I am an avid gamer (not pro-good but I love it)!! My first gaming experience was me always trying to find an excuse to visit one of my friends from school in order to spend the afternoons playing Contra, Super Mario, Bomber Man, Twin Bee et al. I was so jealous – he had the TV game console with the 99-in-1 cartridge (he had made it in life in my mind)!
Fast forward a good couple of years (like two decades) and I still enjoy playing the ‘old school classics’ and with my son also wanting to get in on the action. I also recently attended the Rage Expo 2017 and was taken back all the way to my childhood with one of the exhibitors – Eurasian Amusements. They are a home-grown company that builds custom arcade machines for all the geeks like me who like nothing more than jamming ‘the classics’.
You might be wondering what all of this has to do with ‘proactive client communication’ so let me explain. Eurasian Amusements held a competition for attendees at the Rage Expo to win themselves one of their consoles. It was a ‘Selfie Competition’ – so post a photo to their Facebook page, get the most likes, win the console you took a photo with. Simple enough right?
Wrong… I decided to enter and through chatting to some of the promoters manning the stall was lead to believe that the competition extended to videos as well so, because I REALLY wanted to win, shot, edited, posted and shared like crazy a video of me playing Metal Slug on one of their consoles (you can check the video below).
Getting my GEEK on with Eurasian Entertainment!! Awesome games taking me back to my childhood with the 50c arcade games!!!Like the video and share and if you want some awesome arcade games then like EurasianAmusements page – they got your back!!#EurasianEntertainment #RageExpo17 #T_M_Images
Posted by Curtis Harper Scott Young on Saturday, 7 October 2017
I was like a kid before Christmas again (particularly because it would have been absolutely awesome for myself and Harvey – my son – to jam all the games I loved as a kid) – I checked my post often and checked ‘the competition’ to see if I was getting enough likes to win. Come to the competition deadline and upon checking I could see I had indeed received the most likes of all the entrants. Now it was just a waiting game – I thought my efforts had paid off!
A few days after the closing of the competition I visited Eurasian Amusements Facebook page to see they had announced the winners of the competition – my video was not one of them and this is where the lessons about ‘proactive client communication’ come in.
The ‘bad’ lessons
Lesson 1: Everyone deserves to be acknowledged personally
So in my disappointment (not necessarily because I didn’t win but because I basically ‘stumbled on’ this fact and did not receive any feedback from the Eurasian Amusements team) I decided to contact the Eurasian Amusements team via their Facebook page to find ‘WTF’ and this is where the big lessons come in.
When doing ANY form of promotion where you ‘push’ clients to perform certain actions via your chosen channel make sure that you maintain consistent and open communication on that channel throughout the period of your ‘push’ and beyond. This should be in the context of ‘Thank you’ messages, likes, emails etc etc. This will allow you to translate an ‘interested’ person into an engaged client and allow you address any misunderstanding (if any exist) upfront (& this is an important one) before your potential person has a chance to second-guess their interest or get annoyed.
Lesson 2: Don’t provide ‘cookie cutter’ responses – get personal
The reply I received was that my entry had been disqualified because it was a video and not a photo that I posted. Now, this in itself would not have been an issue had I not been led to believe videos entries were ‘okay’. I explained this to the team and was met with the same reply along with the offer of a 25% discount if I was interested.
I will be honest at this point I was annoyed (because of the failure of applying the first lesson along with the fact that I was getting questions and continued ‘likes’ from the people I basically spammed to try win as to the outcome) and this triggered my angry side (I basically told them to shove the discount) and is where the second lesson comes in.
Where and if a misunderstanding might have occurred ensure that you treat that situation with the utmost of care and make sure you do EVERYTHING possible to make your potential client feel ‘heard’. What this translates into is ‘getting personal’ – not in the sense of name-calling but by providing answers that show empathy from a REAL person.
This doesn’t mean reneging on your first decision / communicated outcome but definitely means evaluating (with the help of the person you annoyed) whether you could have done things differently.
The ‘good’ lessons
Lesson 3: Empathise and make your communication ‘human’
So after getting upset, I received further communication from the Eurasian Amusements team (an identifiable person) who did the following things that took a bad situation and ensured that I didn’t need to go on a ‘shaming’ campaign (thank you, Olivia – you deserve a Bell’s!).
- She immediately positioned herself as a senior at Eurasian Amusements which translated into me being more confident that my concerns were being taken seriously (if you might have stuffed up this is the time for you as a senior leadership team to learn from that situation by getting into the ‘trenches of that situation’ – passing on such responsibility will ensure that issues aren’t really resolved because your employees will answer what they are told to answer the way they have been told to answer with no power to ‘do what is right’.)
- She empathized with the situation from my point of view (not just from a point of trying to defend their position). Part of the reason I was upset was, yes the failings noted previously but, because my son was going to have a root canal operation the next Friday (he is almost 3 by the way so a root canal means general anaesthesia and is dam scary for a little one) and I really wanted to surprise him with the console as a ‘be brave daddy’s got you’ gift.
- She communicated what and how she would try to reach an amicable solution without over-promising and stuck to those promises.
Lesson 4: Sometimes it’s not the content of your message that matters but how you communicate it
Long story short, I was still offered the discount but because of the difference in interaction (I spoke to a person who I felt ‘heard’ me) I am comfortable in saying with confidence that Eurasian Amusements are the best place (not the perfect place necessarily but definitely the best because of people like Olivia) to go to if you want to re-live your childhood memories with classic old-school gaming consoles!
Check out their store and purchase your awesome ‘old-school’ arcade console: Eurasian Amusements Shop
Lastly, this post is not meant to discredit anyone and is merely expressing the good and bad experiences potential customers can feel based on how you react and interact with them. If you want to chat about how to improve your communication with your clients specifically then feel free to hit me up on any of the social media (& other) channels I am on and if things are ‘really tough’ we offer expert advice to entrepreneurs/startups to take their great ideas and turn them into awesome businesses! We might not have all the answers but our intent will definitely be to help you create awesome experiences because that’s what differentiates one great product from another!
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