation can take time and effort. Generally speaking, no one likes to sit in silence while you work.
But how do you perfect the art of conversation? What questions should you ask to strengthen your relationships with clients? For new beauty professionals, connecting with new clients or clients in a different age demographic can be challenging.
Developing a relationship with a client starts with a conversation. It can be easy to get stuck in a small talk rut. Specific questions can deepen guest relationships from the surface level to a loyal longtime client.
The types of questions you ask and the things you choose to talk about can determine the level of connection you create with your guest. Let’s look at the levels of conversation to help you create a deeper connection with each of your guests.
Level one of conversation typically consists of the general traits:
- Home Town
These conversation starters you ask put people into autopilot. They don’t create a connection or help build a relationship. When someone asks, “How are you?” The quick response is “fine” or “doing well.” These responses don’t allow for further questions, nor do they often receive a truthful answer. It’s impossible to connect when people go on autopilot. Instead of “How was your day?” try asking, “What was the highlight of your day?” Instead of “What is going on at work?” try asking, “Are you working on anything exciting these days?”
Level Two of the conversation consists of personal concerns:
When you ask questions about your guests’ concerns, you’ll connect on a deeper level with them. Follow-up questions should flow easily because you’ll be learning about your client’s values and motivations for doing things. Questions you can ask to reach level two with your guests can look like this; “Are you working on any passion projects/hobbies?” “What has been on your mind lately?” “What book/tv show/movie is your favorite?- Follow up “Why is it your favorite?”
Level Three of the conversation consists of personal self-narratives:
- How we make sense of our journey and purpose through life.
- The stories we tell ourselves about the world around us.
Your guests, your most loyal, raving fans, would fall into the Level Three style of conversations. You’ve already established a relationship with these clients and aligned on a deeper level. The questions you can ask these clients go beyond what you typically discuss with a level two client. Questions you ask these guests are “What is something you feel people don’t know about you?”, “What has been the proudest moment of your life?”, “Who has had the biggest impact on your life?” etc.
Other questions you can ask to dive deeper into topics with your clients
- What is your biggest goal this year?
- Are you learning any new skills right now?
- What are you looking forward to this month or season?
Strengthening your relationship with your clients starts with the conversations you choose to have with them. Good discussions can enhance your guests’ experience. As a good service provider, it’s essential you remember the moments that made your guests light up. These are topics that are important to them. Take notes if needed. By recalling these topics the next time your client visits, your client will recognize that you care and listen.
When it comes to crafting conversation, follow your guest’s lead. Resist the urge to fill the silence with endless chatter. Remember, guests want to feel important and special. Keep the conversation focused on them and on the commonalities you share. This will help you strengthen your client relationships.
Dive deeper into this topic and hear more about Vanessa’s research by watching the video below!